Importing and exporting a catalog

You can import a productCommerce: various forms of merchandise that you can display and purchase from the public site, including products, variations/SKUs, bundles, and packages. Also known as a catalog entry. catalogCommerce: a top-level container for catalog entries such as categories, products, and variants (SKUs). from an external system into Optimizely Commerce. You can also export a catalog.

When to import or export

When setting up an e-commerce site, you need to get the products into the system. You may also need to import a product catalog as new items are added to an external system's catalog. Or, you might want to move or copy catalogs between websites.

While you can manually create a catalog and add catalog entries, that option is less useful with a large catalog. Instead, use one of the import or export methods to efficiently move products into and out of a catalog.

Import and export methods

Depending on the import or export setup, you may need to manually edit the information for imported products (such as adding images, documents, and associations) and their variations to complete the task.

Importing or exporting catalog data via a .zip file

The Import/Export feature imports .zip files exported from Commerce ManagerOne of several main user interfaces in Optimizely Commerce. This UI area, available from the top menu after logging in, provides screens for managing markets, customers, catalog, orders, and so on. You can manage the information on some Commerce Manager screens in other, newer user interfaces. Where possible, we recommend using the newer ones.. It is a quick way to import catalogs from other websites and start with a base for expanding a catalog.

Importing a catalog

  1. Go to Commerce ManagerCatalog management page.
  2. Select Import/Export > Import Catalog.

    Image: Import/Export drop-down list

  3. Drag and drop the catalog file from the source location. The uploaded files appear in the import list.
  4. Click Start Import. A progress window shows the status.
  5. When the import is complete, close the progress window.

    Image: Importing a catalog via drag and drop

    Exporting a catalog

    1. Go to Commerce Manager > Catalog management page.
    2. All catalog nodes appear. Select the appropriate ones.
    3. Select Import/Export > Export Catalog. The Export Catalog screen appears.

      Image: Import/Export drop-down list

    4. Export catalog items in the following ways.
      • To export everything in the catalog node, click Start Export. A progress window shows the export status. When the export is complete, close the window.
      • To export selected files, click Download next to each item.

        Image: Download exported file

    5. Click Download to copy the exported catalog file to your computer.

Importing a catalog using CSV files

You can import and manage catalogCommerce: a top-level container for catalog entries such as categories, products, and variants (SKUs). entries in bulk using an Excel spreadsheet (CSVStands for "comma-separated values"; tabular data in a plain text file separated by the comma character. format) as an alternative to manually creating catalog entries, which is tedious when dealing with a large amount of catalog data.

This section explains how to complete these tasks.

  • Import .csv spreadsheets to create catalog entries in Commerce Manager.
  • Assign catalog items to your category structure.
  • Associate an entry with others (such as a variant/SKU appears within a product or a package).
  • Edit or delete catalog items.

Using the CSV import feature

Follow these steps to import and set up a new catalog.

  1. Create CSV data files (using an Excel spreadsheet or Notepad, for example) with information about categories, entries, and entry relations following the specification below. See also: Sample CSV files.

    CSV file format

  2. Create necessary meta-fields for the new catalog entries. See also: Creating a catalog meta-class.
  3. For each CSV file, create a mapping file, which links data in the CSV file to Commerce Manager attributes.

    Select the type of mapping file you need.

    Mapping file typeUsed to specifyExample
    Category w/ Meta DataData for categories or subcategories within a catalogCSV File type 1 — Category file
    Entry w/ Meta DataData for catalog entries (packages, products, variant/SKUs, and bundlesCommerce: a collection of packages, products, and variants (SKUs) that let customers purchase two or more items at once. Each item in a bundle is a separate line item in a shopping cart.)CSV File Type 2 — Entry files
    Entry RelationRelationships between entries. For example, many SKUs to one product, or several SKUs and products to a package.CSV File Type 3 — Entry relations file
    Entry AssociationAssociations among entries (such as, advertising other items under text like "You may also be interested in...")CSV file type 4 — Associations file
    Variant w/ InventoryInformation for the Inventory tab.CSV file type 5 — Pricing/inventory file
    Sale PriceInformation for the Pricing tab.CSV file type 6 — Sale price file

    For each mapping file type, the view displays a different set of fields and attributes. You manually assign attributes to each CSV file data column.

  4. In Commerce Manager > Catalog Management, choose an existing catalog folder or create a new one to which to import.
  5. Choose Import/export > CSV Import.
  6. Drag and drop the CSV files you created in step 1.
  7. Import the CSV files and their corresponding mapping files.

Sample CSV files

CSV File type 1 — Category file

categoryCMS: A built-in Optimizely property. You apply a category to content, but you need to build the functionality to display the filtered results. Commerce: A grouping of purchasable products. (Same as node.) file specifies data for categories or subcategories within a catalog.

CSV File Type 2 — Entry files

Entry files specify data for catalog entries. The Products, Variant/SKUs, and Packages CSV files for this example are shown in Figures 2, 3, and 4.

CSV File Type 3 — Entry relations file

The entry relations file links one entry to others. In the following example, Var1 through Var5 (different diaper sizes) are associated with Prod1 (Diapers), while Var9 through Var11 (different quantity for wipes) are associated with Prod2 (Wipes), and so on. Some variants are assigned to packages.

The Prod, Var, and Package codes must be the codes from the entry CSV files (Figures 2, 3, and 4). If you include codes not defined in the entry CSV files, an error occurs when they are imported into Commerce Manager.

CSV file type 4 — Associations file

The associations file creates associations among different entries. In Figure 6, Var10 is associated to Var1 as an accessory, and Var2 to Var1 as a cross-sell item.

CSV file type 5 — Pricing/inventory file

The pricing/inventory file specifies information for each entry's Pricing/Inventory tab.

CSV file type 6 — Sale price file

The sale price file specifies information for the pricing section of the Pricing/Inventory page.

Managing content versions during import

When importing a catalog entry or variant

  • Insert. Control the new version's status via the IsActive field.
    • If IsActive=True, the new version's status is Published.
    • If IsActive=False, the new version's status is Draft.
  • Update. Overwrite the current version with data from the input file. Use the IsActive field to determine the new version's status.
    • If the catalog has a published version and IsActive=False, the published version is deleted, and the new version's status is Draft. All other versions are kept as they were before the import.
    • If the catalog has a draft version and IsActive=True, a new published version is created. All other versions are kept as they were before the import.
    • For all other cases, the existing published or primary draft version is overwritten by the version in the XML/CSV file, and all other versions are kept as before. In these cases, the value of IsActive determines the status of the imported entries.
      • If IsActive=True, the new version's status is Published.
      • If IsActive=False, the new version's status is Draft.

Exporting Optimizely Commerce catalog data to Optimizely Campaign

You can set up a periodic transfer of the latest product data from Optimizely Commerce to Optimizely Campaign. (For more information, see Commerce-Campaign integration.)

In Optimizely Campaign, the Optimizely Commerce product data is used in a Content Interface Paragraph. The data can be rendered dynamically based on personal recommendations, or as a static product recommendation rendered for all recipients who get the paragraph in their message. See also: Content interface paragraph.