Importing transaction data into Websand

How to import your transaction data into Websand

This post explains how you can import your customer order data (in csv format) into Websand using the import function. If you need information about how to import email subscriber information please click here.

Importing your customer order data

Data is a garbage in, garbage out exercise.  So to get the best results from data driven marketing, you want the data you process to be in tip top condition.

Unlike other email marketing systems, also allow you to import ‘transactional’ information.

That allows you to use Websand as your marketing CRM and segment your audience based on not only who the audience is, but also what they’ve bought and when they bought it.

Websand segment menu

What is Transactional data and why is it important for email marketing?

As the name suggests, the transactional data contains transactional customer data – i.e. a list transactions from people that have bought things from you.   This normally the output of a sales transaction.

Without the spend data we can’t generate your customer lifetime value dashboard, your spend based segmentations will be empty and Websand won’t attribute spend to your email campaigns.

Mandatory fields for importing transactions into Websand

When you are uploading your Transactional CSV we have five MANDATORY fields.  If these fields aren’t included the import won’t be processed and you won’t be able to upload the data.

Not to worry as these fields are data that you would always find within a transaction.

The mandatory fields are as follows. Fields in [brackets] refer to Websand field name within the import mapping

Order number or a transaction id [transaction ID]

This field is used as a primary key for your transaction.  If you upload the transaction with new information it will update against this ID.

Transaction date – [submit_datetime]

The date that the transaction took place, if you have other date fields you can add them during the import, or can use the most relevant date for your activity as the date field for your setup.

Email – [customer.email]

The email address of the customer, this field connects the transaction to the subscriber.

Websand Transaction Import Mapping Explained

Product or Service purchased – [item.name] 

The item they have bought.  CSV imports are limited to a single item for each transaction.  However, multiple items against an order id can be handed through the API or integrations. If you need assistance on this please book a call.

Order Total – [total.total]

The amount spent in that transaction.  This can be a ZERO item.  If so please enter 0.00 in the field.  Websand uses this value to work out the customer lifetime value for each customer.

Adding additional transactional data.

In addition to the fields above, you can add any additional data you like.  You may want to include an order status, category, sku code or whichever fields you need to drive your segmentation strategy.

We recommend you only include data you wish to use for segmenting your audience.  That way you limit the data within the platform and keep things nice and simple.

If you need to add additional data, you can include those extra fields into the import process using ‘new item field’.  During the import, a new field will be created using the ‘column name’ you’ve used during the import and that content to the transaction data.

If you are looking to create segments using’ segment so you can build customer segments based on that data instantly!

Formatting your data before import.

Trouble shooting tips for your transaction import file

Importing transaction data can be a tricky process, here is a list of the typical issues people have when they have problems with the importing process (it’s usually the data).

CSV files only please. Make sure you are uploading a CSV file.  Excel files cannot be imported.

No blank columns.  Before uploading your CSV, please make sure that all of the columns have a title.  Otherwise this could cause issues with the upload process.

No repeat columns.  Before uploading your CSV, please make sure that all of the columns have different names.  Otherwise this could cause issues with the upload process.

Mandatory fields are Mandatory!.  Remember to include the mandatory fields as a minimum requirement.

Date format (ISO or DD/MM/YYYY) please.  Date fields can sometimes cause a problem, we need the date to be in ISO format or in DD/MM/YYYY.  If you experience problems importing, set the date field in the CSV to this format, save and try the import again.

Multiple items in the transaction.  If you have a ‘nested’ field structure a CSV import will have limited results.  If that is your situation check out our API and integrations or get in touch and we’ll find the best way to deal with that data. 

Creating a Transaction Template

Using a template helps you keep the data consistent, which is always super important.

That being said, wherever possible rather than importing transactions we always recommend to use an integration for your transactional needs.

If you are planning to import data into Websand.  We find that Google Sheets is a great way to create a data template, it handles data requirements (especially date formats, please use DD/MM/YYYY or ISO format) much better than excel.

Importing your transactional data into Websand

To import your CSV file into Websand, select the Import Data from the Menu

You’ll then enter the Data Import Screen, where you can add new imports and review the history of the imports you’ve made into Websand.

Step 1:  Select and upload your CSV file

To upload your CSV file to Websand.  Press on the [+ New Import] button in the top right corner of the screen.

Websand Import Page

You’ll then see the following Pop Up.  ‘Upload Data’

If your upload is related to audience or subscriber information then please select ‘Audience’.  If your data relates to customer transactions then please select ‘Transaction

Then select the CSV file you want to upload and select Upload Data.

Step 2:  Mapping the data

Now the fun bit.  Match the data from your CSV file to your Websand account set up.

When you first start, the options will be limited to the mandatory fields, however you can add any additional data fields to your Websand account by selecting ‘new field’ against the selected row.

TIP:  If you select ‘new field‘ the name of the column within your CSV file will be used as the name of the new field in Websand.  That field can then be mapped in any future imports.

Step 3:  Verify the mapping

This screen allows you to check that you’ve mapped the data correctly.  You should have green ticks against the data fields you want to import, and a red cross against the fields you do not.

If you’ve missed any fields you can return back to the previous stage ‘mapping screen’

Websand transactional import validation

Double check you’ve mapped the data correctly and that at least all the mandatory fields are included.

Hit the Start Import button and your import will begin.[vc_empty_space height=”24px”]

Step 4:  Import complete

The details of your import will appear once the import has been completed.

Websand transactional import confirmation

Refresh the screen and you’ll get key details from the import.

You will see this screen if you access a previous import from the import menu screen.  If you ever need to access a file you’ve uploaded to Websand in the past, you can download that file from this screen.

Step 5. Validating the import

Your data will now be in place, you can check the import has worked correctly using several different methods.

Head over the to audience tab on the home screen and click on an example record to make sure that the data is in place.

Websand Audience Dashboard

Click on the ‘key’ from the menu to access the integrations page. The column on the right has a list of the most recently updated records, click on of the records on the right hand column marked as ‘transaction’ and then check the record to make sure the import was updated correctly.

websand integrations page

Or if the import features a new product or service, go to the segment menu and check the product segment. The dropdown list for the product segment should now feature the new product or service.

Try some direct integrations to Websand

Importing is a useful process, especially for offline data collection, but it’s time sapping.  Wherever possible, we strongly recommend that you explore our integrations.  It’s easier than you think to connect Websand to the processes and systems you already have in place within your business.

Not only will that save you loads of time, your data will be consistent and automatically updated, making sure you get the best results from your email and marketing automation activity.

Here are some easy ways to connect your customer order information to Websand

Connect directly to our Transaction REST API.

Connecting your business systems through one of the 1000’s of Websand integrations with Zapier

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Need help with your importing?

If you need more help using the Websand csv import, or further help with your email marketing or data strategy. We can help so please get in touch.

Email support@websand.co.uk or give us a call +44.113.2045925.