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Importing Data to CRM from Excel and other Sources [Video]

Read Time: 5 minutes

Whenever any company implements CRM, the first question is whether the new CRM can import their existing data or not? The Good news is that any modern CRM has a very elaborate and effective Import mechanism which allows importing the Data from any system.

Importing your existing data is a very basic and primary feature of any CRM. But there are many precautions to be taken care of before importing the data into CRM.
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Watch this video before planning your CRM Data Import.

Which Data Sources are supported for CRM Import

Now that you are migrating to the New CRM, you might be having your existing data in any format or sources as follows.

  • Tally ERP or any other ERP solution like SAP or MS Navision.
  • Any other CRM software.
  • Excel Files
  • Mobile Contacts
  • Old Foxpro, Access or Dbase formats
  • Any other format.

As long as your previous software allows export to Excel, you are safe. From your last software, export to excel with correct fields, save the file. Use Excel to complete deduplication and other data management, as described below.

Supported Data Formats for Import in CRM

Basically, the supported formats are only two, but that covers almost any data available on the earth.

  1. XLS – Google Spreadsheets or Microsoft Excel Spreadsheet.
  2. CSV – Comma Separated Values.
Data from any source can be imported into CRM, as long as that source allows, export to XLS or CSV format.
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Which CRM Modules support Import of Data

Every CRM module supports data Import. Here are few commonly and most frequently used examples of Modules used for CRM data import.

  1. Companies
  2. Persons
  3. Enquiries
  4. Deals
  5. Tickets
  6. Contracts
  7. Activities like Calls, SMS, etc.
  8. Any other Modules.
  9. Custom Modules.

Common Mistakes in Importing Data into CRM

  1. Common Mistakes in Data Format
    1. First name and last name in the same field.
    2. Multiple phone numbers in one field
    3. Multiple email addresses in one field
    4. Improper date & time format
    5. Improper Values for dropdowns
    6. Same company name written in various formats.
  2. Importing very old Data
    1. Some people want to dump all the garbage from everywhere to one location. The new location is the new CRM.
    2. Old data is imported with a dream that one day, we will contact all of them.
    3. The idea may also be that the CRM has some magical formula which will correct all the data from everywhere.
  3. Importing Contact list bought from some third party
    1. CRM is supposed to have details of people with whom you are already doing business.
    2. Third party database can be used for mass emailing or Bulk SMS, but not for import in CRM.
  4. Importing Data before Cleaning it
    1. Remember, CRM is not a garbage collector.
    2. It is a software, which follows the rule of Garbage In Garbage Out (GIGO). So if you give it garbage, it will return the trash.
  5. Importing Incorrect & Incomplete Data
    1. There is an intention that in future, someday we will clean all the data or there is an idea that CRM will itself correct it.
    2. Most of the times, the previous data which is imported, is done without even checking for correctness and completeness.
    3. Incorrect & incomplete data is useless data.
  6. Using CRM as a Data-Warehouse
    1. Importing useless data, since you don’t have any other place to store it.
Don’t use your CRM as a Data Garbage Collector. Import only relevant, Correct and complete Data.
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Tips for Importing Data into CRM

  1. Clean the Data
    1. Take your data from your old software into MS Excel (or Google Spreadsheet) and make sure that the data is cleaned properly.
    2. Here are some of the most common mistakes.
      1. Missing, incorrect or incomplete email and phone numbers
      2. Wrong Names
  2. De-duplication
    1. Of course, CRM has duplicate detection, But Excel is much more efficient in handling duplicate records.
    2. Remove Duplicate Records from your existing data.
    3. This is very important if you
  3. Organise Data Properly.
    1. Some times the data is scattered, Example – your outlook has email addresses of people while your mobile has phone numbers.
    2. How do you expect CRM to correlate and merge data automatically?
    3. Of course, you have to do this manually only.
  4. Import Current & Correct Data only.
    1. There is absolutely no point in importing old data and then spending months to correct it.
    2. Instead, first import the current data, get your CRM up and running
  5. Split the data if required.
    1. If you want to import leads, then it is straight forward. You have a list of leads; you just import the file into CRM and you are done.
    2. For Customer Contact details, CRM has two modules. Companies module and person module. In case your data is consolidated then you will need to split data accordingly.
    3. The process is straightforward in Excel. Take help of Enjay’s support to resolve this.

Watch this video for some practical tips and also mistakes to avoid while importing Data in CRM.

Of course, CRM manages your Customer Data, But it is much more efficient in managing Sales and Service Process. Don’t fall into the vicious circle of Data Import. Select data to be imported, wisely.
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Process of Importing Data into CRM

Our Team will help you through the entire process and guide you for the best results.

Customise Fields in the CRM Module

  • In case the standard fields available in CRM are not enough for your requirements or your existing data has some extra fields. Then get those fields created in CRM first.
  • Check and modify the names (labels) of the fields in CRM. Alternatively, you may change the field names in the existing data.
  • Remember that the naming convention used in CRM is international and widely accepted one.

Download Data Templates from CRM Modules

  • Once fields and labels are set in the CRM, you are ready with the templates for import.
  • Download data import templates. Templates are Excel files, with field headers already defined.
  • Then fill these files with your existing data.
Use Data Templates for importing Data. It is very simple and effective.
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Cleaning Data in Excel before importing into CRM

  • Clean, correct and complete your data before importing into CRM.

Running Import data Wizard

  • Run import wizard, first step is to upload the CSV file (or XLS File)
  • Once the import gets complete, it gives report of errors and records imported.
  • Resolve those errors and import the file again.

Steps after Import

After Successfully importing the data, you may use some built in add-ons in CRM for further data enrichment and data validation. Here are few examples:

  • Email Validation
    • Verify and validate email IDs in all the modules.
    • Validating email addresses has a huge advantage.
    • If you find an invalid email address, then contact the party and get a new email address.
  • Data Deduplication
    • CRM can detect duplicates in modules like Companies and contacts.
    • Duplicate detection works on the basis of the email ID, Phone numbers, Names etc.
    • Once it detects duplicate record, you can merge that record manually.
    • You can also select which fields to keep from which module.

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