How to Set Up Product Import Export Plugin For WooCommerce – Beginner’s Guide

The Best Product Import Export Plugin for WooCommerce

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This article explains the setting up of WebToffee Product Import Export Plugin For WooCommerce. To know more about the features of the plugin, refer to the Product page.

Overview

Product Import Export Plugin For WooCommerce allows you to import and export products to/from your WooCommerce store. You can import simple, grouped, external or variable products. You can easily import, export or update hundreds, even thousands of products using one file which saves your effort and time for manually adding product information.

For importing products to your online store, you must create a CSV (Comma-Separated Values) file, which contains information about mapping fields in the tabular form. You can create a CSV file by using a spreadsheet application such as Google Spreadsheets or Microsoft Excel. Save this file with extension .csv. After entering all details about products in the spreadsheet, you can import products to your online store. While exporting, this plugin helps you to apply filters such as product categories.

The plugin also facilitates you to export or import product reviews and ratings of the products by using a CSV file. You can also customize product reviews and ratings according to the needs. This option is mainly used by store owners/admin to move review and rating from one store to another.

It also supports Cron Jobs (WordPress scheduled task) to schedule importing and exporting of products, as well as reviews into an FTP location in a specific time interval automatically.

Pre-requisites

The CSV Import file must be in UTF-8 format. For more information about UTF-8 encoding, read How to save CSV / Excel File as UTF-8 Encoded?

Installation

After purchasing the Product Export Import Plugin For WooCommerce, the plugin will be available as a zip file in the API Downloads section of your MY ACCOUNT page.

  1. Download the zip file from API Downloads by logging into your Webtoffee MY ACCOUNTS page.
  2. Log in as the WordPress Admin of your online store.
  3. Navigate to Plugins > Add New to upload the downloaded plugin.
  4. Choose the plugin file to upload.
  5. Finally, activate the plugin.

For detailed information about installing WebToffee plugins, read How to Download, Install, Activate & Update WooCommerce Plugin.

Getting started with the plugin

Once the activation is successful, two new sub-menus appear under the WooCommerce section in the WordPress sidebar menu. You can navigate to the Product Import Export settings in two ways:

  • WooCommerce > Product Im-Ex from WordPress dashboard,  or
  • Plugins > Installed PluginsProduct/Review CSV Import Export > Product Import Export.

Product Import/Export

Before you get down to configure settings for product import & export, you should know some information about mapping fields.

The plugin takes CSV file as input for importing products. It maps each field of the CSV file to the field of a particular WooCommerce product (that otherwise needs to be entered manually by admin). Each row represents one single product. For example, the post_title field gets mapped to the product name and the regular_price field gets mapped to the regular price of your product. If you want the plugin to work correctly, you must map headers of all the column correctly and must ensure that all of the fields you enter are in the correct format. If there is any mistake in your import file, your product import may not work as expected.

To get started you must have a CSV file. You can create one or you can export the product to get the format of CSV. Or you can download Product WooCommerce Sample CSV (column headers are same as WooCommerce field) and Product Commercial Sample CSV (column headers are user-defined).

You must enter the product details in the CSV file in a structured format, as given below:

WooCommerce Mapping Fields:

The details about Woocommerce mapping field is given as below:

Column Heading Explanation Accepted value or format
post_title  Indicates the name of the product.  Text (ex. High Heel Shoe)
post_name  Indicates slug name of the product.  Text (ex. high-heel-shoe)
post_status  Indicates whether the product is in a draft or published mode.  draft/publish
post_excerpt  Indicates a short description of the product.  Text/HTML
post_content  Indicates description of the product.  Text/HTML
post_parent Indicates parent of grouped and variable products.  Parent ID
post_password For including a password for a private post. Text
sku  SKU(stock keeping unit) is an identification, usually alphanumeric, of a particular product that allows it to be tracked for inventory purposes.  Alpha-numeric characters
menu_order It decides the order of displaying the products in the shop. Items with menu order = 0 are displayed 1, 2, 3, etc. Products with the same menu order number are then listed alphabetically. When you create a new product it defaults to menu_order = 0.  Numeric characters
downloadable After purchasing the product, whether the product can be downloaded or not.  yes/no
virtual It is not physically existing as such but made by software to appear to do so.  yes/no
visibility Indicates whether a product is available for purchase or not.  visible/hidden
stock  Total number of products available in stock. You can use (+) or (-) signs with parenthesis to add or subtract the number of products to the stock.  Numeric characters
stock_status  It indicates whether the product is in stock or not.  instock/outofstock/onbackorder
backorders Indicate orders for out-of-stock products that cannot be currently fulfilled or shipped, but is requested nonetheless for when the product becomes available again.  yes/no
manage_stock  It indicates whether the stock is managed by store or not.  yes/no
regular_price Indicates original price of the product. Numeric characters
sale_price  It is the price of the product that is being offered at a discounted rate. Numeric characters
weight Indicates weight of the product. Numeric characters
length Indicates length of the product. Numeric characters
width Indicates width of the product. Numeric characters
height Indicates height of the product. Numeric characters
images Indicate image URL or image name. Supports multiple image URLs separated by ‘|’. URL

Eg: http://url/filename1.png

tax_status  It indicates whether the product is taxable or not.  taxable/none
tax_class  It indicates the tax option for the product.  Standard rate/Reduced rate/Zero rate
tax:product_type Indicates the type of the product (simple or variable).  simple/variable
tax:product_cat  It is used during importing the product which indicates the category of product.  Text
tax:product_tag  It is used during importing the product which indicates tag(s) used for the product.  Text
tax:product_brand  It indicates the brand of the product.  Text
attribute:Color  It indicates the available color of the product.  Text
attribute_data:Color  It indicates the metadata about attribute color of the product.  position|visible|variation (ex. 0|1|1)
attribute:Size  It indicates the available size of the product.  Ex. US 7|US 8|US 9
attribute_data:Size  It indicates the metadata about attribute size of the product.  position|visible|variation (ex. 1|1|1)
attribute:pa_unit  This lists out the unit options.  Ex. 10 kg | 20 kg | 30 kg
meta:attribute_pa_unit  It indicates the metadata about the product unit. Ex. 10 kg
attribute_data:pa_unit It defines the position, visibility and whether used for variation or not.  position|visible|variation (ex. 4|1|1)
attribute_default:pa_unit  This is the default value of a unit attribute. Ex. 10 kg

Note: Attribute names with pa are global attributes and the ones without pa are called local attributes.

Mapping fields supported by Google Product Feeds:

Column Heading Explanation Accepted value or format
gpf:availability  Indicates availability  in stock, available for order, preorder
gpf:condition  Indicates condition of the product  new, used, refurbished
gpf:brand Indicates brand  Text
gpf:product_type Indicates product type  Text
gpf:google_product_category Indicates product category  Text
gpf:gtin  GTIN (Global Trade Item Number)  Text
gpf:mpn  MPN (Manufacturer Part Number)  Text
gpf:gender Indicates gender  male, female, unisex
gpf:age_group  Indicates age group  adult, kids
gpf:color  Indicates color  Text
gpf:size Indicates size  Text

Mapping fields supported by Yoast SEO:

  • meta:_yoast_wpseo_focuskw
  • meta:_yoast_wpseo_title
  • meta:_yoast_wpseo_metadesc
  • meta:_yoast_wpseo_metakeywords

On the plugin dashboard, the Product tab is divided into the following two sections:

  • Import 
  • Export 

Product Import Export page

Import Products in CSV Format

The Import section helps in importing products using the CSV file. To start importing products, click the Import button.

The Import section contains three methods for importing products as shown below:

Product import pageMethod 1: Select a file from your computer – The first method is to select a CSV file from your computer.

  1. Selecting a file from your computer: Click the Choose File button to select a CSV file for importing from your computer.

Import product by selecting a file from the computer

Method 2: Provide FTP Details – The second method is to select a CSV file from your FTP server. You need to provide your FTP information for importing products using this method.

Import product via FTP

The following FTP information has to be entered for importing products using this method:

  1. Enable FTP import/export: Check this option to enable FTP import/export.
  2. FTP Server Host/IP: Enter your FTP server hostname.
  3. FTP User Name: Enter your FTP username.
  4. FTP Password: Enter your FTP password
  5. FTP Server Path: Enter the FTP server path.
  6. Use FTPS: Check this option to use FTPS. FTPS (File Transfer Protocol Secure) is a secured extension of FTP (File Transfer Protocol).

Method 3: Enter the URL of the file – In the third method, you can provide the URL of the CSV file from where it will be downloaded for importing the products.

Import products via URL

The section below is the Advanced Options for import.Product Import available options

 

  • Select a mapping file: You can select an existing mapping file. Mapping files are created by mapping your imported columns to product data fields.
  • Update products if exists: Check this check-box to update the existing products on your store with information from the CSV file. Existing products are identified by their SKUs.
  • Skip New Products: While updating existing products, tick this check-box to skip products which are not already present in the store. If a new SKU is encountered in the imported CSV file, it will be skipped, and only the existing products will be updated.
  • Delimiter: In a delimited text file that is used to store data, each line represents a single entity, and has fields separated by the delimiterA delimiter is a character used to specify the boundary between separate entities in a text file. A popular example of delimiter is the comma character, which acts as a field delimiter in a sequence of comma-separated values (CSV). Enter a delimiter to separate the mapping values. By default, a comma is taken as the delimiter. In place of a comma, you can also use other characters like /, ” “, |, @, etc. You can also use the letter ‘t for parsing tab delimiter.
  • Merge Empty Cells: Check this option to merge empty cells when importing the CSV. If this option is not checked, empty cells will be ignored and can lead to issues when importing thing such as attributes for variable products.
  • Delete Existing Products: Check this option to delete the existing products that are not present in the importing CSV.
  • Use SKU to link up-sells and cross-sells: Check this option to use SKU to link the up-sells and cross-sells of a product. If this option is not checked, up-sells and cross-sells of a product will be linked using the Product ID.
  • Disable thumbnail generation: Check this option to avoid the regeneration of thumbnails on import.
  • New product status: This section allows you to change the status of all the new products imported to draft, pending, or published, overriding the existing status in the CSV.
  • Use SKU to link grouped products: Check this option to link the grouped items using SKU. If this option is not checked, the grouped products will be linked using product IDs.

Finally, click the Upload File and Import button to proceed further towards Map Fields.

Map Fields: This section allows you to map your imported columns to product data fields. You can select an existing mapping file or create a new one by naming the mapping file and clicking on the Save Import Mapping button as shown below:

Product import map fields

 

It is divided into the following three columns:

  • Map to: Represents WooCommerce product field names to which attributes will be mapped.
  • Column Header: Represents CSV headers which will be mapped to appropriate WooCommerce fields.

Product import column header

  • Evaluation Field: This column is used to fix/update the required value for a particular field.

Following are the possible values:

  1. Assign any required constant value to field –
    For example, to assign the value ‘cotton mixed’ to ‘attribute:pa_fabric’, enter the value =cotton mixed under Evaluation Field in the attribute:pa_fabric row.
  2. Add any required value to the field –
    For example, to add ‘2’ to ‘length’, write +2 under Evaluation Field in the Dimension: length row.
  3. Reduce any required value from the field –
    For example, to reduce ‘1’ from ‘width’, write -1 under Evaluation Field in the Dimension: width row.
  4. Multiply by any required value to the field –
    For example, to multiply ‘weight’ by ‘1.15’, enter the value *1.15 under Evaluation Field in the Dimension: Weight row.
  5. Divide by any required value to the field –
    For example, to divide ‘sale price’ by ‘2’, write /2 under Evaluation Field in the Price: Sale Price row.
  6. Append any field by required value –
    For example, to append ‘Product Title’ by ‘By HikeForce’, write &By HikeForce under Evaluation Field in the Product Title row.
  7. Prepend any field by required value –
    For example, to prepend ‘Product Description’ by ‘Description’, write &Description[VAL] under Evaluation Field in Product Description row.

Note: You can hover the mouse to the  sign, next to the header Evaluation Field column to see all the above value information. It is as shown in the screenshot below:

Product import evaluation field

  • After mapping all the required fields, save these mapping and evaluation fields in a file by specifying the filename in the Mapping file name field.
  • Click Submit to start importing.

Once the import is successful, a screen is displayed similar to the below screenshot:

Import successful progress dialog box

Merge Products (Update Existing Products)

If your existing product is modified, you can update that modification on your store by merging it with the existing product. For this, update the existing product by importing modified product CSV file.

Follow the below steps to merge products:

  • Check the Update Products if exists option from the Available Options setting of Product Import.
  • Click Import Products to proceed further by selecting the mapping file.

The process of selecting a CSV file for merging products is similar to that of importing products, as described earlier in this article.

Note: If the product SKU does not already exist in your store, then the product is imported as a new product.

You can import simple, grouped, variable and external products. Along with these basic product types, the plugin supports WC Composite products, WC Bundle Product, WC Booking and WC Photography.
For more information on import and export of bundle products, please refer to WooCommerce Import and Export of Bundle Product.

Export Products

Export Product in CSV Format:

With this plugin, you can export products into a CSV file. The exported CSV file contains all the product information from your WooCommerce store. You can export simple, grouped, external and variable products.

To start exporting products, click the Export button. The export settings are as shown below:

Product export page

The export settings consist of the following:

  • Offset: Allows you to set an offset value that lets you skip a specific number of products before exporting.

Product export offset

 

  • Limit: Allows you to specify the number of products to be exported.
    For example, if Offset=0 and Limit=50, the first 50 products will be exported.
    If Offset=10 and Limit=50, the first 10 products will be skipped, and the remaining 50 products will be exported (from product number 11 to 60).

Product export limit

 

  • Product Categories: Allows you to select categories of products to be exported. This option can be used as a filter for exporting products of certain categories.

Product export categories

 

  • Product types: Allows you to select the types of products to be exported. You can import simple, variable, grouped or external products only or any combinations of these types.

Export product types

  • Sort Columns: Allows you to enter the column name(s) by which you want to sort the products in the CSV file. If you want to sort the products by more than one column name, enter a comma (‘,’) in between the column names. Accepted columns for sorting the products are as given below:
    • post_author
    • post_date
    • post_title
    • post_name
    • post_modified
    • menu_order
    • post_modified_gmt
    • rand
    • comment_count

Note: post_parent and ID columns are entered by default. However, if you want to sort the products first by Product ID, you can manually enter ID in the Sort Columns field.

  • Delimiter: Enter a delimiter to separate the mapping values. By default, a comma is taken as the delimiter. You can also use characters like /, ” “, |, @ and so on.

Product export delimiter

  • Select a mapping file for export: Similar to import settings, you can select an existing mapping file for exporting products. This option is enabled only when you create your first mapping file.
  • Columns: Select checkboxes from the Column field for required columns to be exported. With the Column Name field, you can modify the column header in the CSV file. To do this, simply enter an appropriate name for the specified column.

Product export columns

Additional options for exporting:

Additional options for exporting

  • Save the export mapping: Enter a mapping filename for exporting.
  • Include hidden metadata: Select the checkbox if you want to show hidden metadata of your products in the CSV file. To get thumbnail IDs of the product images, select this checkbox.
  • Export Children SKU of Grouped Products: Enable this checkbox to link parent and child products with SKU. If this box is unchecked, parent and child products are linked using the product ID.
  • Convert shortcodes to HTML: Enable this option to convert shortcode to HTML in the exported CSV.
  • Export images as Zip file: When this option is chosen, the exported CSV will include only the names of the images of the products instead of the entire path/URL. To link the products with their corresponding images, all the images that are related to the products being imported will be downloaded to a zip file.

Export images as zip file

The Export Images as Zip file option is set to no by default. So if you do not want to export the images in a separate file, you leave the field as is and go ahead with the export.

When you choose yes, click on the Export Product’s Images button to download the images in the zip file. After downloading the zip file you can export the products in a CSV file.

  • Click Export Products to start exporting the CSV file.

The exported CSV will be downloaded on your computer automatically.

The following is a screenshot of a sample exported CSV file.

Sample exported CSV fileExporting Products from WooCommerce Products page

Apart from exporting products from our plugin section, you can directly import it from the WooCommerce product page. The products in the WooCommerce products page will be displayed as shown below:

WooCommerce product page

 

To export product details, select the products you want to export and select Download Products as CSV from the Bulk Actions drop-down list and click Apply. All the details about selected products will be auto-downloaded to the CSV file.

Bulk actions

Product Reviews Import/Export

The Product Reviews Import/ Export tab allows you to export or import product reviews and ratings of the products by using a CSV file. You can also customize product reviews and ratings according to your needs. This option is mainly used by store owners/admin to move reviews and ratings from one store to another.

For importing product reviews to your online store, you must create a CSV (Comma-Separated Values) file, which contains information about mapping fields in the tabular form. You can create the CSV file by using a spreadsheet application such as Google Spreadsheets or Microsoft Excel. Save this file with extension .csv. After entering all the details about products in the spreadsheet, you can import product reviews to your online store.

It also supports Cron Job (WordPress scheduled task) to schedule importing and exporting of products reviews into an FTP location in a specific time interval automatically.

To configure product reviews import and export, read this article on How to import and export product reviews using WooCommerce Product Reviews Import Export Plugin?.

Settings

The Settings tab helps in auto-exporting and/or auto-importing products, as well as reviews through FTP. You need to provide your FTP information, time period, and mapping file information among other settings.

Product Import export FTP settings

The following are the settings in this section:

  • FTP Settings for Import/Export Products: These settings are used to configure FTP settings for importing and exporting products automatically (also known as Cron job). Enable this option to display further settings.

FTP Settings for Import/Export products

It contains the following settings:

  1. Enable FTP – Check this option to enable FTP settings for product import/export.
  2. FTP Server Host/IP – Enter your FTP Server hostname.
  3. FTP User Name – Enter your FTP username.
  4. FTP Password – Enter your FTP password.
  5. FTP Port – Enter your FTP port number.
  6. Use FTPS – Check this option to use FTPS. FTPS (File Transfer Protocol Secure) is a secured extension of FTP (File Transfer Protocol).
  7. Test FTP – Click on this to check whether your FTP connection is working fine or not.
  8. Export Path – Here you can specify the path where the exported file will be saved on the server.
  9. Export Filename – This section allows you to enter the name the exported file will be saved with.
  10. Automatically Export Products – Enable this option to configure the automatic export of products.
  11. Convert Shortcodes to HTML – Enable this check-box to convert shortcodes to HTML in the CSV.
  12. Product Categories – This field allows you to enter the categories of the products only which will be exported.
  13. Export Start Time – Enter the start time for export. You can enter a time value like 10:10am.
  14. Export Interval [Minutes] – Enter the time interval in minutes for exporting the products.
  15. Include hidden meta data – Check this box to include hidden metadata in the CSV file.
  16. Select an export mapping file – Allows you to select a required export mapping file from the given drop-down list. This field is only available if you have already saved an export mapping file in a prior export.
  17. Automatically Import Products – Enable this option to configure the automatic import of products.
  18. Import File – Enter the complete path on the server of the CSV file to be imported.
  19. Delimiter – In this field, enter the type of the delimiter that the importing CSV file is using.
  20. Import Start Time – Enter the start time for import. You can enter a time value like 10:10am.
  21. Import Interval [Minutes] – Enter the time interval in minutes for importing the products.
  22. Merge Products if exist – Check this option to merge existing products with updated information of the product in the import file. The merging of the product is possible only if the product ID or SKU already exists in your online store. Otherwise, the product is imported as a new product.
  23. Skip new product: If a new product SKU is encountered in the imported CSV file, it will be skipped, and only the existing products will be updated.
  24. Delete existing products: Checking this option will delete the products from the store that are not present in the importing CSV file.
  25. Use SKU to link up-sells and cross-sells: Check this option to link up-sells and cross-sells using the SKU of the product.
  26. New product status: You can change the status of all the products being imported to the status specified in this field (draft/pending/published).
  27. Use SKU to link grouped products: Checking this option will link all the grouped products using the product SKU instead of the product ID.
  28. Select a mapping file – Allows you to select a required import mapping file from the given drop-down list.
  • FTP Settings for Import/Export Reviews: These settings are used to configure FTP settings for importing and exporting reviews automatically (also known as Cron job). Enable this option to reveal further settings.

FTP Settings for import/export reviews

It contains the following settings:

  1. Enable FTP – Check this option to enable FTP settings for product import/export.
  2. FTP Server Host/IP – Enter your FTP Server hostname.
  3. FTP User Name – Enter your FTP username.
  4. FTP Password – Enter your FTP password.
  5. FTP Port – Enter your FTP port number.
  6. Use FTPS – Check this option to use FTPS. FTPS (File Transfer Protocol Secure) is a secured extension of FTP (File Transfer Protocol).
  7. Test FTP – Click to check whether your FTP connection is working fine or not.
  8. Export Path – Here you can specify the path where the exported CSV file will be saved.
  9. Export Filename – This field allows you to specify the name of the exported CSV file.
  10. Automatically Export Reviews – Enable this option to configure automatic export of reviews.
  11. Export Start Time – Enter the start time for export. You can enter a time value like 10:10am.
  12. Export Interval [Minutes] – Enter the time interval in minutes for exporting the reviews.
  13. Automatically Import Reviews – Enable this option to configure automatic import of reviews.
  14. Import Start Time – Enter the start time for import. You can enter a time value like 10:10am.
  15. Import Interval [Minutes] – Enter the time interval in minutes for importing the reviews.
  16. Merge Reviews if exist – Check this option to merge the existing review with an updated review of the same product.
  • URL Settings for Import Products – This option allows you to automatically import products (also known as Cron job) from the specified URL.

URL Settings for import products

It contains the following settings:

  1. Enable URL Import – Check this option to enable settings for importing products using URL.
  2. Import URL – Enter the URL path of the CSV file to be imported.
  3. Delimiter – Enter the delimiter the CSV file to be imported is using.
  4. Import Start Time – Enter the start time for import. You can enter a time value like 10:10am.
  5. Import Interval [Minutes] – Enter the time interval in minutes for importing the products.
  6. Merge Products if exists – Check this option to merge existing products with updated information of the product in the import file. The merging of the product is possible only if the product ID or SKU already exists in your online store. Otherwise, the product is imported as a new product.
  7. Skip New Product –  If a new product SKU is encountered in the imported CSV file, it will be skipped, and only the existing products will be updated.
  8. Delete existing products – Check this option to delete the products from the store that does not exist in the CSV.
  9. Select a mapping file –  Allows you to select a required import mapping file from the given drop-down list.

Finally, click  Save Settings to save the settings.

For more information on Cron Job, read Setting Up Cron Job for WooCommerce Product Import and Export.

Tools to reset WooCommerce Products

Go to Dashboard > WooCommerce > Status > Tools section.

In this section, there are four options that are provided by our WooCommerce Product Import Export plugin. They are used for deletion of all products and reviews, allowing you to start all over again.

They are as shown below:Tools to reset WooCommerce products

 

  • Delete Orphans: To delete variations which have no parent.
  • Delete Products: To delete all products of your store, allowing you to start afresh.
  • Delete Variations: To delete all product variations.
  • Delete Product Reviews: To delete all product reviews.

Check out the features of Product Import Export Plugin For WooCommerce here.

For more understanding of the plugin, check out the product documentation section.

The Best Product Import Export Plugin for WooCommerce

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