SugarCRM provides an easy way to import data and records into a variety of available built-in modules. This process is all handled by the Import Wizard that will guide users on how to import the file, match the columns to their appropriate fields, or even updating records with more current information.

Importing data into Sugar is a very important process for both new and experienced users of Sugar. Depending on your business needs, you may be required to import data as much as once a week down to only a few times a year, but understanding the process is crucial, but don’t worry, we’re here to help walk you through it.

There are a few guidelines to follow before importing your data into a Sugar instance:

File Types: Sugar commonly accepts files that are followed by a separator such as a comma or tab, which is commonly seen within Comma-Separated Value (or CSV, for short) files. Sugar can accept other file-type formats, as long as it recognizes those separators.

Import Limitations: By default, most Sugar users shouldn’t have a problem importing records into SugarCRM.  There may be limitations imposed if you are on-premise such as file size.  SugarCRM runs on PHP and some server configurations have a file size limitation.  To get around this you can simply break your import file into smaller chunks.

Review Before Importing: Before importing a large amount of records, it’s always best practice to review the information that you’re going to be importing before it’s too late. The rule of thumb here is to try and import at least five records to see if all of the data matches up correctly with the fields within Sugar. You should also keep an eye out for any duplicates that may be found within the file that you’re going to be importing.

Higher Level Records First: If you are going to be importing records that rely on a parent (or higher-level) record, ensure that you are importing these records first before importing the related (or child) records afterward. It is best to always import the Account records first, followed by the Contacts (which rely on the Account record relationship), and any other module records thereafter.

Importing New Records

Let’s now begin with the process of importing records into your Sugar instance. Whether you’re doing a mass import or migrating from another CRM product, the following process will guide you through getting your data into Sugar without having to manually type each one in separately.

After you’ve ensured that your data file is all scrubbed and ready to be imported, navigate to the module tab in Sugar that you wish to import the records into. This will then lead you into the Import Wizard that will help guide you through the rest of the import process.

Import Accounts Menu Link

On this page you have the option to view and download the template which provides you with the format that Sugar reads when reading the data from a file.

Next, select the file you wish to import by clicking on the Choose File button. You will then see a new prompt window asking you to navigate and select the file you wish to import into Sugar.

Select Import File

Below that you will have two options on how you want Sugar to handle the imported data by either simply creating new records or by creating new records and update any records that already do exist inside of Sugar.

What would you like to do with the imported data?

On the next page you have the option to confirm the import file settings to match how Sugar will read the file along with how you have the file formatted.

Import File Properties

You also have the ability to choose a predefined source such as from SalesForce or Microsoft Outlook. In most cases if you are simply importing the file as a standard CSV file from a spreadsheet editor, you would select the “None” radio button.

Import Data Source

Once you have confirmed these settings, you are then greeted to a page where you can match the columns that you have inside of your data file to the fields that are set within Sugar.

Field Mappings

In the next step, Sugar offers the ability to check for any duplicate records along with the option to save these import settings for future use, which can be very useful and save time if the format of your data files remain the same.

Check for Possible Duplicates

Once you’re happy with all of these settings, simply click on the Import Now button at the bottom of the page, and from there you will be greeted with the Confirmation page and an area that will display any errors.

The most commons errors that you will see on the final page are normally related to either the data inside of the import file not matching with what fields are already available inside of Sugar, which is where you will then need to edit the data in the file to match with what you can match it with in Sugar.

That’s all that’s to it! You have now imported records from another source into Sugar without needing to type each one in manually.