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How To Add Your First Shopify Product Via CSV

A Collection of Shopify Guides

Introduction

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This guide will walk you through the steps of adding product data to the Shopify CSV using the most common settings that we see for an average product.

To follow this guide, you must have some basic product information such as weights and images AND you must have a G Suite account.

Note that your product images must be stored online with a publicly accessible URL.

  • Upload your product CSV to Google Sheets
  • Enter all required data for a single product
  • Enter additional required data for a product with variants
  • Save your CSV file to your computer
  • Import your CSV file to Shopify

Upload your product CSV to Google Sheets

Log in to your Google account

On the Google Sheets page, click Blank in the Start a new spreadsheet section

From the Untitled Spreadsheet page, go to File > Import...

Under Import File, select Upload

Navigate to the folder where you downloaded the CSV, and select the CSV

In the Import file dialogue, select Import action> Replace spreadsheet, Separator character > Detect automatically, and Convert text to numbers and dates > Yes

Click Import

The Google Sheets new document dialogueUploading a CSV to google sheets

Enter all required data for a single product

1. Handle, Title, Body (HTML)

entering handle title and body text into a csv

First, add the Title. The title is the name of your product, keep it simple. Avoid cluttering the title with additional information such as colour/size or product numbers. 

Then, add the Handle. This can be the same as the title but should be all lower-case with dashes "-" instead of spaces.

For the Body (HTML), enter a more in-depth description of the product (4-6 sentences). For now, this can be entered as plain-text. 

If you are an advanced user, you can also add html to this section to add markup for improved information hierarchy.

2. Vendor, Type, Tags, Published

adding vender type and tags to a csv

Under Vendor, enter the name of the company that supplies or manufactures the product. This is especially important if you are selling merchandise from a recognizable brand.

For Type, declare what the product is in the simplest terms possible. A "43 inch LCD TV with 5D display" would just be a TV, or Television.

Under Tags, enter a list of lower case words separated by commas that describe the product.

Note that tags in this context have no impact on SEO. Tags are used to filter your products within your Shopify theme.

Under Published, enter "TRUE"

3. Option 1, Option 2, Option 3

product option default data entered into Shopify CSV

Under Option 1 Name, enter "Title".

Under Option 1 Value, enter "Default Title".

For the Body (HTML), enter a more in-depth description of the product (4-6 sentences). For now, this can be entered as plain-text. 

If you are an advanced user, you can also add html to this section to add markup for improved information hierarchy.

4. Variant SKU, Variant Grams, Variant Inventory Tracker, Variant Inventory Qty, Variant Inventory Policy

variant inventory data

For the Variant SKU, enter your internal stock keeping unit (SKU) for the product. If you do not have internal SKUs, this is a good place to start creating them.

Under Variant Grams, enter the boxed weight of the product in grams.

Under Variant Inventory Tracker, enter "shopify" if you intend to use your website to track inventory. Otherwise, leave this column blank. 

For Variant Inventory Qty, enter the current stock level as a numerical value if you intend to use your website to track inventory. Otherwise, leave this column blank. 

Set Variant Inventory Policy to "continue".

5. Variant Fulfillment Service, Variant Price, Variant Compare At Price

adding product price to a csv

Under Variant Fulfillment Service, enter "manual".

For Variant Price enter the pre-tax price at which you intend to sell the product.

Leave Variant Compare at Price blank for now.

6. Variant Requires Shipping, Variant Taxable, Variant Barcode

Adding shipping method to shopify CSV

Under Variant Requires Shipping, enter "TRUE".

Under Variant Taxable, enter "TRUE".

Under Variant Barcode, enter the bar code for the product, if possible. If you do not have bar codes, then leave this cell blank.

7. Image Src, Image Position, Image Alt Text

adding images to shopify product csv

To add images to your product listing, you must first upload your product images to a website. This can be done through your Shopify dashboard.

Once your images are hosted online, enter the URL for each image under Image Src (1 per row). If you have multiple images for your product, that's great. Just go down a row for each image URL.

Once all image URLs for your product have been entered, number them 1,2,3, etc. top to bottom under Image Position.

Under Image Alt Text, describe each image as thoroughly as possible in up to 16 words.

For more information on adding alt tags, see our guide, How An Agency Adds Alt Tags To Products In Bulk.

8. Gift Card, Variant Image, Variant Weight Unit, Variant Tax Code, Cost Per Item

adding cost of goods to shopify csv

Under Gift Card, enter "FALSE".

Leave Variant Image blank for now.

For Variant Weight Unit, enter "g". 

Leave Variant Tax Code blank for now.

Under Cost per item enter the price you pay for your product, or the cost of producing your product yourself. This will enable useful analytics data once you start selling.

9. Handle (Revisited)

Add product handle to shopify csv

Finally, revisit the Handle column. Each additional image row that you added needs to be associated with your product. To tell Shopify that the additional row(s) still refer to the same product, repeat the same handle that you entered earlier on each row that contains a product image.

Enter additional required data for a product with variants

several fields filled out for product variant in Shopify CSV
Product variants are options that a customer can select before adding your product to their cart. They could be different sizes, colours, materials, etc. Adding a product with variants is almost the same process as adding an individual product. This section focuses on additional information that must be added rather than repeating the steps that you went through above.

1. Option 1, Option 2, Option 3

material variants entered into shopify csv

This time, instead of entering "Title" under Option 1 Name, enter a label for the variant type (ie. Material, Colour, Size).

Then, under Option 1 Value, enter all possible variants for the chosen Title (1 per row).

Up to 2 additional variant types can be added by filling out Option 2 Name + Value, and Option 3 Name + Value, if desired.

2. Variant SKU, Variant Grams, Varient Inventory Tracker, etc.

duplicate variant data entered into CSV

Each column with Variant in the title must be filled out for each variant.

For columns such as Variant SKU and Variant Grams, enter unique data specific to each variant.

For columns such as Variant Inventory Policy, in which you entered a fixed value above, enter the same values as above.

Variant Compare at Price, Variant Inventory Tracker, and Variant Tax Code can remain blank.

3. Image Src, and Image Position

Variant Image Entries for Shopify CSV

The process for adding images to a variant is identical to adding images to a single product.

The row in which an image is added has no correlation to which variant it is associated with.

To associate a specific image with a variant, you must fill out the Variant Image column.

4. Variant Image

Variant Image information added to Shopify CSV

Under Variant Image, enter the URL for the image that best represents each variant.

Note that the URLs entered in this column must also be included as images under the Image Src column.

5. Handle (Revisited Again)

variant handle information in CSV

Filling in the correct number of Handle cells for variants is sometimes confusing to new users.

If your product has more images than variants, repeat the handle for each image row. For example, a product with 3 variants and 5 images would require the handle to be entered 5 times.

If your product has more variants than images, repeat the handle for each variant row. For example, a product with 3 variants and 1 image would require the handle to be entered 3 times.

Save your CSV file to your computer

At the top of the page, select File > Download > Comma-separated values (.csv, current sheet)

Save the file to your computer and note the location of the file

Downloading a CSV from Google Sheets

Import your CSV file to Shopify

From your Shopify admin, go to Products > All products

Click Import

From the dialogue, choose Browse...

Navigate to your CSV file, and select Open

From the dialogue, click the Replace any current products that have the same handle. Existing values will be used for any missing columns. check box

Click Upload file

Feel free to close the window. When your CSV file is successfully uploaded, your store owner will receive a confirmation email


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