Users on the Bronze plan and higher can import orders via CSV (or via tab-delineated value files) into a manual store. This is useful if you are keeping track of orders in a spreadsheet, or exporting orders from a selling channel ShipStation does not yet integrate with. Most shopping carts and marketplaces will allow you to export your orders into either a CSV or tab-delineated value format.
Here's a short video demonstrating the process (step-by-step instructions follow below):
There are a few things to consider before importing your orders via a CSV:
- Best practice is for Row 1 of your CSV to include your order heading columns (like Customer Name, Address, Order number, etc).
Your CSV headings do not need to match ShipStation’s. You will “map” them to the corresponding ShipStation values during the import process. If you'd like to see a full list of the fields available for you, and which ones are required, you can take a look at the PDF at the bottom of this page.
- The column used in your file for Order Numbers must contain a value - either your own custom order number or the word “AUTO” (which will tell ShipStation to auto number your orders). All other fields are optional.
- All order numbers should be unique, to both other orders in the CSV and other orders within your ShipStation Manual Store.
If an order number in your CSV matches an order already existing in your manual store in ShipStation, ShipStation will update that existing order to match the data for the corresponding order in the CSV.
ShipStation can auto-number your orders if you configure the store to do this, and use “AUTO” as the value in your Order Number column.
- ShipStation will combine rows using the same order number into a single order. For example, two rows in a CSV with order number SH1001 will result in a single order SH1001 in ShipStation. This is useful for orders that have multiple items.
Importing Your Orders via CSV
When you're ready to import, head to the Orders tab.
Click on the Other Actions drop-down and select Import Orders.
In the Import Orders popup, click +Select File.
Locate the document containing your orders and click Open.
You'll then see the file name listed in the upper right-hand corner of the popup window, like this:
Next, select the Store you want to import these orders into. This step is important, as once the import starts, these orders cannot be moved to another store!
Field Mappings are how you tell ShipStation which data goes to which ShipStation fields. If this is your first import, choose the Create a new field mapping option.
Finally, set the File Format to match the format of your uploaded file (CSV or tab-delimited), select whether the file has column names at the top, and then click Upload and Continue.
(Most character sets used will be "UTF-8". If you aren't sure which set to use, "UTF-8" or "ANSI", go with "UTF-8").
The next screen prompts you to map your CSV headers to their corresponding fields in ShipStation.
You can map as much, or as little, information as you like, but the Order # field is required by ShipStation.
Once you've mapped all the fields you want to map, you have the option to save the settings for future imports (recommended).
To save the settings, simply name the mapping.
Now, click Start Import.
Once ShipStation has finished the import process, your orders will be visible in the Awaiting Shipment section of your orders screen, in the Manual Store you chose during the import process.
Updating an order via CSV
Keep in mind, if you are using this import to update orders, ShipStation will update all new information from the file. For example, if you initially imported order #12345 with the following information:
But, you realize you needed a SKU for the order. You will need to update the SKU column and retain ALL other existing order information, like this:
If you try to update an order with a new file that only includes the Order # and SKU, like this:
Then the resulting order will only include the Order # and SKU, and all the other data will be overridden with blank fields. Meaning, the name and address information would be blank!
With this in mind, if you need to remove data from an order, you can delete the data from the cell in the CSV and reimport the file!
If you'd like a pre-formatted CSV, you can download the Import Template at the bottom of this article, or from the Order Import window’s "Download a sample CSV file" link.
If you finish your import and notice that some data is missing from your orders...
- Check your saved field mapping. You may have missed mapping one of your fields to the corresponding field in ShipStation. If this is the case, edit the field mapping and save it under a NEW name, being sure to use the new field mapping for your imports going forward.
If you receive an error when attempting to import a CSV...
- Make sure your fields do not include any invalid or special characters. Typically, dashes and periods are fine, but currency symbols, accent marks, and the like, can cause the import to fail. Also, check the type of characters in certain fields. For example, letters are not valid characters for phone numbers. The @ symbol is fine in the email fields, but may cause issues in other fields.