Import Data FAQ

This article answers some of the frequently asked questions (FAQ) about Kindful's Import Data Tool.


Kindful's Import Data tool allows you to easily add your data collected historically and/or outside of Kindful into your account. Read through these FAQs below to learn more about this process.

Linked Articles:

- Preparing Your Data for Import

- Using the Import Data Tool

Where can I find the CSV templates for the Import Tool?

These are located within Kindful when you begin the process of an Import job. Once you choose the type of import you wish to perform, you will be provided with links to download the corresponding template(s).

Where can I find a list of instructions on how to use the tool?

See our guide on Using the Import Data Tool that is full of how-to's with imagery and GIFs. We also offer a free webinar on how to use this tool every Wednesday. Visit our knowledge base and click the icon to sign up for a webinar.

How many files can I import simultaneously on the same import job? 

We suggest using as few files as possible. But, do keep in mind that you can upload Contacts and Transactions and link the records across the files with a Contact ID, so our tool does support multiple files per import. 

How long should an import take?

Depending on the amount of imported data (think in terms of how many rows are on the files), the initial import to sandbox could take up to an hour to process before it’s ready for review. In most cases, however, it should take significantly less time than that. If it has taken more than an hour, feel free to reach out to for assistance, and our team can help you troubleshoot the issue.

If I don't have certain fields of information in my CSV that are included on the template, should I delete the column or just leave it blank?

You can use either approach here. If you are using our templates to import your CSV, having a blank column will have no negative impact. 

Can I import to existing contact custom fields? 

Yes, you can. When importing a Contact Custom Field via a CSV, if the Contact Custom Field (column) matches by name to an already-existing Contact Custom Field in your Kindful production account, the field is not duplicated and the data is added to the existing field.

The matching logic here is not case sensitive, and extraneous and incidental spaces will be ignored so we can properly match. If multiple custom fields exist with the same name, the import tool will attempt to match to the field that was created first. We recommend making sure there are no duplicate custom field names prior to import.

When updating a custom field that is set as a select or multi-select type, we will add the new answer values to the existing select options. Likewise, if the answer value already exists, we will not duplicate it.

Can I import to existing campaign (transaction) custom fields? 

Yes, you can. When importing a Campaign Custom Field via a CSV, if the Campaign Custom Field (column) matches by name to an already-existing Campaign Custom Field in your Kindful production account, the field is not duplicated and the data is added to the existing field. 

The matching logic with campaign custom fields is case sensitive.

I imported a contact with only a postal code. This was a part of a "Transactions Only" (Update style) import. When reviewing the contact in Sandbox, the contact had Address, City, and State filled in as well. These fields matched that of the contact in Production. 

Is it expected that Sandbox would include any information for the matching contact beyond what was included in the import file?

Append style imports will pull current contact information from Production and show you what the Contact will look like in Production.

What about custom fields? If I am appending custom fields, should I expect to see the already existing custom fields (in my live account prior to importing) represented in Sandbox?

No, sandbox does not carry over existing custom fields or custom field formatting. As long as the custom field names match exactly, they will update the corresponding fields in your live Kindful account. These fields will maintain the previously set formatting in your live production account, as well (select, etc.).

How can I find the newly added data that was created by the Import Tool?

We have two filters that can be used post-import to find contacts and activities created by an import. 

  1. Contacts Created By Import (Contacts page)
  2. Activities Created by Import (Activities page)

Using the import job id (found under “Import Job Id” column in the Completed Imports Table on Sandbox), these two filters will return all new contacts and/or activities (transaction, soft credits, etc) that were created by an import.


How does the import data tool handle currencies?

The import data tool will import all of your transactions from your CSV file into the default currency of your account. The default currency can be set in two ways:

  1. The currency will be set by the default currency of your connected gateway (e.g. Stripe). So if your default currency for your Stripe account is CAD, your Kindful account will default to CAD.
  2. Our engineering team can manually set the default currency on your account. But do keep in mind that if you do this for you, and you connect a Stripe account that is set to a different currency that our team set for you, your Kindful account will default to whatever the Stripe account is set to.

What if I need to import Notes, Soft Credits, Pledges, Non Cash Gifts, Relationships, or other types of data not seen in the templates? 

If you need to schedule a custom import for this data, you will want to contact our Services team.

How can I most seamlessly add imported contacts into a group?

In this case, use the "Contacts Created By Import" filter on the Contacts page to find these. From there, you could use the "Select All" button and add the contacts to your desired group. 

To use the filter, you would copy/paste the import job ID into the filter as the answer value. You can find this in your Import Data page. 

I used the Contact and Transactions CSV option to import data and imported my contacts first followed by a separate import of my transactions. The Contact ID does not seem to be relevant on my second import of transactions. Is this how to use the templates?

This import option (Contacts and Transactions) does use two templates provided in the Import Data flow - one for contacts and one for transactions. These two separate templates must both be uploaded in the same import and imported on the same import job (upload two files). For the contact ID, you choose this; it is an arbitrary ID you create. It can be as simple as repeating the contact's name. This will associate the donors from the transactions file with the donors on the contacts file.

If you uploaded the contacts separately without uploading a transactions file on the same import job, you can use the "Transactions Only (for existing contacts)" option and template. This will link the transactions to the contacts already in Kindful. 

The first name, last name, and email for the contacts in the import template will need to exactly match what is already in the existing contact profiles in Kindful that were created from the first import. If any of these pieces are missing or don't exactly match, then duplicate contacts may be created. 

Still have questions?

Feel free to send our support team an email, or you can call the phone number found in the lower left hand corner of your Kindful Admin account to speak to a team member.

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