Contact Import

Bulk import your contacts to ISMessenger platform so you can start a conversation with them

What is Contact Import?

Contact Import allows you to add multiple contacts to the platform by uploading a CSV file populated with contact rows. Contact import is useful for the following reason:-

  1. Sync a Contact List to the platform Syncing your Contact List with the platform helps you identify Contacts when they message you.

  2. Bulk update Contacts on the platform Update the information of multiple existing Contacts on the platform instead of updating them one by one.

  3. Initiate a conversation with the Contact Start conversations with Contacts in your Contact List without needing them to send you the first message.

Once you have configured the import, click Next.

Importing Contacts

Part 1: Initiate a Contact Import

To import contacts, you need to upload a CSV file. Each row in your CSV file represents a contact and each column represents a contact field.

1. Initiate the Import

Navigate to Contacts Module

Press on the arrow in the ADD CONTACT button and select Import Contact.

Navigate to Data Import

Alternatively, initiate an import in Settings > Data Import and click the IMPORT CONTACTS button. .

2. Upload a CSV file Upload a CSV file with the contacts and details that you would like to import. Ensure the CSV file fulfills the following requirements:

  • Only CSV files are accepted for import

  • File size must be less than 20MB

  • File must contain a least one row

  • File can contain a maximum of 200,000 rows

  • A First Name column is required to add new Contacts

  • At least one column must be mapped to an identifier (except for Add All Contacts Despite Duplicates imports).

  • Recommended format for phone numbers: Include "+" sign and country code. e.g. +60189988776

For an example of a populated CSV file, download the sample by clicking on the hyperlink.

3. Select Import Purpose

Select the import purpose for this file..

Add New Contacts Only

Adds only new Contacts in the CSV file to the Workspace.

Update Existing Contacts Only

Updates only existing Contacts in the Workspace with values from the file.

Add and Update Contacts

Updates existing Contacts and adds new Contacts to the Workspace.

Add All Contacts Despite Duplicates

All Contacts in the file will be treated as new Contacts. You can review and merge duplicate Contacts manually on the platform.

4. Select Identifier

Select an identifying value to recognize existing Contacts. The identifier can be a phone number or an email address. If your import purpose is "Update Existing Contacts Only", you can also select Contact ID as an identifier.

The identifier’s value and format have to be identical in the CSV file and the Workspace for the Contact to be correctly identified. If the values differ, the Contact will be treated as a new Contact.

For example, if a Contact in the Workspace has the phone number +60101010101 but their phone number in the CSV file is missing the area code, it will be added as a new Contact during the import.

5. Add Tags

You can add tags for all Contacts that are being added to or updated on the Workspace. An import tag will be generated automatically to identify each import batch. This tag can be removed.

Once you have configured the import, click Next

Part 2: Map CSV Headers to Contact Fields

Map the column headers in the CSV file to Contact Fields in your Workspace. This determines which Contact Field will be updated with a column’s values. If a column header in the file perfectly matches a Contact Field name (eg. Phone Number), it will be mapped automatically.

Ensure that the defined identifier is mapped. Each Contact Field can only be mapped once.

If you wish to skip a column so its values are not imported, uncheck the checkbox on its left. A minimum of one column must be selected to proceed with the import.

Do Not Overwrite

For "Update Existing Contacts Only" or "Add and Update Contacts" imports, a Do Not Overwrite option will appear in Mapping.

By default, a value in the CSV file will replace the corresponding existing field value in your Workspace.

If an existing Contact Field has a value but the new data is empty, allowing an overwrite will delete the existing value so it is empty. To retain existing field values and only update fields that are empty with new values, check the Do Not Overwrite checkbox.

Likewise, existing Tags will be removed and replaced by new Tags by default. To retain existing Tags, check the Do Not Overwrite checkbox so these are retained and new Tags are added. e.g. Contact A in your Workspace has the email In the uploaded CSV file, Contact A is identified by their phone number and has the email address

If the checkbox is unchecked (default), the existing value will be overwritten and Contact A’s email will be updated to

If the checkbox is checked, the existing value will not be overwritten and Contact A’s email will remain as

When the columns have been mapped, click Next.

Part 3: Review Import

The import file will be validated. Larger CSV files will take longer to import.

The number of Contacts that will be added and updated after the import, or skipped due to errors, will be reported. If there are no errors, click IMPORT to proceed.

Rows with errors will not be imported. Click on "Download error file" to download a CSV file with an “Error” column identifying errors in the original rows.

Resolve the errors described in the error messages. When done, upload the corrected CSV file or return to Part 1 to reconfigure the import.

When the file has been validated again and is error-free, click IMPORT to proceed. A dialog will appear to confirm that the import has started.

Check Import Results

You will be notified via email and the notifications center on the platform when the import job has been completed.

You can download the results file from the email or the Import History table in Settings > Data Import. This file will be available for 7 days. The results file will contain 2 additional columns: Import Status and Errors.

The Import Status column can have one of 4 possible statuses:

Import StatusResult


Contact was added successfully


Contact was updated successfully


Contact was skipped based on import purpose (eg new Contact in an Update Existing Contacts Only import)


Contact wasn’t imported due to error(s)

The Errors column will flag rows with errors detected during the import. Contacts in these rows were not imported. To import these Contacts, resolve the errors and retry.

Frequently Asked Questions

How many files I can import at a time?

You can only import one file per import.

Why am I unable to start a new import?

Only one import job can be in progress at a time. Kindly wait until the import job is completed before starting a new one.

What does the “Session expired” error mean?

You have a 1-hour window to proceed with an import job. If an import is not started within 1 hour at the Review stage, it will be automatically canceled and you will need to restart the import process.

What if there are two Contacts with the same identifier in the CSV file?

Both Contact rows in the CSV file will be flagged in the Errors column of the error file. Their values will not be added to or updated on the Workspace.

What if there are two existing Contacts with the same identifier in the Workspace?

If multiple contacts share an identifier value in the Workspace (e.g. duplicate Contact profiles or a shared email address or phone number used by two Contacts), an error will be indicated in the row with the same value in the CSV file.

Are Tags compulsory for Contact imports?

No, they are not. You can add, update and remove Tags as you wish.

An import Tag will be automatically generated for every import to identify which Contacts were added or updated during the import. This Tag is optional and can be removed.

Why are some existing Contacts not identified by the phone number identifier?

The phone number format has to be identical in the CSV file and Workspace for the number to be identified. If the same phone number has different formats (eg. one is missing an area code), the existing Contact cannot be identified and the Contact in the file will be treated as a new Contact.

If you are trying to update existing Contacts only, this Contact will be skipped.

If you are trying to upload new Contacts, a new Contact profile will be created for this Contact.

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