Knowledgebase: General
How do I import Categories via CSV?

With 3dcart, you can import your store's category structure with a simple CSV file. You can also export your store's existing category structure as needed through CSV file format.

Importing New Categories

To import new categories to your store, you will need to create a CSV file with the following column header:

category_name

You can also download a clean category import CSV file by clicking here.

Within the CSV file, populate the category_name column with your category structure.

Note
To designate parent categories and their subcategories, please use a forward slash (/) to separate them so that the column contains "parent category/sub category"

Here's an example of a created import CSV ready for upload.

Additional Information
In the illustrated example above, we used the forward slash to denote parent and sub categories. By following this format, the import file will create the following category structure:

  • Clothing
    • Men
    • Women
    • Children
      • Boys
      • Girls
  • Shoes
    • Men & Boys
    • Women & Girls
  • Accessories
    • Jewelry
    • Eyewear
    • Ties and Scarfs

When you are done creating the CSV file, save it on your computer (be sure to keep the file as a CSV and not XLS). Once the file is saved you can import it to your store.

  1. Log into your 3dcart Online Store Manager
  2. Using the left hand navigation menu, go to Products ->Product List
  3. While viewing the Product List, look to the top right of the page and click on the "Export/Import" button
  4. Under the Import section (on the right hand side of the page), click on the + icon next to "Categories"

Once you're there, use the "browse" button to locate the file on your computer and click "Import Data" to have it uploaded to your store.

Upon import, you will be given the following two choices:

  • Insert Only
    The file will be used to insert all records that are not yet on your store.
    Since this is an import of new categories, you will want to select this one.
  • Update Only
    The file will be used to update records that are already found on your store.
    This is more applicable to updating catgories via CSV (See next section)

Export Existing Categories

You can also use CSV to update your store's existing categories. This is useful if you need to change the name of the category, or some other parameter of the categories and their settings.

The best way to begin this process is to export your store's existing categories. To do this:

  1. Log into your 3dcart Online Store Manager
  2. Using the left hand navigation menu, go to Products ->Product List
  3. While viewing the Product List, look to the top right of the page and click on the "Export/Import" button
  4. Under the Export section (on the left hand side of the page), click on the + icon next to "Categories"
  5. Click on the "Export Data" button

The store software will generate a CSV file of your current categories so you can download it to your computer. This file can then be edited with whatever updates are needed.

Category Update CSV Column Headers

Here is the list of column headers contained in the category CSV export file and how they correlate to the category settings in the Online Store Manager.

Additional Information
In the following section, we will list the columns present in the category CSV file as it would appear when you export it from your store.

Keep in mind however, that the exported category CSV file will contain some columns that are for legacy functions no longer used by the store software. In the list below, we'll mark these in red along with any notes pertaining to these legacy columns.

Additionally, there will be some column headers that are used for optional 3dcart plugins available for purchase. Therefore, the columns (although present in the export) may not necessarily be used by your store and may be removed altogether. In the list below, we'll mark these optional plugin headers in blue

You can also click here for a clean update import CSV containing the necessary columns for import.

  • id
    This is the database ID number of the category and it is assigned by the store's software.
    There is no need to edit this column at all.
  • category_name
    This is the name of the category as it will appear on your store front.
  • category_description
    This column will contain any description written for the category.
    Note that this will only be applicable for sub categories.
  • category_main (legacy function)
    This is no longer used and may be left blank
    On your exported CSV file it may say either TRUE or FALSE, but it is no longer used.
  • category_parent
    This column correlates to the ID column for the category.
    If the category is a parent category, then the cell will need to be populated with a zero
    If the category is a sub category, then the cell will need to be populated with that parent category's ID number from the first column.
  • category_header
    This column will contain the category's header from the "Page Content" area of the category in the admin
  • category_footer
    This column will contain the category's footer from the "Page Content" area of the category in the admin
  • category_title
    This column will be for the category's Title as entered in the SEO Title and Meta Tags area of the category in the admin
  • category_meta
    This column will be for the category's meta tags as entered in the SEO Title and Meta Tags area of the category in the admin
  • sorting
    This column will let you update the order in which the categories are displayed on your store.
    Higher numbers are shown farther on the list.
  • numtolist
    This correlates to the "Items per page / Category General Items" field in the category's Page Settings section of the admin
  • displaytype
    This correlates to the "Display Type / Category General Products" dropdown in the category's Page Settings section of the admin.
    This is a numerical value that determines which of the drop down options is used:
    • 0 is equal to Thumbnails
    • 1 is equal to Listing
    • 2 is equal to Details
  • columnum
    This correlates to the "Product Columns / Category General Items" field in the category's Page Settings section of the admin
  • iconimage
    Here you can set the path to the category icon used on the category
    Note: this is only applicable to sub-categories.
  • special_numtolist
    This correlates to the "Items per page / Category Special Items" field in the categoy's Page Settings section of the admin
  • special_displaytype
    This correlates to the "Display Type / Category Special Items" dropdown in the category's Page Settings section of the admin.
    This is a numerical value that determines which of the drop down options is used:
    • 0 is equal to Thumbnails
    • 1 is equal to Listing
    • 2 is equal to Details
  • special_columnum
    This correlates to the "Product Columns / Category Specials" field in the category's Page Settings section of the admin
  • category_columnum
    Correlates to the "Template / Category Page" style selected for the category in the category's Page Settings section of the admin
    This is dependent on you having alternate category_x.html uploaded to your theme's folder.
    The style selected will correspond to the template used.
    For example:
    • Style 1 is equal to category_0.html
    • Style 2 is equal to category_1.html
    • Style 3 is equal to category_2.html
  • category_displaytype
    Correlates to the styling template used for the category as selected in the "Template / Product Page"
  • related_displaytype
    This correlates to the "Display Type / Related Items" dropdown in the category's Product Display section of the admin.
    This is a numerical value that determines which of the drop down options is used:
    • 0 is equal to Thumbnails
    • 1 is equal to Listing
    • 2 is equal to Details
  • related_columnum
    This correlates to the "Product Columns / Related Products" field in the categoy's Page Settings section of the admin
  • listing_displaytype
    Correlates to the "Template / Category Page" style selected for the category in the category's Product Display section of the admin
    This is dependent on you having alternate listing_x.html uploaded to your theme's folder.
    The style selected will correspond to the template used.
    For example:
    • Style 1 is equal to listing_0.html
    • Style 2 is equal to listing_1.html
    • Style 3 is equal to listing_2.html
  • hide
    This column will let you mark the category as hidden.
    This is a numerical value of 1 or zero
    • 0 = Not hidden/Visible
    • 1 = Hidden
  • category_defaultsorting
    This correlates to the "Default Products Sorting" dropdown in the category's Page Settings section of the admin.
    This is a numerical value that determines which of the drop down options is used:
    • 0 is equal to Default Sorting
    • 1 is equal to Price: Low to High
    • 2 is equal to Price: High to Low
    • 3 is equal to Name
    • 4 is equal to Newest
    • 5 is equal to Oldest
    • 6 is equal to Stock: Low to High
    • 7 is equal to Stock: High to Low
    • 8 is equal to "Custom Field 1" (if used)
    • 9 is equal to "Custom Field 2 " (if used)
    • 10 is equal to "Custom Field 3 " (if used)
    • 11 is equal to "Custom Field 4 " (if used)
    • 12 is equal to "Custom Field 5 " (if used)
    • 13 is equal to Avg Review
    • 14 is equal to Review Count
    • 15 is equal to Free Shipping
    • 16 is equal to On Sale
  • userid
    This is typically the username of the admin user which made the lat edit to the category.
    For importing updates, it may be left blank
  • last_update
    This is a timestamp created by the software to indicate the last update of the category.
    For importing updates, it may be left blank
  • itemicon (legacy function)
    This is no longer used and may be left as a zero (0)
  • redirectto
    This correlates to the "On Fail Redirect to" field in the categoy's Page Settings section of the admin
  • accessgroup
    This correlates to the "Allow Access" field in the categoy's Page Settings section of the admin
    This is a numerical value that determines which of the drop down options is used:
    • 0 is equal to All
    • -1 is equal to Registered Users

Additional Information
As mentioned above, for the access group setting, 0 and -1 are for all or registered users. However, you can also limit the access to a specific customer group by using that group's respective ID.

  • link
    Correlates to the "Link" field of the category's settings in the admin
    This is only to be used if you would like for the category link to open up a page other than the actual category.
    (i.e. to direct to a different page or site)
  • link_target
    If using the link option mentioned above, this column will let you determine if the link will open up in the same browser tab or open a new page.
  • upsellitems_displaytype
    This correlates to the "Display Type / Up-sell Items" dropdown in the category's Product Display section of the admin.
    This is a numerical value that determines which of the drop down options is used:
    • 0 is equal to Thumbnails
    • 1 is equal to Listing
    • 2 is equal to Details
  • upsellitems_columnum
    This correlates to the "Product Columns / Up-sell Products" field in the category's Product Display section of the admin
  • filename
    If using Custom File Names, this correlates to the "Custom File Name" field in the category's SEO Title and Meta Tags seciton of the admin.
  • isFilter (used by Purchased Add-on)
    If using the Category Filters add-on, this column will denote if the category is a filter or not.
    This will be a toggle value using either zero (0) or one (1).
    • 0 equals no
    • 1 equals yes
  • keywords
    This will correlate to the "Additional Keywords" section of the category's settings page in the admin.
  • smartcategory
    If using the SmartCategory™ function, this will denote if the category is a smart category or not.
    This will be a numerical value corresponding to the options in the SmartCategory drop down menu:
    • 0 = None
    • 1 = On Sale Items
    • 2 = Free Shipping Items
    • 3 = Top 50 New Releases
    • 4 = Keyword Search
  • smartcategory_keyword
    If using the Keyword Search option for SmartCategories (see above), this column will be the Search Keyword used.
  • hide_left
    This correlates to the "Hide Left Bar" checkbox in the category's Page Settings section of the admin.
    This is a toggle value using either zero (0) or one (1).
    • 0 equals no
    • 1 equals yes
  • hide_right
    This correlates to the "Hide Right Bar" checkbox in the category's Page Settings section of the admin.
    This is a toggle value using either zero (0) or one (1).
    • 0 equals no
    • 1 equals yes
  • hide_framemenu
    This correlates to the "Hide Top Menu" checkbox in the category's Page Settings section of the admin.
    This is a toggle value using either zero (0) or one (1).
    • 0 equals no
    • 1 equals yes
  • homespecial (used by Purchased Add-on)
    If using the Featured Home Page Categories add-on, this column will denote if the category is displayed as a featured home page category.
    This will be a toggle value using either zero (0) or one (1).
    • 0 equals no
    • 1 equals yes
  • dynamic_filter (used by Purchased Add-on)
    If using the Dynamic Category Filters add-on, this column will denote if the category is a dynamic filter or not.
    This will be a toggle value using either zero (0) or one (1).
    • 0 equals no
    • 1 equals yes
  • menu_group
    If using the FRAME_CATEGORY_X function, this column will let you denote the Category Menu Group used by the category
  • extra_field_1 (legacy function)
    This is no longer used and may be left blank or removed.

After you have edited the CSV file's content save it (be sure to save it as a CSV and not an XLS file), you may then upload it back to your store using the following steps:

  1. Log into your 3dcart Online Store Manager
  2. Using the left hand navigation menu, go to Products ->Product List
  3. While viewing the Product List, look to the top right of the page and click on the "Export/Import" button
  4. Under the Import section (on the right hand side of the page), click on the + icon next to "Categories"

Once you're there, use the "browse" button to locate the file on your computer and click "Import Data" to have it uploaded to your store.

Upon import, you will be given the following two choices:

  • Insert Only
    The file will be used to insert all records that are not yet on your store.
    Since this is not an import of new categories, you don't want to select this one.
  • Update Only
    The file will be used to update records that are already found on your store.
    This is more applicable to updating catgories via CSV so you'll want to select this one.

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