How can I import lead databases?

I want to import a database in csv format which contains numerous leads for cold calling. How can I make that work? 

You can import a database of potential customers, for instance in a given sector and region, through a CSV file. The potential customers have to be contacted again individually or through a mass mailing to determine which contacts require further follow-up, so leads will typically be the best place.

Should I import into Leads or Opportunities?

  • Companies may decide to not use leads, but instead to keep all information directly in an opportunity. For some companies, leads are merely an extra step in the sales process. You could call this extended (start from lead) versus simplified (start from opportunity) customer relationship management.
  • Odoo perfectly allows for either one of these approaches to be chosen. If your company handles its sales from opportunities directly, feel free to import your database directly as opportunities.

Start with a list of leads in CSV format, for instance. If your prospects database is provided in another format, you can easily convert it to the CSV format using Microsoft Excel, OpenOffice / LibreOffice Calc, Google Docs, ...

The best thing to do to make sure your import will go smoothly, is to create a test lead and fill all the fields that are in your CSV database. Now export all these required Lead fields using the `Export` function. Make sure to use the Import-compatible Export Type. Select your fields from the Available fields list, and if necessary, save the fields list so that you can use it again for later exports. Note that Blue fields are required for your import.

  • Make sure to add the Type column to your csv to be imported, which will help you indicate whether you import as a Lead (type = Lead) or as an opportunity (type = Opportunity). 

Open the Leads using the menu Sales --> Sales --> Leads. The List view shows two options, i.e. Create and Import, click the Import link and choose the csv file. 

Select your file containing the leads information. By ticking the Track history during import option, the OpenChatter will add the time & user of the import to the lead wall. Click the Validate button if you want to let Odoo check whether everything seems okay. Otherwise, you can directly click the Import button: the same validations will be done. Odoo will automatically map the column headers from your CSV file to the corresponding fields if you tick The first row of the file contains the label of the column option. Of course, you can remap the column headers. If necessary, you can click File Format Options to change the settings so that they match your local settings. 

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