CRM Business Suite - Import from a CSV textile

Web page content is valid for : CRM Business Notes 3.4.8+ and CRM direct 1.0

Importing contact data from a CSV-File


In case that many contacts needs be imported Business Notes offers a very efficient instrument of importing 'bulk'-data via CSV-Files.


Steps of importing from a CSV-File:


1. Create the contact data in MS-Excel or OpenOffice

2. Export the Excel-content to an appropiate CSV-File

3. Transfer the CSV-File to the Business Notes iTunes folder

4. Import the CSV-File


1.Create the contact data in MS-Excel or OpenOffice


The most common way of creating contact data is using Microsoft Excel or a compatible 'Open Source' application, like OpenOffice.


We recommend to use the attached Excel-Templates. This templates are 'ready-to-use' without having any concerns about appropiate structures or field names. (if you decide to create your own template you must ensure the exact field names, the number of rows and the exact order of rows - otherwise the import will fail).


The content of the contact fields must not contain any characters which are used by the system to read and split the file. Such characters are: ',' comma  and ';' semicolon.


Excel-Template for Contact Data (2.5.0 to 3.0.0)
Microsoft Excel Tabelle 7.0 KB

The structure, the field names or the file name BN_Addresses are immutable and must not be changed. A single exmaple entry should guide you through the field input.

2.Export the Excel-content to an appropiate CSV-File


Once you've created your content you need to save it as CSV-File - a comma/semicolon separated textfile.


Go to your 'save as ... ' menu item and select the standard CSV-Format and the filename 'BN_Addresses.csv' as shown:  



Export to CSV-Format
Export to CSV-Format


If you're using an original MS-Excel you're almost done.


With other application you be asked to specify the delimiter - choose then the semicolon (;) or the comma (,). Don't use other delimiters or other CSV-formats (like MSDOS-CSV, MAC-CSV).

3.Transfer the CSV-File to the Business Notes iTunes folder


The import into Business Notes starts with giving the iPad the CSV-File BN_Addresses.csv. As already described for PDFs you can do this a) by eMail or b) copying the iPad iTunes folder.


Business Notes is accounted to import CSV-files from every other iOS-Application which provides an 'Open-In' function (i.e. Mail, Dropbox etc). When you tap the Business Notes icon in the 'Open-In' menu the CSV goes to the System-Filemanager.


The other way of importing CSV-files is the iTunes folder option. Connect your device and copy the file BN_Addresses.csv into the iTunes folder of your device.


4.Import the CSV-File


Within the System-Filemanager go to 'Import-CSV' and tap the Import-Symbol on BN_Addresses.csv .


When you have created the file out of MS-Excel or an other compatible application by selecting a CSV character set 'Windows 1252' or 'WinLatin1' then hit the 'Microsoft Excel' button in the appearing menu.


If you have created a plain text file from an texteditor using UTF-8 string encoding use the button 'other UTF8-Formats'.




In our test the import will durate approx. 5 seconds on 1,000 data records, depending on the complexity of the imported data. After the import is finished a message box will informing you about the numbers of imported record and possible duplicates.




  • due to the iPad memory limitations the number of records to be imported should not exceed 500. If you have more customers shrink the CSV-file to a smaller size.
  • csv creation on a MS-Excel based system should take care about the Windows 1252/WinLatin 1 character set
  • csv creation from a textbased system should use a plain UTF8-String encoding format



Disclaimer: it's the users responsibility to create and maintain a CSV-File which matches the recommended requirements with regard to the character set and the limit of records to be imported.