May 23, 2023

Importing Data into Salesforce with Cloudingo


Cloudingo’s import tool checks for existing records before importing from a CSV file and merges the data if a match is found. It works with Leads, Contacts, Accounts, Person Accounts, and custom objects enabled for merge. The tool uses rules to determine which data overrides existing records. Before importing, decide how duplicates will be found and merged. Multiple scans can be performed against filters to find all possible matches. The import process has six steps and the Find Data tool can be used to scan a CSV file for potential matches without merging or inserting new records.


1. Open the Import window. Choose the ‘Tools’ → ‘Import’ option in the left-hand navigation window.

2. Choose ‘Start Wizard’ to upload a new file.

3. ‘Automated Import’ and ‘Manage Import Templates’ are available for Professional or Enterprise level licenses and are discussed in the Import Templates article.

4. Choose ‘View’ from a specific import on the far right to get back into an existing upload.

Import Dashboard

Files in the Import dashboard are subject to automatic deletion after 30 days. Should users wish to retain completed imports, they should be exported. Incomplete imports within the wizard should be either completed or deleted. See Import Basics for more information.

To access the Import Settings box and adjust the Import batch size, click on the Settings button located on the right. The default setting is 200.

The batch size determines the number of records submitted to Salesforce in one data chunk. It does not affect the number of records a user can import during the process. Users have the option to submit all records in the file in one job.

It is recommended not to alter these settings unless directed by Cloudingo Support or if the creation of new records results in CPU errors reaching maximum capacity.

The default can only be reduced, not increased. The max is 200.

Step 1: Choose Data


Give the upload a descriptive name.

Salesforce Object:

To import data, select the object you want to use. Options include Lead, Contact, Account, Person Account, and any custom object with dedupe enabled. For a thorough scan of the file against all objects (Contacts/Accounts and Leads), choose “Contact then Lead.”

Record Type:

Select the appropriate option to apply a default record type to newly created records. Note that this only applies if your organization uses record types for the chosen object. If the file includes record types, the column data will precede the default setting when merging or creating new records.

Contact Options:

These options only appear if ‘Contact’ or ‘Contact then Lead’ is chosen as the Salesforce Object.

Import Contacts and Accounts:

Searches for existing Accounts based on Account Name

1. Create account when no matching accounts are found:

Selected by default and recommended. This option appears if ‘Contact’ is chosen as the Salesforce object.

If an Account match is not detected (based on Name + City & State if provided — see Account Options below), and if a new Contact is created, Cloudingo will create both the new Contact and the new Account in Salesforce.

2. Select first account when multiple matching accounts are found:

Selected by default and recommended. This option appears if ‘Contact’ or ‘Contact then Lead’ is chosen as the Salesforce object.

If multiple Accounts match, and a new Contact is made, Cloudingo will put the Contact under the first Account Match found (matched by Name + City & State if given). Refer to Account Options for more information.

3. Update account fields on existing account when only one account found:

This option becomes available when choosing ‘Contact’ or ‘Contact then Lead’ as the Salesforce object. This option updates Account data using values from a file. The update only applies to mapped file data in Account fields. Additionally, it only applies if a matching Account is found.

4. Account Options:

This choice becomes available when either ‘Contact’ or ‘Contact then Lead’ is selected as the Salesforce object.

Cloudingo searches for Accounts by matching Account Name (exact or clean as specified in the drop box) with City & State fields, if available in the file. Customization of Additional Account fields for scanning is available upon request from our development team. Please get in touch with your designated Account Representative for further information.

During Step 6 of the import process, if there is no match for a Contact but there is a match for an Account, the record ID for that Account will be displayed for easy access to view the Account record. When a new Contact record is generated, it will be placed under the corresponding Account that was identified.

Import contacts only:

This option appears if ‘Contact’ or ‘Contact then Lead’ is chosen as the Salesforce object.

It is assumed that the Salesforce Account ID is already present in the file for lookup, or that Contacts will not be associated with an Account if there is no Account data tracked on Contacts within Salesforce (which is uncommon).

Actions to Take:

Scan for duplicates and insert or merge records:

Scans the file for matched Contact records in Salesforce. Duplicates can be merged, and new records pushed in new.

Update existing Salesforce records only (requires record IDs):

The file data should include the record IDs and any additional columns with field values needed to update the records. This option updates Salesforce records directly with the values in the file, without performing a search for matches.

Import Data Source:

Choose the plus sign to browse for the upload file.

Or drag and drop the upload file to the area.

The file must be in CSV Format and cannot be larger than 10MB.

File Options:

Has Column Headers: Leave selected if the file contains a header row.

Use European date format (dd/mm/yyyy): Default is US date format (mm/dd/yyyy).

Decimal separator for numeric values: Enable this option to use a non-US format for numeric values (ex: 1.000,00 for currency vs 1,000.00).

Step 2: Add Tracking (optional)

1. Assign Campaign:

To assign a campaign in Salesforce, choose ‘Lead’, ‘Contact’, ‘Contact then Lead’, or ‘Person Account then Lead’ as the Salesforce Object. Then, select ‘Assign Campaign’ and search for the desired campaign using the search icon. Choose the campaign status for the members in the upload. To create new members, select ‘Create new campaign members’, or choose ‘Update existing campaign member statuses’ to update the status for existing members. Both options can be applied simultaneously. Note that campaign assignment applies to all merged or pushed records.

2. Assign Rule:

This option is exclusive to Salesforce Objects like ‘Lead’, ‘Contact then Lead’, or ‘Person Account then Lead’. It only appears when using Lead Assignment Rules in Salesforce. The active lead assignment rule is set by default if multiple rules are configured. Newly created leads are subject to assignment rules. For applying rules to merged records, kindly contact the Cloudingo Support Team.

3. Select Default Status:

This option is only available when selecting ‘Lead’, ‘Contact then Lead’, or ‘Person Account then Lead’ as the Salesforce Object. Cloudingo will use the Salesforce default lead status automatically if no option is chosen. To choose a default lead status, select the ‘Select Default Lead Status’ option and choose the desired status to apply to all new records pushed.

4. Create Note:

To create a note, select the ‘Create Note’ option. Type in your message. Notes will appear in the ‘Notes’ or ‘Notes & Attachments’ section for all merged or pushed records in Salesforce. However, notes do take up space, use additional API calls, and are not searchable within Salesforce.

5. Owner Assignment:

If ‘Contact’ or ‘Contact then Lead’ is chosen as the Salesforce object, an option will appear. Select ‘Set the Contact owner to be the same as Account owner when an existing Account is found’ to set ownership for new Contacts automatically.

This option does not apply to merged records. To override existing records with import records, create a field rule in the Import rule. Set the rule to ‘Incoming record (import or API value)’ and ‘Always override the master with a value’.

Step 3: Map Columns

Map column headers to the corresponding Salesforce fields.

When selecting ‘Contact’ as the Salesforce Object, data can be mapped to Contact and/or Account fields. Map all Contact fields for record creation and any Account fields for override or lookup. If ‘Contact then Lead’ or ‘Person Account then Lead’ is chosen, map fields for both Contact/Person Account and Lead. Map Contact/Person fields first and then Cloudingo will prompt for mapping Lead fields. Toggle between mappings using the options at the top of the page.

  1. After mappings are set, save field mappings for re-use in future uploads by choosing the Save New button at the top of Step 3.
  2. Saved mappings will be available in the drop box at the top of Step 3 with the next import performed.
  3. Cloudingo will attempt to automatically map columns where the column header name is the same as the Salesforce field name. Verify accuracy on auto-mapped fields.
  4. To un-map a field, choose the Salesforce field drop box and choose the Choose a Salesforce field option.
  5. Use the Refresh Fields button at the top of step 3 if a field is not showing in the target field box.
    • Fields that are not editable or hidden in Salesforce cannot be mapped.
    1. The menu option at the far right of any field mapping is used to configure Transforms. Transform options include:
    • Text formatting: upper, lower, or title case.
    • Phone formatting: area code in parentheses, dashes only, spaced, or compacted.
      • Extension: X Prefix, Ext Prefix, and Allow Extension.
    • Lookup: Performs an ID value lookup if the file contains a text value for a corresponding object field when Salesforce expects an ID value. Specify the Object & Field that the ID will be pulling in from.
    • If no match is detected, choose to either clear the field value or allow null or empty.
    • Address: Standardizes states and/or countries from the spelled-out version to the code (or vice versa).
      • State Name to State Code.
      • State Code to State Name.
      • Country Name to Country Code.
      • Country Code to Country Name.

Step 4: Preview and Edit

Cloudingo performs pre-validation checks on the field values. Any potential errors that come up will be reported.

To edit a field value, simply use in-line editing and hit enter to save. You can also use the ‘Copy to All Rows’, ‘Copy to Selected Rows’, ‘Clear for All Values’, and ‘Clear for Selected Rows’ options. To copy values, enter the desired value in the first record, right-click in the cell, and select the preferred copy option. Be sure only to select the records that should receive the copied value in the checkbox column.

To delete records from the import, select the checkbox for each record or choose the select all button. Then, click the Delete option at the top right.

Step 5: Scan for Duplicates

Scan For Duplicates:

To select a filter, choose one from the pre-built options in the drop-down list. For more guidance, refer to the Creating Filters & Rules for more information.

Create New one-time Filter:

Build filter criteria on the fly instead of using a pre-built filter. If building a filter using fields that have not yet been indexed, Cloudingo may force a re-index on the object before the import can be started.

To build a filter, start by selecting the Match Criteria. Add matching criteria by selecting the ‘Add Match Condition’ option and choosing the Field, Matching Condition, and Options settings. Use ‘Add Match Condition’ to add more criteria. To set filter limits, toggle to the ‘Limit Results’ option and choose the ‘Add Condition’ option. Add additional limits by continuing to use ‘Add Condition’. To use pre-built filter data, select ‘Use existing filter data’ and adjust criteria as necessary. Check for pre-populated limits and adjust as needed. For more information on limits and imports, refer to the Creating Filters & Rules for Imports help article.

Rule to merge records:

Choose a rule to apply to the import records for merging data. The rule determines which master record is chosen and which field values get overwritten with the import merge. See the Creating Filters & Rules for Import article for more guidance.

Automatically merge duplicates:

For new users of the Import tool or those working with a new file format, it’s recommended to deselect the preview results option to ensure accuracy in Step 6. To start the automation process immediately after scanning for matches, select this option and the merging process will begin. After previewing results for accuracy in Step 6, automation can still be started.

Automatically create new unique records:

This option only appears if Lead, Contact, Account, Person Account, or a custom object enabled for merge is selected as the object. To ensure accuracy, it is recommended to deselect this option and preview results in Step 6.

This is especially useful for users new to the Import tool or starting with a new file format. Choose to push new records without a match automatically after scanning completes. Pushing new records can be done from Step 6 after previewing results for accuracy.

If ‘Contact’ or ‘Contact then Lead’ is chosen as the Salesforce Object, the Contact will be created under the matched Account. An option to ‘Push Contact instead of Lead’ will appear if ‘Contact then Lead’ is selected and a matched Account is identified.

Automatically create a contact (instead of a lead) when the account is found:

This option is available only if ‘Contact then Lead’ is selected as the object. To ensure accuracy in Step 6, it’s advisable to leave this option unchecked. It’s recommended to disable this option until all scans against Leads & Contacts are completed. If you want to automatically push new records as Contacts during the Contact scan, select this option. It’s advisable to enable this option only on the final scan after completing all Contact & Lead scans first.

Alternatively, push records in as Leads and run the dedupe convert filters afterward.

Skip merging groups with import records only:

The default option is recommended. If Cloudingo finds duplicate matches in file uploads with no Salesforce match, the file duplicates will be left unmanaged. This allows the user to address file duplicates manually before pushing records in new.

If deselected, duplicate import records will be merged and pushed in as new records to Salesforce.

If ‘Contact’ is chosen as the Salesforce Object, the Contact will be created under the matched Account if identified.

If ‘Contact then Lead’ is chosen as the Salesforce Object, the import file duplicates will be merged/pushed as a Contact or Lead depending on the object being scanned at the time of merge.

If merged/pushed during a Contact scan, the Contact will be created under the matched Account.

Scan ONLY import records from this import file (ignore other files):

Enable this option to only include duplicates detected in Salesforce or within the file being worked on. This option is recommended. Disable this option to include duplicates detected in Salesforce or with other incomplete files left in the Cloudingo import wizard.

Do nothing and let me decide what to push to Salesforce:

The scanning process is not performed. Step 6 will appear where the user can choose to rescan the records, push selected records to Salesforce, or export the file.

Do not scan for duplicates; just push all the records automatically:

Quickly push all records in the file to Salesforce as new records. The scanning process is not performed.

Step 6: Review Data

  • Choosing the ‘Back’ option will allow users to preview prior steps, but changes cannot be made. Use the ‘Rescan’ option to get back to Step 5 where the file can be rescanned.


Filter By: Filter records displayed for viewing and managing results.

  1. All: Displays all unique and duplicates.
  2. Unique: displays non-duplicates that do not exist in Salesforce.
  3. Total Duplicates: displays all records that have a duplicate detected in either Salesforce or within an import file.
  4. Salesforce Duplicates: displays all records that have a Salesforce match detected without an import record match.
  5. File Duplicates: displays all records that do not have a Salesforce match detected but are duplicated within an import file.
  6. Duplicates found in Salesforce and Import File Duplicates: displays all records that have a Salesforce match but also identified a duplicate within an import file.
  7. Errors: displays all records that contain an error alert.

Import Status


The record is loaded but not analyzed for deduplication. If the file does not move past this status, delete the file from the import wizard and try uploading the file again. If the file still does not move past this status, contact Cloudingo Support.


The record is analyzed and ready to be managed. Records have not been merged or pushed.

  • Red icon means Salesforce match detected.
  • Blue icon means import file match detected (no Salesforce match).
  • No icon means unique records (no match detected).
  • Alert icon means an error was detected.


Status will display Merged when the import record has been merged with the corresponding matched record(s) detected.


Status will display Pushed when the import record has been pushed into Salesforce as a new record.


Removes the selected record(s) from the import file.


Exports the filtered selection to a new CSV file. See details in the Import Basics help article regarding exporting completed files.

In-Line Editing

Step 6 allows for inline editing. Edit file data before pushing records into Salesforce. Use checkboxes and the ‘Delete’ option to select records for deletion during the upload process.

Merge Preview

Check import results for accuracy. Verify good matches pulled in by the filter. Confirm correct assignment of master record and field values by the rule prior to merging.

Start Automation

Before merging, review the results for accuracy. Start automation from Step 6 by selecting ‘Start Automation’ to merge all detected duplicates.


To identify all potential matches, rescan the file with multiple filters. Merge duplicates detected from the first scan and choose the ‘Rescan’ option to select a different filter. Merge duplicates found in the second scan. Keep rescanning until all filters have been processed and duplicates are merged. When Salesforce Object is ‘Contact then Lead’ or ‘Person Account then Lead’, scan the Contact/Person Account filter(s) first. Choose to rescan against additional ‘Contact’/’Person Account’ filters or opt for ‘Lead’ to scan against Lead filters.

Push in New Records

Perform duplicate scans, merge duplicate records, and push new unique records into Salesforce using the ‘Unique’ filter option. Choose to push records as ‘Contacts/Person Accounts’ or ‘Leads’ if ‘Contact then Lead’ or ‘Person Account then Lead’ is selected as the Salesforce Object. If pushing as Contacts, a new Account will be created if there is no match. Use the ‘Rescan’ option to scan for matching Accounts and automatically create a new Contact instead of a Lead if a match is found. All remaining records can be manually pushed in as Leads. The file will move to ‘complete’ status once all records have been managed.


Be sure to use the ‘Export’ option to save a local copy of the results and how records were managed. Files will be deleted from Cloudingo after 30 days.

What’s to gain with high quality data?

Learn more about how your team can become a bigger player with clean, high quality data.

Meet the Author: Olivia Yarrow

Hi all! I’m the director of Marketing at Cloudingo. I have 9 years of experience in Sales and Marketing with a passion for B2B software. I’ve gone from being a Salesforce Admin’s worst nightmare to a knight in shining armor with Cloudingo. Data quality has never been more important, and we’re here to help.

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