Using the scheduled contact importer

Learn to use our scheduled contact importer to import and keep a large number of contacts up-to-date.


Whereas you can upload contacts using our manual import process, it has its limitations - for example, a maximum file size of 50MB. For larger imports, you can use the contact importer to upload your contacts. 


It allows you to make use of our hosted and secure SFTP server to upload your data to, automate file importing via a set schedule of your choice, and in turn allows for larger file sizes to be uploaded. It's the tool to use if you're looking to upload large amounts of data. 

SFTP (SSH File Transfer Protocol, also know as Secure File Transfer Protocol) is an established network protocol that enables secure file transfer capabilities across a data stream, using secure shell.

Download an SFTP client

To use the scheduled contact importer, you'll need to download an SFTP client in order to connect to our SFTP server.

There are a few options we can suggest, but there are more should you wish to explore other options:

Create an SFTP user

You'll next need to create an SFTP user with which to authenticate your connection to our SFTP server.

  1. Go to Settings > Access > SFTP users and select New user.
  2. For Email address, the email address is generated for you as it must be unique to ensure the results generated are correct.
  3. If you want, for Description, enter a description. This helps to see who is who when you have multiple users.
  4. For Password, enter a password and confirm it.
  5. For Status, select Enabled to enables the user.
  6. Select Save.


Your SFTP users are listed under 'SFTP users', where they can be edited and deleted. Above your SFTP endpoint is confirmed, which is region-specific.


Schedule an import task

  1. Go to Contacts > Import data.
  2. Select + Add new data import to add a scheduled task. 
  3. Select an address book to import your contacts into and then select Next
  4. The next screen prompts you to upload a file to our SFTP server via your SFTP client. You'll note that a folder path will have been created on the server for you. 


    Connect to your chosen SFTP client using the SFTP user credentials that you created.
  5. In making a connection, you'll be asked for our SFTP server name and the port, which is 22.
  6. Once connected, upload a file into the folder that's been created for you.
  7. Once your SFTP client confirms the successful upload of the file, return to the 'File' screen again in the app. Accepted file formats are Excel, CSV, TXT and ZIP.4.
  8. On the 'File' screen, open the 'SFTP file' drop-down menu and select the uploaded file on the SFTP server. If it's not showing yet, try selecting the Refresh icon. 


    Select the appropriate encoding type depending upon which foreign language character sets you're looking to support. Unicode (UTF-8) will support most languages. 

    You have the option to add an email address to notify when your import is finished.

    You'll need to enter a name to associate with the scheduled task.
  9. Once happy, select Next.
  10. Next, you'll need to map the file columns to the appropriate contact data fields. This is the same mapping process as when manually importing a file. If you make a change to your file, you must remap your schedule task.

    For more on mapping file columns to contact data fields, read Importing contacts into an address book.

    Once happy with the mapping, select Next.
  11. Finally, choose the frequency with which you'd like to schedule the importing of your contact files. Any files that are present in the SFTP folder path will be included each time the import runs.
    You can choose:
    • Hourly - and set the minutes past the hour that the import runs
    • Daily - and set the time of day the import runs
    • Weekly - and select a day or number of days of the week, along with setting the time of day, the import runs

Once happy, select Save schedule.

You'll be taken back to the 'Scheduled tasks' page where confirmation is given that your schedule has been saved, along with when it will run. 

All scheduled tasks are listed on this page.


After contacts have been imported, files are deleted from our SFTP server.

Managing scheduled tasks

You can manage your scheduled tasks on the 'Scheduled tasks' page.

It provides the following details on any scheduled task that has been set up:

  • The name of the scheduler
  • The folder path of the scheduled task (the source)
  • The source type 
  • The destination type
  • The scheduled task's status, which can be 'Active', 'Draft' or 'Running'
  • The date the scheduled task was last modified
  • The date the scheduled task was created

You can delete scheduled tasks by ticking them and selecting Delete.

You can edit a scheduled task by selecting on the Edit icon next to it. This enables you to change elements such as the address book to upload to, the encoding type, the email address to notify, the scheduler's name, the mappings and the schedule settings.


To view reporting on your scheduled task, select on the Reporting icon. 

Reporting provides details on the number of contacts imported and the status of the import (e.g. whether it's failed, pending or running).


Your completed scheduled imports are stored in Contacts > Advanced featuresImport history for 30 days, just as manual imports are.
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