How do I import multiple value custom fields?
To import multiple value custom field values, you need to format the data in your file so the custom field values have a "double pipe" separator - || - between them.
Format a file for multiple value custom fields
Here's how data might look like when prepared for import in a comma separated values (.csv) file:
Name, Email, Interests, Country Simon Says, firstname.lastname@example.org, Surfing||Movies||Reading, Australia
The multiple value data in the example above is: Surfing||Movies||Reading. Everything else stays the same, separated by a comma.
Use the same formatting if your subscriber details are in a spread sheet program. File formats you can import include Excel documents (.xls and .xlsx ) so just format your multiple value data as shown below (in column C) and you're good to go.
Note: We use the same "double pipe" formatting for subscriber data you export as well, so it's easy to make any changes you want and re-import the file back into the same or other subscriber lists.
By default, importing a file to your subscriber list will overwrite the values assigned to an existing subscriber's custom fields. This is fine for many custom fields, as they only accept one value. However "multiple option (can select many)" fields can contain many values, potentially leading to a situation where multiple values are overwritten by a single, new value imported from your file.
To keep both your old and new data for these fields, you can use this workaround.