Importing your data using smart columns

Updated a month ago

Sometimes you need to import data into Beacon, but the data in your spreadsheet isn't quite in the format that's right for you. When this happens, you can choose between two options:

  1. Modify the spreadsheet before you upload it
  2. Add a "smart column" in Beacon, translating data into the correct format for Beacon

If you only have to import your data once (like you would doing a data migration), we recommend going for option 1. However, if you're importing data regularly into Beacon, you don't want to have to edit your spreadsheet every time before upload! For this situation, you should go for option 2 - smart columns.

check_circle_outline We've prepared some examples of smart columns to help you get the most out of them once you've read through this guide!

link Using smart columns

Smart columns are just like columns in Excel. Add them in Beacon by clicking the '+' in the extra column at the end of the sample data from your import template:

Add smart column

You can specify any Excel-valid formula:

Screenshot 2019-05-29 at 17.48.29

You'll see the calculated values in a special orange column in Beacon when previewing your import template:

Screenshot 2019-05-29 at 17.49.59

help_outline Just like normal columns, remember to map your smart column to a field in Beacon. The header will turn blue once it's been mapped.Smart column mapped

More usefully, you can pass the values of other columns into your smart columns, for example:

Screenshot 2019-05-29 at 17.52.40

To insert other columns into your smart column formula, click the icon on the right of the field, and choose the column that you'd like to use:

Screenshot 2019-05-29 at 17.53.55

Screenshot 2019-05-29 at 17.54.01

Just like other columns, it's possible to map the values of smart columns to fields in Beacon, and de-duplicate based on them.

help_outline Most references to columns in a formula will need to have double quotation marks around it - only pure number fields won't need this. Smart columns quotation marks

help_outline Column references are case-sensitive; so {{{First Name}}} is different from {{{first name}}}.

link Frequently asked questions

link My formula isn't working!

First things first, double check your formula in Excel / Google Sheets. If it works there but not in Beacon, please get in touch with Beacon support and we'll take a look in more detail. (We support most Excel functions, but not every function)


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