Last Updated on February 25, 2020

Introduction

Data Exchange channels are used to import inventory information to StoreAutomator. This is useful if you have an internal inventory controlling program already set up, up & running and you would like to use StoreAutomator to communicate with sales channels like Amazon, or eBay.

You can reach DX channel and their settings through:

Menu > Tools > DX Channels

The upcoming screen is a list of data channels created in the system.

Adding an Import Channel

This is the place we provide information to download the information from. Click on the “Add Import Channel” button towards the upper right-hand side.

There are five methods of downloading inventory listings.

        >> Channel Input imports the information into one of your selected channels as overrides, on a daily basis, through API connection protocol or a file,

        >> FTP Channel obtains information through File Transfer Protocol or FTP connection from a remote computer and imports to your inventory,

        >> Import Channel imports information from one of your pre-selected StroeAutomator channels; e.g.: Amazon, Shopify, BigCommerce, WooCommerce, etc. to your inventory,

        >> Inventory Input, imports information from a data source into your inventory under a selected supplier’s inventory,

        >> Warehouse Input obtains information from any channel or data source into your inventory under a selected warehouse’s inventory,

Below table compares Data Source, Target, and purposes of methods:

Import TypeData SourceTargetTemplate
Channel InputAPI connection, Excel, CSV fileOne of StoreAutomator ChannelsNeeded
FTP ChannelFTP connectionInventoryNO
Import ChannelSelected SA ChannelInventoryNO
Inventory InputAPI connection, Excel, CSV fileInventory of a supplierNeeded
Warehouse InputAPI connection, Excel, CSV fileInventory of a warehouseNeeded

Channel Input 

Channel Input, imports information into one of your selected Channels as overrides. It can either directly import from a remote connection through an API protocol, or you can upload a .cvs, text, or excel file, manually. First, the channel needs to be correctly set up through the Settings button.

Click on, API Connection to enter the server address, authentication type, username, and password, before enabling the connection, API connection settings must be completed,

Click on, Template to assign a template for the channel, which defines the incoming file format and assigns fields to StoreAutomator native fields, before enabling the connection, a template must be assigned, Click on “Add” to create one

Click on Upload File to drag and drop a file for processing,

Click on Data Exchange to change settings pertaining to this operation:

>> Channel name is the Channel’s display name,

>> Enable or Disable Channel, Enabling will execute the job within the set parameters, 

>> Enable Daily schedule, will set up a time, which StoreAutomator will connect to the import channel and download data, on a daily basis. 

>> Action for Missing Items, tells StoreAutomator what to do in case there are missing items in the incoming feed (in comparison to the SA inventory); it is either do nothing or Assign a zero quantity to those items in SA inventory,

>> Target Channel sets up the Target channel you would like to download the information to if you don’t select a channel operation will not execute,

>> Make sure to click on the Save button to save your work and the system takes you back to the list of DX Channels.

FTP Channel

FTP Channel imports information through File Transfer Protocol or FTP connection from a remote computer, to your SA inventory; and returns the job result back to the remote folder. The first channel needs to be correctly set up through the FTP Connection Settings button:

Fill in the FTP information correctly:

             >> Server URL is the FTP server address,

             >> Import Directory is the place that the file to be processed is in,

             >> Directory for Processed Files, this is the place the output file to be put in,

             >> User Name is the FTP username,

             >> Password  is the FTP password,

Click on Data Exchange to change settings pertaining to this operation:

            >> Channel name is the channel’s display name,

           >> Enable or Disable Channel Enabling will execute the job within the set parameters, 

           >> Enable Daily schedule, will set up a time, which StoreAutomator will connect to the import channel and download data, on a daily basis. 

Make sure to click on the Save button to save your work and the system takes you back to the list of DX Channels.

Import Channel

Import Channel imports information from one of your pre-selected SA channels; e.g.: Amazon, Shopify, Big Commerce, Woo Commerce, etc.. to your inventory. 

First, choose a channel to import, from the drop-down list, and choose your importing mode. Below are your options:

          >>Create Only:  This option gets information for nonexistent items and creates them if it doesn’t exist in your inventory products list.

          >> Create Update: This option gets information for nonexistent items and updates existing items in your inventory

         >> Quantity Only: This option gets the quantity information and updates quantities for existing items in your inventory.

         >> Update Only: This option updates all information (Product Data, Inventory, Quantity) for existing items in your inventory.

         >> Price Only: This option updates only Prices for existing items in your inventory

        >> Price and Quantity Only: This option updates Prices and Quantities for existing items in your inventory.

        >> Update Shipping Template Only: This option obtains the target channel’s shipping template and imports to the target channel without importing any other information.

 

Let’s give an example to explain these modes, in your channel and inventory you have the following items:

Remote Channel: 1, 2, 3, x, y

Inventory: 4, x, y, z

Create Only, creates items 1, 2, 3 in your inventory and don’t do anything with x, y

Create Update, creates items 1, 2, 3 in your inventory and updates x, y information

Quantity Only, Updates the quantity information for x, y and does not add 1, 2, 3 to inventory

Update Only, Updates all information for x, y and does not add 1, 2, 3 to inventory

Price Only: Updates only Prices of x, y

Price and Quantity Only: Updates Price and Quantity of x, y.

Click on Data Exchange to change settings pertaining to this operation:

Click on Data Exchange to change settings pertaining to this operation:

       >> Channel name, is the Channel’s display name,

      >> Enable or Disable Channel, Enabling will execute the job within the set parameters, 

      >> Enable Daily schedule, will set up a time, which StoreAutomator will connect to the import channel and download data, on a daily basis. 

Make sure to click on the Save button to save your work and the system takes you back to the list of DX Channels.

Inventory Input

Inventory Input imports information from a data source and imports into your inventory under a selected supplier inventory, It can either directly import from a remote connection through an API connection protocol, or you can upload a .cvs, text, or excel file, manually. First, the channel needs to be correctly set up through the Settings button.

Click on, API Connection to enter the server address, authentication type, username, and password, before enabling the connection, API connection settings must be completed,

Click on, Template to assign a template for the channel, which defines the incoming file format and assigns fields to StoreAutomator native fields, before enabling the connection, a template must be assigned, Click on “Add” to create one

Click on Upload File to drag and drop a file for processing,

Click on Data Exchange to change settings pertaining to this operation:

                   >> Channel name is the Channel’s display name,

                  >> Enable or Disable Channel, Enabling will execute the job within the set parameters, 

                  >> Enable Daily schedule, will set up a time, which StoreAutomator will connect to the import channel and download data, on a daily basis. 

                  >> Action for Missing Items, tells StoreAutomator what to do in case there are missing items in the incoming feed (in comparison to the SA inventory); it is either do nothing or Assign a zero quantity to those items in SA inventory,

                  >> Target Supplier sets up the Target supplier you would like to download the information to if you don’t select a supplier operation will not execute,

Make sure to click on the Save button to save your work and the system takes you back to the list of DX Channels. 

Warehouse Input

Warehouse Input, obtains information from any channel or data source and imports into your inventory, under a selected warehouse’s inventory. It can either directly import from a remote connection through an API connection protocol, or you can upload a .cvs, text, or excel file, manually. First, the channel needs to be correctly set up through the Settings button.

Click on, API Connection to enter the server address, authentication type, username, and password, before enabling the connection, API connection settings must be completed,

Click on, Template to assign a template for the channel, which defines the incoming file format and assigns fields to StoreAutomator native fields, before enabling the connection, a template must be assigned, Click on “Add” to create one

Click on Upload File to drag and drop a file for processing,

Click on Data Exchange to change settings pertaining to this operation:

                   >> Channel name is the Channel’s display name,

                   >> Enable or Disable Channel Enabling will execute the job within the set parameters, 

                  >> Enable Daily schedule will set up a time, which StoreAutomator will connect to the import channel and download data, on a daily basis. 

                  >> Action for Missing Items tells StoreAutomator what to do in case there are missing items in the incoming feed (in comparison to the SA inventory); it is either do nothing or Assign a zero quantity to those items in SA inventory,

                  >> Target Inventory sets up the Target inventory you would like to download the information to, if you don’t select an inventory, the operation will not execute,

Make sure to click on the Save button to save your work and the system takes you back to the list of DX Channels. 

If StoreAutomator can establish a connection link with the remote channel, a Green square can be seen next to the channel name. If there are missing information and a connection cannot be established a red square is visible; at this point, you must go back and correct connection information.

StoreAutomator performs jobs on the designated times. Source file will be sought and if found, the job will be performed. SA will create a job report after processing the feed, which can be found in, Tools> Import> Import History.

Template Preparation

Templates are basically a guide for the StoreAutomator system to figure which field in the incoming file needs to be written to which field in the StoreAutomator inventory or in Channels. Templates are required for the said methods to perform, failing to define a template will prematurely terminate the process. 

                  >> To create Templates you can either click on the “Add” text in the Template section or go to Settings> Templates and “Add Template” button. 

                 >> Select Template type, as “Generic Import”

                 >> Choose your template type, chosen template types provides StoreAutomator system with the available fields for this type of upload. Once a template is selected, while you are adding fields, the fields defined are available for selection. You can choose these fields and match with your own file’s fields; which will tell the StoreAutomator system to look into your file, look for a certain field name and send the data in that field to the corresponding StoreAutomator field. Templates are purpose-based which means they will provide different fields for your usage; need to be chosen correctly for your purposes. Here is a list of the templates and their purposes for your information:

                 >> Channel: Channel Descriptions: For importing description related fields,

                 >> Channel: Channel Inclusions: For importing channel related fields,

                >>Channel: Channel Products: For importing all fields of products, use this one,

                >> Channel: Repricer Settings: For importing Price related fields,

                >> Inventory: Alias Conversion: For importing alias, AltSKU related fields,

                >> Inventory: Bundle Conversion: For importing bundle related fields,

                >> Inventory: Liquidation Settings: For importing Liquidation related fields,

                >> Inventory: Multi Channel Sync: For importing sync related fields,

                >> Inventory: Multi Channel Alias: For importing alias, AltSKU related fields,

                >> Inventory: Product Data: For importing alias, AltSKU related fields,

               >> Inventory: Publish State: For importing publish state related fields,

               >> Order: Import Tracking: For importing Tracking related fields,

               >> Warehouse: Warehouse Product: For importing warehouse related fields.

It is better to use “Channel Products” and “Product Data” type templates as they provide plenty of fields for importing purposes.

Once the correct template is selected, the next step is to match and assign your fields to StoreAutomator fields. Make sure to save your work occasionally in order to not to lose work. Prepared templates must be tested to see if they work properly and as expected.

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