Flex Importer FAQs

What kind of information can I import into LGL?

The Flex Importer allows you to import all types of records into your Little Green Light account; you can import data into nearly all fields.

For a complete list of available fields, see the LGL Data Dictionary.

What file formats can I use to import my data?

Files can be imported in multiple formats:
  • CSV: Comma separated values. This is the recommended file format.
  • Excel: Either .xls or .xlsx files can be imported if they are under 1MB in size. Note: With Excel files, only the first worksheet will be imported; also, ensure that your date fields are formatted as Date values.

What kinds of files can I import?

Here are some common kinds of files you can import using the Flex Importer:
  • Constituent contact information from an existing donor database or other data source
  • Constituent and gift information from your online payment processor (for example, Stripe, PayPal, Google Checkout, or some other online donation provider)
  • Constituent and gift information from QuickBooks (transaction, client, and account information)
  • Event participation and giving information from an event management product such as EventBrite
  • Volunteering information from any source

What happens if my import has people/organizations who are already in my LGL account?

You can set preferences during your import to help reduce the creation of duplicates. Please see Control duplicates on import.

My column has multiple values in it that are separated by commas. Will the LGL Flex Importer automatically read each value separately when loading into a category like Groups?

The Flex Importer will not automatically figure this out for you. However, if you tell it that there are a) multiple values and b) what is used to separate the values (a semicolon works well), then it will follow your instructions. See Mapping constituent category fields for more information.

Will my import overwrite or remove field values?

In terms of how the Flex Importer works and what it does, here are a few helpful things to keep in mind:
  • The Importer never deletes anything—it will only ever add or update
  • Single value fields like background information, first name, or contact type will be updated by the Importer (provided you give it enough information to match an existing constituent)
  • Multi-value fields like groups, tags, etc., will check for duplicate values but will always append new values
  • Blank or null values will be ignored entirely
  • To be able to update a record, you need to provide the Importer with enough information to find the record that exists already
  • For constituents, the LGL Constituent ID or External ID are the best bets, but email matching and a few other options are available
  • For gifts, you can use the External Gift ID or LGL Gift ID to update a gift record. Since all gift fields are single value, any information you provide will replace what's there in the case of an update. If a match is not found, a new record will be created
  • For phones, emails, addresses, and other sub records, the only way to make an update is to provide the LGL ID for that record (the Email ID, Phone ID, etc.). If a match on ID is not found, a new record is created (though the Importer also checks for duplicates where possible, so you won't have the same exact email added twice to one record, for example).