Contacts Import Spreadsheet Template - Frequently Asked Questions


Which fields are required to create a contact record in Redtail?

A Firstname & Lastname must be included on the spreadsheet in order for an individual contact to be created.  A Business Name needs to be included to create a Business, a Trust Name for a Trust, etc. 


What is the minimum number of contacts for an Excel import?

We can import as little as two contact lines using this method - however, this type of import is intended to be used to create contacts in bulk.  Smaller numbers of contacts should be entered into Redtail manually. Please check out this article for more information on using our Quick Add feature: Add Contact Records to your database


Can I change any of the column header titles on the template?

Please do not change any of the pre-titled column headers on the template as this could cause issues with the import. The only column header titles you are able to customize on the template are the UD1-UD20 columns.


What is the Companyname field for?

This field is used to create an Employer Record for the Primary Contact listed in columns C-F on the spreadsheet. This will automatically create a separate business record for any company names listed in this field, and be linked back to the Primary Contact as their Employer in Redtail.


You can also create a Business Record, and link multiple contacts/employees back to the Membership section.


If you need to import a Company without linking it to a contact, you can omit adding information to columns C-F, and add a “B” to the Type column. This will create a Business Record only, which can have its own contact information listed (phones, addresses, emails, etc.)


You can also use this field to add Trust Records to your database. Simply add the name of the Trust to the Companyname column and a “T” to the Type column, and we will create a Trust Record when we import this data.



How do I link spouses with the spreadsheet import?

We automatically create a separate record for the spouse if the spouse name is listed under the Spouse Name Columns (Column M1-P1). As long as the spouse is listed on the same row/line as the primary contact, we will automatically link the spouse to the primary contact when we run the import.



A common mistake that we see is listing the spouse name multiple times on the spreadsheet, which results in duplicate records. Please be sure to list the spouse name only once on the spreadsheet.




Can I link Family Members using the Familyname column?

The Familyname column does not link contacts in any way.  This column should only be used if a Spouse Name is also added to the Spouse Name Columns (M-P) on the Import Spreadsheet.  If data is added to the Familyname column, it will mark the Main Contact (listed in columns C-F) as the Head of Household with that Familyname listed in their record.  Other family members/dependants can be linked manually in redtail once the import is complete.






How do I import multiple Keywords or Tag Groups?

We can import multiple Keywords and/or Tag Groups with the spreadsheet import. You will need to use a semicolon to separate multiple Keywords or Tag Group names. Be sure you add your Keywords and Tag Group names exactly as you want them to appear in your database.  Below is an example of how to add the semicolon to separate these:




Can permissions be set when importing from Excel?

We are not able to set permissions for contacts with the import. Permissions would need to be set by the user manually after the import. All the contacts from each spreadsheet will automatically be tagged with an import keyword, so you will be able to set up permission easily with a bulk update.


Can I import partial Addresses?

You will need to enter a FULL address, starting with "line 1", to avoid any errors when importing.  For example:






How long does it take for my spreadsheet template to get imported once I send it in?

We can usually complete the spreadsheet import within 1 business day of receiving the file.


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    Michael Bowlen

    What Email address do we send the completed spreadsheet to?

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