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Import field guide

You can import data from spreadsheets into your Wild Apricot contact database. You can use importing to add new contact records or update existing ones. As part of the import, you can create new database fields and new membership levels.


You can update only common and membership fields through importing.

For instructions on uploading the import file, see Importing members and other contacts.

Spreadsheet file format

The spreadsheet containing the data you want to import must be in either .xls, .xlsx, .csv, or .xml format, and up to 50 megabytes in size.


If the file consists of multiple sheets, the import process may hang. If successful, only the last sheet in the file will be imported.

Required columns

There are no required columns when adding new contact records through import, though it is a good idea to include one for the email address, since email address is the primary identifier for contacts in Wild Apricot, and is required for contacts to sign in and perform self-service functions. The only required column when updating existing contact records is email address. You can include additional columns for each field you want to update in your contact database. The names of the columns – the column headings – are not important since you can map each column in the spreadsheet to fields in your contact database as part of the import process.

Updating existing contacts

To update existing contact records, make sure the columns that map to the User ID or Email fields in your Wild Apricot contact database contains existing values. Then, enter values in the columns that correspond to the fields you want to update. Blank cell values will be ignored.

If you want to remove a value – leaving it blank rather than replacing it with another value – enter NEVER for system date fields, and CLEAR for custom fields, and for Group participation, Organization, and Notes system fields (basically, any non-date field).

Adding new contacts

To create new contact records, the  Email  column should contain email addresses that are not currently in your contact database. For new records, any value entered in the User ID column will be ignored since user IDs are automatically generated by the system.

Importing members

If you are importing members, include a Membership level column and enter the appropriate level for each member. You can assign contacts to existing membership levels, or enter a new level name to create a level for them. 

Optionally, you can also set values for the Member since and Renewal due columns. If you don't include columns for these fields, the Member since value will be set to the import date, and the Renewal due value will be set according to the renewal settings for the membership level.  

The Membership enabled column will be automatically set to Yes , and the  Membership status  will be automatically set to Active when you specify a membership level value. However, for best results when importing members, you should include a Membership enabled column and set the values for all members to Yes. If you are importing lapsed members, be sure to set the  Membership status  column to Lapsed .

System fields that cannot be updated

The following system fields cannot be updated through importing, for security reasons.

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  • Administration access
  • Renewal date last changed
  • Level last changed
  • Member role
  • Balance
  • Total donated
  • Created on
  • Updated by
  • Profile last updated

System fields that can be updated


System fields already exist within your Wild Apricot database and do not need to be created in your common or membership fields.

The following system fields can be updated through importing.

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For many system fields, you are restricted to entering certain values, or to enter values using a certain format. The valid values and formats for system fields are listed below.

System field

Valid values


User ID

Usually a 5, 6 or 7 digit number

This is a unique ID automatically generated by the system. You can enter an existing user ID to identity an existing contact in your database. 
You cannot create your own user ID; any values not found in your Wild Apricot database are ignored and replaced with a system generated ID. 


Any valid email format (i.e. randymarsh@naccp.com)

If the email address entered already exists in the database, then the existing record will be updated. Otherwise, a new record will be created.
If multiple records within the import file use the same email address, only the first record will be imported and the other records using that address will be ignored.

Group participation

Name of the member group 
Any combination of letters, numbers, characters, and spaces

If you specify a member group that does not already exist in your Wild Apricot account, you will have the option to create it during the mapping stage of the import process.
To assign a member to more than one group, enter the group names on separate lines.

Opt inYes, No, blank (Undefined) 


Any combination of letters, numbers, and characters; no spaces
Minimum number of characters: 7
Maximum number of characters: 50

Leave empty if you do not want to update the current user passwords.
Passwords can only be imported, not exported. 

Membership enabled

Yes - contact is a member
No - membership is suspended; contact no longer treated as a member

If set to No, all membership fields are ignored during import.

Membership level

Name of your membership level
Any combination of letters, numbers, characters, and spaces

If you specify a membership level that does not already exist in your Wild Apricot account, you will have the option to create it during the mapping stage of the import process.

Member bundle ID or email

The user ID or the email address of a bundle administrator.

Use this field to bind members to the same bundle (see Importing bundles).

Member since

Use supported date format (see below)


Renewal due

Use supported date format (see below)
Or set to Never - if member is not required to renew.



Active -  Member enjoys all member benefits
Lapsed - Member has not paid his/her dues in time
Pending - Renewal - Member initiated the renewal process, but payment has not been confirmed yet
Pending - Level Change - Membership level change was initiated, now waiting for payment confirmation or approval.
Pending - New - New application is awaiting approval or payment confirmation.

See How membership status affects available functionality.

Subscribed to emails


If Yes, contacts will be able to receive automatic email notices.
Setting to  No  disables emails being sent to this contact (regardless of the Event announcements and Member emails and newsletters settings).

Event announcements


This controls whether automatic event notices and reminders are sent to the contact.
This setting is ignored if Subscribed to emails is set to No .

Member emails and newsletters


This controls whether the user receives email blasts sent by Wild Apricot. 
This setting is ignored if  Subscribed to emails  is set to  No .



Set to Yes if you want the contact archived.

Access to profile by others


Set to Yes if you want this contact's profile to be seen by others.

Details to show

Member ID&&Nobody
First Name&&Anybody
Last Name&&Members

You can control which kind of visitors can view individual profile fields using the following format: fieldname&&permission where fieldname is the name of the field, and permission is Nobody, Anybody, or Member.

Photo albums enabled


Set to Yes if you want to enable photo albums for this member.


Any characters

Admin-only field, typically used by the system to record information not captured by other fields (i.e. automatic membership emails sent, when member was renewed, etc.)


Any other system fields included in the import file will be ignored.

Values vs. calculated values

You cannot import calculated values – cells that uses formulas rather than actual values. Only actual values can be imported.

Supported date formats

Date fields – membership start date, for example – must be formatted using an Excel date format. 

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Otherwise, an error will occur when importing the file.

If you are importing using a CSV file, the date fields must use one of the following date formats:



dd mm yyyy

31 Dec 2014


















Do not include the time of day within a date field.

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