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Importing Data into a Multi Select field issues

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Hi There,

I’ve done an export from our website and want to import into Airtable. Most of the fields are fine but there is one field that I’d like to import as a Multi Select field but having issues.

A sample of the (anonymised) data looks like:

Apple~Chicken, Beef & Lamb~Rice~Pasta~Banana
Crisps, Chocolate and Sweets~Smoothie~Pineapple
Cheddar & Stilton~Pancakes
Crisps, Chocolate and Sweets~Pasta

For the above records I’d like them to appear as:

Screenshot 2021-11-04 at 16.43.06

There are around 50 variables for the multi select field and the data itself is around 10,000 records so want to get the import right! And whilst we are looking at the API for the future, in the short term we will have to do multiple imports to keep the data up to date.

Advice welcome!

Thank you.

1 Reply 1

Hi Toni,

I have imported that type of field directly from a CSV export coming from a database just by using the CSV import app available in Airtable.
If you want to use this method, you may pay attention to the following:

  • CSV are comma separated, so there is a chance that you may end up in an error when exporting because a confusion between fields
  • To avoid that situation, try a CSV formatted like this example:
  • Include the headers in the first row (just for troubleshooting) and fill the data as

type, color, item
these are red items, red, “apple, cherry”
these are orange items, orange, “orange, peach, salmon”
these are blue items, blue, “smurf”

the CSV app will pick up the item enclosed between double quotes and put it correctly into a multiselect field in Airtable.

I hope that this helps
Good luck