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Remove Products Through a CSV Import

There may come a time when you need to delete your products en masse. The most common method to do this is by selecting all of the products that you'd like to remove from your Online Store Manager's Products List page (Products > Product List) and selecting Delete from the Batch Action menu located at the bottom.

Another method is to remove the products via a CSV export. This second method can be useful if you have hundreds (if not thousands!) of products that need to be removed, and going through the Shift4Shop Online Store Manager is not a feasible method for your needs.

This guide will illustrate how to delete products via the CSV.

Exporting your Products

The first step is to export a CSV of your existing products from your store. The basic process of removing Products via CSV import involves adding a simple minus sign (-) to the catalogid of the products you'd like to remove. Normally, a product's catalogid will be listed as a whole number, such as 1234, but to remove the product from your store's database upon import, you will need to list the catalogid as -1234 for the import.

What we will be doing, in this case, is creating a custom export set that lists your product catalogid data with the hyphen already populated on it. After generating the CSV export, you will need to remove the products you'd like to keep from the CSV file (thereby only having the products set for removal in the CSV) and import the resultant file to your store.

Custom Export Set

Log into your Shift4Shop Online Store Manager and use the left navigation menu to:

  1. Go to Products > Product List.

  2. Look towards the top right of the page and click on the Export/Import button.

  3. Next, click on the + icon next to products on the "Export" side of the page. (The left side of the page)

You should see an area (under the Manufacturer and Distributor fields) called "Custom Export Sets." At the bottom of this area, you'll see a link marked "Manage."

4. Click on the Manage link.

5. Then, look to the top right of the next page and click on the +Add New button.

These next steps will allow you to create a customized export set containing only the columns we need for the product removal.

6. Specify a Name for your new Custom Export Set.

7. Click Save.

8. Click on the "Add New Field" section, and select "catalogid" from the drop-down.

9. Click Add New to insert it.

10. Repeat the above steps for "id" and "name" in the "Add New Field" drop-down menu.

11. Click Save.

The above steps will generate a CSV file with only three columns on it:

  • Catalog ID
    The store's database ID for the product.

  • ID
    The product SKU/ID information

  • Name
    The Product names so you can identify them more easily.

As mentioned before, to remove items from the store using CSV, the file needs to have the catalog ID listed with a minus (-) sign. So in the next step, we'll have the store generate the file with the minus sign already in place!

12. Look at the "Prefix" field for catalogid, and enter a minus sign in it.

13. Then, click Save at the top right.

14. Repeat steps 1 through 3 above to get back to your Export page.

This time, place a dit in the button to select the custom export you just created. Then click on "Export Data" to generate your CSV file.

You should now have a CSV export file containing your product data with three columns: catalogid, id, and name. Furthermore, the catalogid listing on the products will contain a minus sign on the front of them.

Editing your Exported CSV file

The next step will be to edit your CSV file so that it contains ONLY those products which you wish to remove from the store.

15. Open the CSV file in your favorite spreadsheet program

16. Using the Product ID and/or Name columns, select and delete the product rows for products that you intend to keep on your store.

After making your needed changes, you should now have a CSV list of products that you'll be removing from your store. Save this file after editing, and you're all set. You may now import this special CSV file to your store, and it will remove the listed products upon import. Just be sure that - when you import the file - it is imported as an Update (rather than an insert).