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Contact List Not Uploading

Contact Lists Importing / Exporting Updated on July 23, 2019

If you are experiencing problems uploading your contact list to your Benchmark Email account, it could be due to several things. Using the wrong file type, invalid format, and even size can cause the list to fail to upload. Keep in mind, that if your list is not approved this too will prevent you from uploading your list.

Following are some of the most common problems associated with uploading lists:

List Contains Invalid Emails

All list uploaded go through a list sampling, where Benchmark can determine the percentage of deliverable and invalid emails. Having a high percentage of invalid emails can cause the list to be rejected and not uploaded. If your list is rejected due to invalid emails, we recommend using a list verification service to verify your list. Benchmark also, offers List Verification to help remove the emails from your contact list, please click here to learn more about list approval.

Role Based Emails

During the list upload process, role based email addresses are removed to prevent high bounces. To see the full list of role based emails that are removed, please click here.

List Plan Limitation

Your list upload could fail if you don’t have enough space in your account. If this is the case, you will see a warning message preventing you from uploading your list.

To continue uploading your list, you’ll need to upgrade to a plan better suited for the number of contacts you want to upload. Otherwise, you can delete contacts in your account to allow space for new contacts.

Wrong File Type

Benchmark Email can only accept the following file types: .csv (Comma Separated Value), .xls or .xlsx (Microsoft Excel), .txt (text files). If your file is not one of these types, you will not be able to upload it to your Benchmark Email account. Click Here to learn more about list formats accepted by Benchmark.

File Type and Extension Mismatch

When files are saved and reformatted, the file extension can sometimes not match the type of file it names. This can be caused when opening .csv files in Excel and re-saving. Excel will allow you to specify a ‘Save As Type’ for the file. This type must match the file extension, or an error will occur. For example, if you are saving a .xls file, but the extension is .csv, an error will occur. Pay close attention to the ‘Save As Type’ when saving files to avoid this problem.

Invalid Formatting

Invalid formatting examples can be found below:

  • All files must contain email addresses. If no valid email address is found, that line cannot be imported.
  • Each email address cannot exceed 80 characters.
  • Each row can only have one email address per line.
  • Your file must contain column headings. In the top row of your file, clearly label each column.
  • If you need column header ideas, here are some standard headers available in Benchmark Email: Email Address, First Name, Last Name, Middle Name
  • In most cases, columns will already exist in files types such as .xls. If your file type does not, you can indicate separate columns by using a comma ( , ), tab, or semicolon ( ; ).
  • Any empty or missing value in your file will be uploaded as a blank value in the corresponding column.
  • If the same email address is imported twice, the latest import will update your contact’s existing information. If the contact cannot be matched, their details will not be updated. (Tip: Updates to contact details are cumulative. For example, you can update your contacts’ “First Name” values by uploading one file and their “Last Name” values with another.)
Invalid Characters

Sometimes, invalid or incorrectly encoded characters can be part of a file. You may not be able to tell that your file has invalid characters just by looking at it, but if the Benchmark Email system comes across an invalid character in your file, uploading will not continue. If the character is found in the middle of your document, only a portion of your contacts may upload. If you notice this phenomenon, find the email address that seems to be the issue and try retyping it in your file editor of choice. This can eliminate invalid characters so your file will upload properly.

Examples can include pilcrows, page breaks, null characters, etc. These are also known as non-printable characters.

File Too Big

Since the file transfer is performed using HTTP (HyperText Transfer Protocol), we cannot upload files larger than 27 MB. If your file is larger than 27 MB, the transfer will timeout and not complete properly. If you have a very large list, you should break the main list into smaller sections for easier uploading.

If you have any questions or comments, feel free to contact us by Email, Live Chat or Phone.

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