Adding multiple products at the same time to your catalogue
So, you have multiple products both new and/or existing that you need to add to your catalogue, and you don’t want to waste time adding them one by one. It is far quicker and easier to add multiple products into the Seller Central catalogue via a bulk upload using the Amazon new item setup (NIS) template.
Using the template to add multiple products can seem a little complex and daunting but it will spare you a lot of time and effort once you have learnt the process. Effectively, what you will be doing is downloading an Excel sheet (the Amazon NIS template), adding in all the product data, and uploading it back into Seller Central. The Excel sheet can be overwhelming with many columns and data fields; however, it is less daunting than you think, as these templates were designed for many different types of items. You will only actually need to fill in a small amount of the columns relevant to your own items while ignoring most of the other data fields on the sheet. A good tip is to run through the sheet and hide all the irrelevant columns that are not marked as required, this will tidy the sheet up for you and make it more pleasant to work with.
Downloading the correct NIS template in Seller Central
So, how do you obtain the correct template to work with in the first place? As a first step you will need to generate the correct template to download. These templates require different information depending on the category, so you need to select the closest product category for your items. You can then choose to customise your template or use the advanced one. If you are new to Amazon and bulk uploads, I suggest going with the advanced template until you are familiar with the fields that you want to be included.
To find and download the correct template, select ‘Inventory’ and then ‘Add Products via Upload’. This will take you to a page where you enter details of your product type e.g., trainers. From there you will be given the option to download the preferred template to work from depending on the browse node you want (category pathway and category under which the product will sit on the website). Once you select the template you want and specify the country/regions you will be selling in (you can select multiple regions), click on ‘Generate template’ and the download process will begin. Save the file with a version number and open it with Excel. By default the file will be protected so make sure you first enable editing and then go to ‘File’, ‘Info’ and select the option to unprotect the document.
The Excel NIS template
It can be quite overwhelming when you first open the template as there are so many numerous columns asking for things that may have nothing to do with your items, it is a lot easier to complete however than what it looks like at first glance. The sheet contains many tabs, the one you want is the one named ‘template’. Certain fields are required while others are optional, and some fields will have a drop down from which you can select the most relevant option.
If the products already exist in the catalogue, you will only want to include the required data, these are identified by either having cells with red borders or are categorised as ’required’ in the heading. If you don’t have all the required information, it is always worth trying to upload the file anyway as sometimes Amazon will still accept the upload.
If you are the brand owner you will want to include as much data as possible, especially the bullet points, search terms and product description as these are key pieces of information used to enable your products to be discovered in search results and convert customers into buyers.
How to upload your completed NIS template
Once the template has been completed, you will then need to upload the file into the system.
So, to go ahead and list your items on the live site, either select ‘Add a Product’ or ‘Add Products Via Upload’ from the dropdown menus under ‘Catalogue’ or ‘Inventory’. You can also select ‘I’m uploading a file to add multiple products’ from the category search section. When uploading the file, make sure you have completed all the required fields in the correct format. Failure to complete the template correctly and it will be rejected.
Want to check if your items are uploaded successfully after submitting your NIS template? To see the status of the upload, go to the third tab ‘Monitor upload status’ after you have uploaded your template, Amazon will usually take you to this page automatically anyway. Here you will see the details of the file you uploaded, it will start off by processing and then once complete it will confirm how many items were a success during the upload and if there were any errors. Any errors will prevent the products from being set up. If you are uploading 20 products, 10 are a success and 10 have errors, those 10 which uploaded successfully will feed to the catalogue and the pages will go live on Amazon but the other 10 won’t. The 10 items with the errors will need to be addressed before you can try and upload those items again and for this reason, it is good practice to give version numbers to the file names as you may need to upload more than one version of your template. To see what the errors are, you can download and view the status file, it will provide details of why the items were rejected for you to fix. It takes some time getting used to using and editing the NIS template so don’t be alarmed if your file gets rejected a few times at the start, you will get there in the end and it does get quicker and easier.
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