Strategy Centre

Import, Export & Integrations

24 October 2013

Import, Export and Integrations

Often in ecommerce there is a need to integrate a number of systems within an organisation to cover the requirements for stock and related systems to be tied together. There can be integrations between IRP and other systems such as a PayPal or Affiliate Window. These are already available in the IRP.

There is often a need for integration with a company’s stock or ERP system that requires the IRP to be configured specifically for that scenario. This can be viewed as ‘Data Integration’ — the requirement to transfer information between a company’s internal system and the IRP. This may fall into three broad categories:

1. Moving a website to the IRP

When a company is moving its website to the IRP, all of the relevant data must also move to the IRP system. This includes all product information, customer information, content such as help systems and associated information such as reviews. As this is not recurring it can be seen as a “one-off integration”. It effectively only has to be carried out once when the website is ported to the IRP. This means that it can be a bespoke import procedure that only has to be performed once.

2. Importing a product data drop

Sometimes product information can be supplied in bulk from suppliers and a fast way to import the data is required. You can do this using the ‘Import Products’ subsection of the ‘Data Imports / Exports’ section in IRP Admin. Field names and information must be exact for data to be transferable to the IRP. This means that the initial data is examined and then manipulated in Microsoft Excel before the product is imported to the IRP.

3. Recurring integrations

Recurring integrations are processes that are carried out on a regular basis, where the information that is imported each time is in exactly the same format. These could be products, stock data, orders, supplier feeds or many other things. You use the ‘Integration’ section of IRP Admin to perform recurring integrations. You can import data on a recurring basis and ensure that the data is entered in the correct format for the IRP. This requires a mixture of field mapping and SQL manipulation.


The key thing with a ‘Data Integration’ is to ensure that it is completed accurately. There is no room for any error in a Data Integration – it is either correct or incorrect. While it is easy to integrate with an IRP, it is important to understand the field mappings required. We recommend that you speak to someone who is accredited in IRP Integration.

Once your data is there, it is important to remember that quality product data is absolutely key to your online success and your website conversion rate. Therefore having high-quality product information is a priority within an ecommerce operation.

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