To create a new email list from Excel, first go to the mailing lists menu by clicking the “Mailing Lists” link on the main navigation bar.
Then click the Create New List button on the top right.
SurveyMethods provides two types of email lists:
- Basic email lists, which consist of email addresses only (available for all account types).
- Advanced email lists, which are lists of email addresses that include up to 5 custom fields, which are additional information attached to the email that can be used in customizing your invitation email or welcome message, creating page logic, analyzing your data, and more. (For complete information on custom fields, visit our help article Using Custom Fields in SurveyMethods). Advanced email lists are available to Professional and Enterprise users only.
You can use the Excel import feature for either type of email list. For this example we’ll create an advanced email list. The process is the same for basic email lists but you will only have one column in your file, which will contain the email addresses.
On the next page, insert a name for your email list and click “Import from Excel”.
Click “Choose File” and select the Excel file from your computer.
Sample import file:
- Make sure you are importing from an Excel file (.xls or .xlsx). The application does not support .csv files or other formats. Helpful hint: If you do not have Microsoft Excel on your computer and need to convert a .csv file to an Excel file, you can likely simply change the file ending. If that doesn’t work, try importing into an open-source spreadsheet editor (such as Google Sheets) and then download the spreadsheet as an Excel file.
- The file should only have one sheet and it must be named “Sheet1” (the default Excel name for the first sheet). If the sheet name is different the system may not recognize the file.
- The email addresses must be in the first column (column A) and the first row of this column must read “Email Address”. Custom field values (if any) must be in columns two through six (B through F) with labels in the first row.
- The column headings should not contain email addresses and may contain only the following characters:
- Letters (A-Z, a-z)
- Numbers (0-9)
- Colon (:)
- Underscore (_)
- Equal sign (=)
- Period (.)
- Hyphen (-)
- Plus sign (+)
- Square bracket ([ ])
- Parentheses ( )
- Double quote (“)
- Question mark (?)
- Unicode characters are not allowed in email addresses.
- Email addresses cannot be blank or invalid, and must start from the second row.
- Each cell in the first column must contain a single email address.
- If you are not using all five of the available custom fields you can leave the unused fields blank.
- File size is limited to 500kb per import. If your file is too large, split it into several files and complete as many imports as needed.
- Invalid entries (e.g. email addresses in an incorrect format) will not be imported and the system will create a list of rejected entries. You can correct these errors in the new file and upload them to add to your list.
- Custom field values cannot contain commas (,) and must contain no more than 100 characters.
- Column labels must contain no more than 30 characters.
- If you are importing to a Basic Email List, or importing to the Master Opt-Out List, only email addresses from the first column will be imported.
Once you choose your email list and click Import, if it is successfully imported you will receive message below:
If the system encounters errors with certain entries, the valid entries will be imported and you will be given instructions to view and correct the rejected entries:
You can download the file of rejected entries by clicking the Download button. Correct any entries, save it as a new Excel file, and upload the file to your email list.
Once you’ve created an email list, you can import additional addresses by clicking the Import icon () on the Mailing Lists menu, and then following the same import procedure.
Who Can Use This Feature?
All accounts can import from Excel. Basic (Free) accounts are limited to no more than 5 email lists per account. Advanced accounts have no limit to the number of email lists but can only create Basic email lists. Professional and Enterprise Accounts can have unlimited Basic or Advanced email lists.