Learn More: Vendor Inventory Feeds

What is an inventory feed?

An inventory feed is any supplier- or warehouse-provided data that contains inventory information.

Duoplane is able to take most inventory feeds as-is, map the data properly, and update your product catalog with the new information.

Vendor feeds are often hosted on a web or FTP server, or they are periodically emailed by vendors. Duoplane can handle any of those requirements. You also have the option to manually upload inventory files that you receive directly.

 

Set up an inventory feed

To configure Duoplane to read in inventory information from your supplier or warehouse:

  1. In your vendor management dashboard (Main Menu > Vendors), search for the vendor you would like to configure.
  2. Select the vendor to open that vendor’s record.
  3. In the section Inventory feed and sync, click the Edit button.
  4. Fill in the details of the inventory feed and click the Save button. Below is an explanation of each option.

 

Column / field mappings

How the data coming from your vendor maps to Duoplane’s standard inventory fields

Unique product reference The column heading for the column containing the unique identifier for this item.

 

In order for Duoplane to correctly identify which of your items corresponds to each of your vendor’s items, this must match exactly with an existing field in the Duoplane product record. Valid fields to match against are: retailer_sku, vendor_sku, upc, mpn, other_barcode.

Cost The column heading for the item wholesale cost, if you wish to automatically update this from the vendor feed.
Quantity available The column heading for the quantity available for sale.
Backorder date If the item is out of stock, the date on which new stock is expected to arrive.

 

To be certain that dates are interpreted correctly, all dates should be in ISO 8601 format. (In other words, “YYYY-MM-DD”.) While other common formats are understood and can be parsed, using non-ISO formats may result in an incorrect interpretation of the date.

In stock flag The field is for vendors who only provide a “yes” or “no” for whether products are in- or out-of-stock, the column that holds this information.

 

Any of the following values means that the product is out of stock (case insensitive): “n”, “no”, “false”, or “0”. Blank values also mean that the product is out of stock. Any other value means that the product is in stock.

 

File format

Details about the file that Duoplane will be processing

File format The type of file that Duoplane should expect to see. Options are CSV, Excel (XLS or XLSX), XML, or Google Spreadsheet.
CSV field separator If the file format is CSV, the character that separates the columns. Common separators are comma (,), tab, or semicolon (;). Default is comma (,).
CSV field quoting If the file format is CSV, the character used to encapsulate a single field. Field encapsulation is required if the field contains a special character like the CSV field separator (e.g. a comma) or a line break. Default is double quotes (“).
Character encoding If your file contains non-English words or characters, it may have been saved using an encoding that Duoplane cannot auto-detect.

 

We recommend leaving blank unless you know the encoding. If the file is not working as expected and you suspect encoding is the issue, please contact us, and we will be able to help determine the proper setting here.

Skip line numbers Specify the line numbers of any lines that should be ignored when reading the file. This is useful if the file contains extra headers or footers.

 

Ranges and individual numbers are acceptable. For example, you can enter: “1-3,10” to skip lines 1, 2, 3, and 10.

Sheet number (Excel only) For multi-sheet Excel files, specify which sheet contains the inventory data. Note that the first sheet is number zero (0).

 

Remote file access (optional)

How Duoplane can access the data

(Specify only if Duoplane can fetch the remote data from a hosted location. If you plan to manually upload files, you do not need to include the remote file access detail.)

Protocol The network protocol or scheme. Options are: http, https, ftp, sftp, ftps,ftpes or inbound email.

 

If Duoplane is receiving the inventory file by email, we will generate a unique email address for this vendor. You can forward the vendor’s inventory file to that email address or ask them to send to that email directly.

Host address The part of the URL of the host after the protocol. E.g. www.example.com
Path to file For HTTP(S) and (S)FTP, this is the part of the URL that follows the host address.

 

E.g. if the full URL is ftp://feeds.example.com/files/new_stock.csv, the host is “feeds.example.com” and the path is “files/new_stock.csv”.

The wildcard character (*) is supported for the file name. If multiple files are found that match using a wildcard search, the last file will be returned (sorted by file name).

Login name If accessing the file requires user authentication, this is the user name of the authorized account.

 

Please note that for HTTP(S)-hosted files, the server must support HTTP authentication. Duoplane cannot enter authentication credentials into a web form in order to access the file.

Login password If accessing file requires user authentication, this is the password of the authorized account.
Fetch frequency How often Duoplane should fetch the data file.
Rename file after download For FTP downloads, this determines whether Duoplane should change the name of the file on the server to indicate that it has been processed. This is useful if your warehouse uploads new inventory files but does not remove old ones.

 

If the file that you are accessing is a shared resource that is also viewed by others, set this to “No”.

Please note that the FTP user must have the ability to rename files in order for this option to work.

File rename template If “Rename file after download” is set to “Yes”, this template determines the name of the renamed file. The template is a Liquid template that takes a single external variable: {{ original_file_name }}.

 

 


Special instructions for files hosted on Dropbox

  1. From Dropbox, grab the “Share link” for the file holding the inventory information:dropbox_share_link.png
  2. Make sure that the file is accessible to anyone with the link.
  3. Copy the displayed link to your clipboard. The link should look something like this:
    https://www.dropbox.com/s/asfbarga5a42xdg2x/furniture_inventory.csv?dl=0
  4. Paste the link into a text editor.
  5. IMPORTANT: You will see that the provided link either ends with the file name or with the file name followed by “?dl=0”. We need to change the URL so that Dropbox provides Duoplane with a direct download of the file.
    1. If it ends with the file name (e.g. “furniture_inventory.csv”) add “?dl=1” to the URL
    2. If it ends with “?dl=0”, change the zero (0) to a one (1) ending so that it reads “?dl=1”
  6. Use the “?dl=1” URL in your Duoplane feed configuration:
    1. Protocol: https
    2. Host: www.dropbox.com
    3. Path: s/asfbarga5a42xdg2x/furniture_inventory.csv?dl=1
    4. Username and passwordBlank

 


Special instructions for data files hosted on Google Drive

(These instructions are for Excel or CSV files that are stored on a Google Drive. If the data is in a Google Sheet, please see the separate instructions for setting up a feed from Google Sheets.)

  1. In the Google Drive account, select the file and edit its Sharing Settings
  2. In the window the pops up, copy the sharing link and set the sharing settings to allow either “Anyone with the link” to view the document, or explicitly share it with “support@duoplane.com”.
  3. Paste the sharing link into a text editor.
  4. The URL should be in the form:
    https://drive.google.com/file/d/[FILE_ID]/edit?usp=sharing

    (where “[FILE_ID]” is the unique file ID provided by Google)

  5. Create a new URL using the FILE_ID in the form so that it looks like this:
    https://drive.google.com/uc?export=download&id=[FILE_ID]
  6. Use that URL in configuring the inventory feed:
    1. Protocol: https
    2. Host: drive.google.com
    3. Path: uc?export=download&id=[FILE_ID]
    4. Username and passwordBlank

 


Special instructions for data stored in a Google spreadsheet

  1. In the Google Drive account, select the Google Sheet and edit its Sharing Settings
  2. In the window the pops up, copy the sharing link and set the sharing settings to allow either “Anyone with the link” to view the document, or explicitly share it with “support@duoplane.com”.
    1. The URL should be in the form:
      https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/asfbarga5a42xdg2x
  3. Use that URL in configuring your inventory feed:
    1. Protocol: https
    2. Host: docs.google.com
    3. Path: spreadsheets/d/asfbarga5a42xdg2x
    4. Username and passwordblank

Fetch inventory data

You can have Duoplane fetch inventory automatically, or you can manually trigger an update.

Automatic

If the Remote File Access is properly configured, you can set Duoplane up to automatically retrieve and update inventory at regular intervals.

Just set the Fetch frequency in your Remote Access settings to your desired retrieval interval.

Manual

To manually import a vendor inventory file:

  1. Navigate to Products > Inventory Feeds
  2. Select the vendor whose inventory file you would like to import.
  3. Verify that the file column mappings are correct in the “Expected inventory file columns for [Vendor name]” section.
  4. Specify the file location:
    1. Remotely hosted file: If Remote File Access is configured for this vendor, Duoplane can retrieve the inventory data from the remote location.
    2. File on your computer: You can also upload a file and have Duoplane process it using the file column mappings for this vendor.
  5. Click the Process import button.

Upload Feeds via the Duoplane Portal

Retailers and vendors can also upload inventory feeds in the Duoplane portal.

To upload as a retailer, you can navigate to the Products Tab, then the Inventory feed tab. Next, you’ll select the vendor you would like to upload inventory information for, click continue, and upload the file.

Snip20200203_12.png

For a vendor to have the option to upload inventory feeds via the portal, the retailer will first need to enable that option for that specific vendor. To do this, you can go to the vendor record, then click Edit under Inventory feed and Sync. Next, you can scroll down and toggle “Allow upload via portal” to ON.

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Once that option is set to on, the vendor can click the Inventory tab in their account and upload their feed.

Snip20200203_10.png

 

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