WP All Import 3.0 Review – CSV and XML Import Plugin for WordPress

Today we are reviewing WP All Import, a plugin that makes it easy to import CSV files into WordPress. There is a free version available on WordPress.org, but in this review I'll be using the Pro version to show you all that's possible with this plugin.
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Today we are reviewing WP All Import, a plugin that makes it easy to import CSV and XML files into WordPress.

There is a free version available on WordPress.org, but in this review I’ll be using the Pro version to show you all that’s possible with this plugin.

The Pro version has these extra features:

  • Import to Custom Post Types
  • Cron Job/Recurring Imports
  • Import data to Custom Fields
  • Import images to the post media gallery
  • Import files from a URL or FTP server
  • Execution of Custom PHP Functions on data

The Best WordPress CSV   XML Import Plugin   WP All Import v3

Pro version customers also get access to the customer portal with documentation and tutorials, and e-mail technical support.

I’m sure most of you will have already taken a look at the plugin’s listing on WordPress.org, so before we continue I’d like to say a word about that. If you take a look at reviews section, you will find that there are a few negative opinions about the plugin, and it only as a 3 star rating.

Don’t let that discourage you though. The main reason of this lukewarm rating is that previous versions sometimes proved problematic when importing large amounts of data (solved in version 3), as well as the fact that no plugin support is offered through the WordPress.org plugin forums.

The WP All Import guys prefer it if users open a ticket via email, and while I still recommend that they offer support through the forum, this fact is clearly mentioned when one goes to the support forum, so it’s up to the users to read the instructions and contact support via email. Email support works fine, the developers respond in a timely way and most issues are swiftly resolved.

With that out of the way, lets get to the fun stuff and start looking at the features of WP All Import.

Features

WP All Import can import any XML or CSV datafeed. I’ve been using the plugin successfully for quite some time now, but version 3 made a big step ahead, solving the one issue that kept recurring with older versions: the import of very large files.

With the release of WP All Import v3, the plugin can handle files of 100Mb and larger, with any 10,000+ records, on shared hosting. Obviously it’s well worth reading up upon performance considerations inherent to your server and WordPress itself, and the guys at WP All Import have done a good job at customer education on this topic on the How Big Can Files Be page on their site. WP All Import supports scheduled cron-based imports, so you don’t have to sit and watch the import take place for two days. WP All Import can do it in the background. 

So let’s take a closer look at the features of WP All Import.

The main functionality of the plugin revolves around a wizard process that takes you through five steps for importing a new CSV or XML file into your WordPress website.

Step 1 – Select file

choose-file-3
Choosing the file you wish to import

The first step is that of choosing the XML or CSV file you want to upload. I like to repeat one point about this plugin, it is very flexible. Take a look at the upload screen for example. You have four available sources from which the data can be imported:

  • From your Computer
  • From a URL
  • From an FTP Server
  • From an already uploaded file

Very straightforward and giving you all the options you need. And we’re off to a great start. WP All import will start its process and parse through the file…

Step 2 – Element Selection

File parsed, selecting which elements to import.
File parsed, selecting which elements to import.

WP All Import has parsed our file and gives us a breakdown of all the elements in the file. Do you want to take just a few elements, or all of them? It’s you choice! Did I mention how flexible this plugin is?

Step 3 – Template Designer

Not only import data, but decide how it should look.
Not only import data, but decide how it should look.

Things are starting to get interesting. The file is imported and you’ve got all the data available to play with. You will see the familiar post editor with a title and content area. You are now free to drop in tags from the right hand side into your title or content fields, as well as add your own content, which will then be used as the base template. You can save the template with a new for re-use at a later stage.

Step 4 – Options

Options and more options
Options and more options

You’re nearing the end, you can now choose from a myriad number of options, but the big ones are whether to import into a particular custom post type, whether you want to place some data in custom fields (e.g. price) and also automatic creation of tags and categories. Again, flexibility is the order of the day.

Import complete! Go have some fun.
Import complete! Go have some fun.

Did I say there were 5 steps? Well, not quite, on the last screen you just enjoy watching your data uploading, or go make yourself a cup of coffee if it’s a big file. So it’s 4 steps requiring your input, and one watching the fruits of your work. Really easy right?

That’s the basic usage of WP All Import, what you use the data for and what kind of data you import is up to your imagination, the bottom line is this plugin is a huge time saver and provides a ton of value for users and developers alike. We shouldn’t forget the scheduled import feature, which is essential to such plugins. Once you create a new import, you can then set a schedule and have the import repeat itself automatically without any user intervention necessary. Thus you can keep all the information on the site constantly updated.

Do you prefer seeing some tangible examples? Check out the demo page showing some sites built entirely using WP All Import and feeds from other websites such as Commission Junction.

I’ve also gone ahead and created a video walkthrough for you, in case you’ve done enough reading for the day and prefer something more passive:

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PhITzUCANco[/youtube]

What Can I Use This For?

WP All Import is maybe not that kind of plugin most WordPress users need on a daily basis, however there are a number of use-cases where it will turn out to be very useful, if not essential.

Here are some typical usage scenarios for WP All Import:

  • Affiliate stores
  • Content sites
  • Local directories
  • eCommerce sites
  • Real estate portals
  • Auto dealerships

example sites wp all import

On their website, the guys at WP All Import have uploaded a number of videos that show you how they created sites for each of these scenarios.

Cost & Licensing

Until March 31st, the Standard license is priced at $99 and the Developer license is priced at $199.

Beginning April 1st, the Standard license will be priced at $199 and the Developer license will be priced at $299. The difference with the two is that the Developer licence allows you to use the plugin to build a site for a client, then transfer ownership of that site + the plugin itself to your client. Both allow you unlimited usage and updates.

Considering the value provided by this plugin and the fact that it is quite unique, I believe the price is justified. If you’re interested in getting this plugin, I strongly suggest you take advantage of the current offer and save $100 on either the Standard or Developer licenses.

You can upgrade from the Standard licence to the Developer licence at any point in time by paying the difference.

A 30 day guarantee is also offered so you’re not risking anything, although truth be told you’re not likely to make use of this guarantee, as it’s a solid plugin indeed.

WP All Import can be used on an unlimited number of websites and you also get free lifetime updates. For those of you wondering what a lifetime update policy means, lifetime updates means that you will get free updates for the lifetime of the product.

Support & Documentation

If you have a problem while using the plugin, you can open a support ticket, which will be attended to by Louis Reingold (the main man behind this project) or his development team. Tickets are reviewed throughout the day so you’re likely to get a timely response to your support request.

There is also a new customer area which has been implemented in conjunction with the release of version 3 of the plugin. From the customer area users can download the plugin, access documentation & tutorials, and access the special resources section.

WP Mayor Verdict

This is the best plugin I’ve found for importing large CSV files, I’ve used it successfully for client sites and we’ve had no problems at all. I would prefer if the plugin developer would adhere more closely to the WordPress UI, but there’s nothing major there and functionality wise the plugin does the job its supposed to do.

Don’t take my word for it though, see what Brad Williams (a WordPress veteran) had to say about WP All Import:

brad williams

At the end of the day, you should be the judge, so go ahead and download the free version of this plugin. If you like it and you need the Pro features, you’ll know what to expect when dropping coin for the $99 or $199 Pro versions.

If you’re looking for the best CSV import plugin for WordPress, WP All Import is currently your top choice.

Get WP All Import

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Jean Galea
Jean Galea
Jean Galea is a WordPress developer, entrepreneur and padel player. He is the founder of WP Mayor, the plugins WP RSS Aggregator and EDD Bookings, as well as the Mastermind.fm podcast. His personal blog can be found at jeangalea.com.

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15 Responses

  1. Im having all sorts of issues with it .. the plugin and the email help isnt really that much help even though on occasions they have helped me …

    The problems im having is though i can import xml feeds and set them as eCommerce pages being that i have payed for the all import and the woo commerce add on plugin the whole thing times out … so in other words i import the xml file but if i wish to delete it , it will not delete and i have to keep pressing the delete button in the all import settings….Eventually it will delete but not before trying for over two hours or so….what is happening is it is deleting segments of the file say images first them other things untill its small enough to delete the whole thing ….Ive been told its a server issue which might be the case…

    Anyway that aside…i cant update the xml file and though i set the plugin to make drafts of any thing that has no images it still publishes the page ….

    Ive written constantly to all import for help and its annoying becouse i just feel like im repeating my self over and over gain …

    Eventually they wrote back and told me i should concider a refund but a refund is not…

    what i want ..i want this plugin to work as it says it should …i am totally reliant on this plugin now

    I have over 10000 products on my site so why should this be causing a problem ..

    Im desperate for help on this as im falling behind in my work and have clients waiting

    1. Nicholas, it seems like this is something that the guys behind the plugin need to help you with, as its a technical issue. I’m however interested in how you are using it, do you build such websites for your clients?

  2. Hi Guys,

    Nice Post. I am having a problem on WP All Import for which i am unable to find a solution, I am working on an affiliate store which gets XML feeds from different online stores having products in different prices and currency symbols like EURO, USD and POUND, I am using POUND as my base currency.

    Once I import the xml feed (in EURO) it shows the same price with the POUND sign on my shop site without converting it into POUND.

    How do I show the xml feed price converted into my base currency (POUND).

    Thanks

  3. Not sure how to say this, but does this XML feed importer work for a constantly updating XML feed? In other words, does it support embedding content from an XML feed that changes daily (e.g. product pricing from another database)?

  4. WP Import All Pro 4.29 is working fantastically. Not sure what these people above are having issues with (if you’re still using v3 then update!). I upload my files via ftp to the site’s server (to the specified folder) and the files appear in the import list. Cron jobs also work so I can upload a file before I leave work and have it update overnight during off-peak hours. Superb plugin – saved me a load of time.

  5. So does this still work with FTP? I need to import a file via FTP from a third-party server that they supplied credential for.

  6. Hi,
    Does anyone know why on earth the Woocommerce Add-on is missing from the WP All Import interface?
    Although they both installed and activated well…

    Both are latest versions (WP All import 4.3.1 and Woocommerce Add-on 2.3.0)

    Please anyone help!!
    TYA

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