From this article, you will learn how to import variable products into WooCommerce using Dropshipping XML.
This is Marcin. Marcin is the main developer of the Dropshipping XML WooCommerce plugin. He is the one who coded it from start to finish. He adds every new feature and fixes bugs.
It so happened that a few weeks ago I came to Marcin and said:
- Listen, Marcin, Dropshipping XML users lack support for importing variable products into WooCommerce, shall we add it?
- Okay! - Marcin replied.
So we started... :)
...by doing an analysis, which showed that your wholesalers create XML files with different structures of products and variations of products. Based on conversations (with those of you who wrote back :P), we highlighted 3-4 XML structures that we should handle to cover most scenarios to properly import variable products into WooCommerce.
Down below, I described how we handled this, but first I bring in a bit of context:
About the Dropshipping XML WooCommerce plugin
Since the first deployment, the Dropshipping XML plugin has given the ability to regularly import products into your shop from CSV and XML files. For several months we have been working on XML files support with various structures, adapting it to the requirements of your shops. However, the import logic itself (in the frontend) has not changed and is based on four configuration steps:
- Adding a file,
- Indicating a "branch" with product tags in the XML/CSV file,
- Mapping tags from the XML/CSV file with product fields in WooCommerce,
- Synchronization settings,
Import of the variable products has modified the third step slightly. There we added the Variants tab similar to the one you find in WooCommerce product editing.
Here ends the similarities between the product edition in Woo and the import edition of Dropshipping XML WooCommerce. In the plugin, you won't find standard variations' settings, but you will find four ways of variants mapping. Choosing the right mapping method depends on the structure of the XML file from your wholesaler.
Okay, I'll finish with the description and repeat the question from the title:
How to import variable products into WooCommerce?
Below you can read about the four ways to import variable products into WooCommerce that the Dropshipping XML WooCommerce plugin currently provides.
Import of variants based on product names in the file
This applies to files in which the variant products have the same name. When this option is selected, variants from the file will be identified by the plugin based on the product name. They will be imported into WooCommerce as variants of a product whose name they share.
Import variants based on SKU number
This option will work for files where variants of one product are grouped by SKU number. To correctly map WooCommerce products with products from a file, specify (by drag and drop) an XPath to the SKU field in the file. The SKU value will be imported to the SKU field in the main product settings.
If the variants in the file don't have the main product, no value will go into the SKU field in WooCommerce. Why? Because the SKU is a unique number that can only be applied once - to one product.
Import variant products based on a unique identifier
This option will work very similarly to mapping using SKUs. Also, you need to point the XPath to the correct tag in the file. The difference is that the product ID will not be imported to any WooCommerce field.
If you care about importing the product identifier (because, for example, it's the EAN or GTIN code), it should be additionally mapped with a WooCommerce attribute in the Attributes tab.
Import of variant products + mapping of variant fields with main product field
This import is the hardest one to explain. In short, we have noticed that some suppliers, when creating their XML/CSV file, distinguish the main product with an identifier that is the parent for the child identifiers next to the variants.
In the plugin, we gave the option to indicate an XPath to the parent ID and a separate path to the child ID. As a result, we map the variant ID with the parent ID. Then we import the variant products together with the main product into WooCommerce preserving their structure in the file.
As you can see, importing products to WooCommerce is a huge task. I hope that the changes in the plugin will allow you to implement the import scenarios of your stores.
Let us know! Marcin and I pay for every positive rate with a smile and more effort :)
Also, I encourage you to check out the plugin in our Demo and to visit the product page: