Feeds

Feeds form the heart of your site. Just about any CSV file can be imported into your database. DF/Manager has been tested with feed from a number of renowned networks:

  • Zanox | M4N*
  • TradeDoubler
  • TradeTracker*
  • Daisycon

* Supported by the Networks plugin.

Don't worry if your favorite network is not listed here. As long as the network can supply feeds in CSV format, DF/Manager can almost certainly import them.

Click the New feed button to create a feed, enter a name, url and optional network name and click save. You are redirected to the feed detail screen:

  • Name
    The name is used to identify the feed and also to store a cached version of the downloaded data on your server. Therefore the name must be unique. Entering a name that already exists generates an error message.
  • Url
    The url specifies where the datafeed can be downloaded. Paste this from you datafeed provider.
  • Network
    You may choose to enter an optional network name to make it easier to keep your feeds apart.
  • Auto download
    If checked the feed will be downloaded when the maintenance cron-job runs. Note that Auto import needs to be checked also to actually import the downloaded feed.
  • Import download method
    Allows the global Import download method to be overridden for each individual feed. If the value is set to Default, then the global setting is used. Setting it to another value overrides the global setting.
  • Auto import
    If checked the feed will be imported when the maintenance cron-job runs.
  • Merchant
    The name of the merchant is usually the name of the web shop.
  • Merchant Image Url
    If you have a logo of the merchant, enter a url to the image here. For optimal results the image should be approximately 100 pixels wide and no more than 50 pixels in height.
  • Merchant Description
    Merchant descriptions are displayed on the merchants page ([yoursite]/m/[merchantname]). Enter some unique content to describe your merchant to help your site rank better in search engines. 
  • Brand
    If your feed does not contain brand information, or if you want to override brand information, you may specify a brand. All products of the feed will get their brand field updated to this value at time of import. 
  • File Type

    Select CSV. Use the Detect format to attempt to automatically detect the format in which the feed was saved. Although is most cases this works fine, some feeds cannot be automatically detected. Always check your products after importing to see if all is well.
    • Has header
      Check this if the CSV file's first row contains field names (headers).
    • Separator
      Select the field separator.
    • Enclosing
      Select the field enclosing character.
      Tip: if you find your product names or descriptions are enclosed in quotes after importing, then your Enclosing settings is probably wrong. 
  • Key Format

    Specify how product keys are formated. Product keys are used to identify products in your database, hence they must be unique. As product keys identify products, they are also used in the url's of your site. For SEO purposes you may want to pay special attention the the formatting of keys to gain best results in search engines. You can use placeholders to construct the key from different datafeed fields. The placeholder format is {{csv-field}} , where you replace csv-field with name of the field you want to use. Special DF/Manageer placeholders are {{dfm-feed-id}} and {{dfm-record-count}}, which insert the feed-id and record count respectively. A good practice is to use the product name (SEO) together with a unique key. Most datafeeds provide both fields. 

    Example: a datafeed has a name and a product-id field. To construct unique keys, enter the following Key Format:
    {{name}}-{{product-id}}.

    Another example: you feed has a title and an EAN field. A good Key Format might be {{title}}_{{EAN}}. 

    When the Key Format field is left empty, the default format "{{dfm-feed-id}}-{{dfm-record-count}}" is used. This ensures unique keys, but has one major disadvantage: it changes as products get added or removed for the feed by your merchant. This in turn changes the urls at which products are available on your site. From a SEO point of view this should be prevented at all time.

    Please note that changing the key-format most likely destroys relations between products and reviews, compilations and click statistics!

  • Max Insert Grouping
    With the default value of 1 no insert grouping is used. During import records get inserted one-by-one. A higher value groups a number of inserts into a single statement which are then send to the database. This helps performance considerably as the database can perform inserts much more efficient. The downside however is the lack of error handling. When inserts are grouped and a single insert in the group fails, all inserts in the group fail. Without any way to tell which insert was responsible for the error. Thus it is recommended you set Max Insert Grouping to 1 until you are sure it performs as expected. Experimentation has shown that setting Max Insert Grouping between 50 and 200 gives good results. Higher values don't add performance.
  • Remarks
    Remarks for your own personal use.

When importing feeds, the encoding of the data file should match the application wide encoding set in /config/core.php; the default value is UTF-8. Feeds encoded in other formats may need additional filtering (UTF-8 encoding) to produce readable text. If your product data contains garbled characters -squares or diamonds with question marks- this is a clear sign that there is an encoding problem.

Some feeds contain HTML encoded entities like &. These may have to decoded to produce readable characters. Use the Decode HTML entities filter on the appropriate fields.

Download feed

Click Download feed to manually download the feed data from the specified url. The feed is cached in the /app/tmp/cache/feeds folder on your web server. This button is disabled when no (valid) url is specified.

Import feed

Click Import feed to manually import the feed. This button is disabled when field mapping is incomplete.

Clone feed

Click Clone feed to copy the current feed to a new one. Related products are not clones, only the settings, field mappings, filters, etc. The cached datafeed file is not cloned either.

Delete feed's products

Click Delete feed's products to delete all related products from the database. There is no undo possible.

Delete feed

Click Delete feed to remove the feed, its field mappings, filters and products from the database. There is no undo possible.

Fields

The fields tab displays the fields in the current datafeed. On this tab you map datafeed fields to DF/Manager fields. Read more...

Filters

The Filters tab displays and manages import filters. Read more...

Categories

The Categories tab displays which categories have been imported. This tab is empty for feeds which have not been imported yet. For reference only.