With Contacts Journal, you can directly import your contacts list from a CSV (comma-seperated values) file. With this feature, you can quickly and easily import contacts information as well as Custom Fields for your contacts. At the time of import, you can even define what 'type' of information your Custom Fields contains (e.g. Text, List, Date, etc), making it easier to categorize your contacts.
To access this feature, you need to be running macOS Monterey or iOS 15.0, with the latest version of the Contacts Journal app. For other situations, you can use the "Import using vCard Files" instructions to see how to convert an Excel/CSV file into a vCard file and them import that.
Import using CSV Files
From the main Contacts list page in the Contacts Journal Mac app, press the + button and select the "Import CSV File" option, and select the CSV file you want to import.
You will then be presented with a page which previews how the column names are mapped to their Contacts Journal fields.
The basic contact fields (like phone number, emails etc) are mapped automatically, and any extra columns with values are mapped to Custom Fields. If the Custom Field with that name already exists in Contacts Journal, the values will be added to that field and a new field won't be created.
For new Custom Fields, you can specify different 'types' of columns here as well. For e.g. 'List' will create a new Custom Field of type List, with new list values for each unique value in that column. 'Date' columns need to in the ISO-8601 format "yyyy-mm-dd" (for e.g. 2020-06-20). You can also choose "Append to Notes" to add the values in the Notes field instead, and also "Exclude from Import" to ignore that column.
When you're satisfied with the column mappings, click Continue, to see a preview of the contacts that are going to be imported.
Clicking on the (i) button in front of the contact will show you all the information that is going to be saved for that contact. You can also remove a contact from the import.
You can also specify some options at the time of import, by clicking on the 'Options' blue button (next to the 'Cancel' button):
Here, you can select if you want to save the contacts as "Private Contacts", give some defaults for the phone, email and address labels, and even create a Private Group for the imported contacts.
On selecting the "Import Contacts" button, the contacts will then be imported into the app.
Some notes about importing CSV files:
- you need to specify some 'name' columns, either using FirstName/LastName split columns, or one Full Name column. If you don't have any name columns, the import will give hoy an error.
- Each column name should be unique. If you have a duplicate column name in the file, the app will crash when you try to import the file
- There shouldn't be any extra trailing columns, or extra rows in the file.
- For phones, emails and addresses, you can specify a label in the column header name (e.g. Home Address, Work Address). Else it will use the default label specified in the Options page.
- A column that is imported as a Custom Fields with the 'date' type has to have values that are in ISO8601 format "yyyy-mm-dd"
- currently only UTF-8 format is supported. Let us know if you have other format requirements
Import using vCard Files
On both iOS and Mac apps, you can import contacts into the app with vCard files. If you have an Excel or CSV file, the best way to convert it into vCard format is Gmail contacts. You can use these instructions to import a list of contacts in Excel into a Gmail account:
Importing CSV Into Google Contacts
[you could create a new account just for this purpose if you don't want to use your personal Gmail account]
- Go to the old version of Google Contacts.
- In the top left, click More Import.
- Click Choose File.
- Select your CSV file.
- Click Import.
Exporting Contacts into vCard
Now you can export the contacts list to a vCard file:
- Go to Google Contacts.
- Choose which contacts you want to export:
- To select specific contacts: Check the boxes next to their names. Then click More Export.
- To select a group of contacts: Click More Export, then choose the group.
- Save your contacts as a vCard file.
- To save your file, click Export.
Once you have the vCard file ready, you're set!
Import Contacts from a vCard file
You can import contacts from a vCard file in one of two ways:
a. From the main Contacts list page in CJournal, press the + button and select "Import vCard" and follow the instructions there to import the vCard file over WiFi.
b. Email the vCard file to yourself. Then open the email in the Mail app, and tap-and-hold the file for a second, and a context menu will show up, where you can select the ’Share’ option. From the share sheet, look at the list of apps you can share with. If you see the “Copy to CJournal” option (with those exact words … don’t select the option that just says “CJournal”), then select that. If not, horizontally scroll to the end and select “More”, then look in the full list for the “Copy to CJournal” option, and select it. That should open the CJournal app and give you the option to import the vCard file.