Initial Inventory Set Up

This may seem like a basic question so I apologize in advance if it is. I am starting to use lightspeed for the first time this year. My current inventory system is pretty bare bones - a spreadsheet is really it and it gets updated for year end.

I need to build my stores inventory obviously. I am curious if it would be worth my time to send my spreadsheet in for upload, keeping in mind that it doesnt contain SKUs, UPC codes, or vendors. It has brand, manufacturer, cost and price. If they upload that inventory can we print all of our tags, and then as we move forward check in future items correctly with all the necessary info?

Or would it be better at this point to hit reset, start from scratch and scan all the UPC codes of items in my store?

Thank you in advance for your input.

1 comment

  • VD_LSVD_LS Administrator, Moderator, Lightspeed Staff Posts: 796 moderator

    Hey @Anthony_127 ,

    The best way to print out labels would be to perform the import yourself. Not all columns are required when you're importing items for the first time, however there are things that will work to your benefit, like being able to import the quantities (this is only possible when creating the item for the first time. The import tool will not import quantities after the items exist in the Lightspeed system.)

    Here are some best-practices when attempting to create inventory using the import tool: 

    • Have Lightspeed Open side-by-side in the inventory > New item tab or the inventory > Matrix > +New Matrix
      • This is to help you visualize where in Lightspeed the column headers go and how they will display when they get imported. 
      • This also helps to know what Matrix Attribute Sets you're using rather than going from memory
    • The column headers, when working with the manual import tool, will allow you to map out the headers to where they will be dropped in Retail, so the name of each column won't be as important as mapping them.
    • Matrix Attribute set order matter
      • Example : If you choose Color/Size as your Attribute set, your Attribute 1 column will always be Color and Attribute 2 will always be Size. 
    • If you fill in a name for your product in the Description column, leave the Matrix Description column empty and vice versa.
      • When you fill in the Description column, the system will try to create a single item, whereas if you try to populate a Matrix Description, the system will attempt to create a Matrix hub for your products
      • Both together will give you an error message because you cannot create both a single item and a matrix hub at the same time
      • If you choose the Attribute Set Color, only populate information in Attribute 1. The Attribute 2 and Attribute 3 columns should be empty. 
    • Finally, if you're thinking of importing item images, you can consult the Importing Item Images article for a how-to as well. 
    • Forgot where to go to import your items? You can use the Importing Items flow article for a visual guide.
    • If you feel you'd like more guidance, you can consult our Guide to importing items article 
    • If you want to know the limitations of the columns you're attempting to import (like a maximum amount of characters, or limitations to using numbers etc), you can review our Importing inventory data Support Article 
    • If you see an import "awaiting validation" it is waiting for your to import a corrected version of your import based off of the export it offers with error messages that it identified.
    • Shop Quantity column can only be used when the inventory items have never been created before. 
      • If you want to modify the shop quantity on hand of your products after your initial import, you'll need to either process a Purchase Order to add products, Vendor Return to remove products or modify the inventory manually by going into the item's inventory tab.
    • If you don't use some of the columns (like UPC) feel free to delete it, the tool will be able to overlook most missing columns (Descriptions OR matrix descriptions columns are required when creating items, though) 
    • When you set up Categories, we suggest against having more than 3 sub-categories for reporting ease. (more than 3 can cause confusion in the reports)
    • 1 line per item, do not separate your products attributes with commas.
      • For Matrices, this means you can copy/paste the line for the attribute sets and simply populate the missing information for the product variations
      • Since the file you're working with uses commas to separate the values, it's important that each item created takes up 1 line. 

    Hopefully this helps a little bit! If you have an old POS export for your products, you'll need to plug the data into the column headers of the template you downloaded at the beginning of this email. 


    We also would like to take the time to point out that Customers and Vendors can only imported through our Import team and cannot be done through the import tool. For more information, you can always consult our Importing Inventory Data page on our Support Website for more details! 

    To submit your import request to our import team, we'd suggest you fill out the following request on our Support Website so that the request gets reassigned to the proper team. 

    To submit your request, you'll go to

    Click the Retail product

    On the top right of the page there will be a red Submit a Request button. Click this. 

    When you scroll down, you'll get a box that you can select. Selecting this, you'll chose the option IMPORT > CUSTOMERS/INVENTORY/VENDORS 

    Finally, you'll input the information the form requires. 

    An agent will be assigned to your import request and will process it as quickly as they can!


    If you have any further questions Please do not hesitate to contact LightSpeed support or check out our Support Page.

    All the best!


    Lightspeed Retail Support

    866-932-1801 ext. 2 (Toll-Free)

    514-907-1801 ext. 2 (Montreal)

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