How can I merge a HUGE number of customers?

JasonRobertsJasonRoberts Member Posts: 14

We're migrating from Lightspeed Onsite to Lightspeed Retail. We've had some of our data imported already, but this has caused a problem that I wasn't expecting.

We had two stores, so when our customers were imported, we ended up with over 11,000 duplicates. I know how to merge customers, but is there any way to do this in bulk? Am I really going to have to do a manual merge over 11,000 times?

Best Answer

  • Tim_The_Grand_NagusTim_The_Grand_Nagus Member Posts: 8
    Accepted Answer

    @JasonRoberts

    I assume you have a CSV file or some kind of database file with your customer list?

    Based on my experience dealing with lists like this, the easiest way to do what you want would be the following:

    Create a new customer (doesn't matter, call it MERGE CUSTOMER), then using the merge function merge all your customers into the MERGE CUSTOMER that you just created. You can only do 100 at a time, but it's still faster than matching up your customers one at a time. Then re-import your list of customers using the import function.

    We use a similar process to get rid of old SKU's in our retail section (since items can't be deleted) and it seems to be the fastest way so far I've seen to do something like this.

Answers

  • gregaricangregarican Member Posts: 663 

    That does sound rough! I thought that Lightspeed had internal data import specialists that assist with conversions and migrations. When we went live with Retail back in 2018 we were told certain routines that would take awhile could be handled by Lightspeed staff. Who have access to internal tools that we don't. Maybe see if they could assist by contacting your sales account manager?

    One thing I do know. If there was a Retail API endpoint for merging customers, then the routine would take over 30 hours to complete for the outside client. And that's if there is such an endpoint, which I don't think there is...

  • JasonRobertsJasonRoberts Member Posts: 14
    edited March 24

    We're among those who are transitioning to Lightspeed Retail because of the end-of-life of Onsite. This is the result after using one of Lightspeed's data import specialists, Doosync. I cannot say enough about how frustrating this process with them has been.

    Tonight was supposed to be the eve of our go live date. Luckily we changed that last week, fearing they wouldn't be prepared—and our data is nowhere near complete. In addition to 11,500 customer email dupes, which I haven't even had the chance to address with them, one of our two stores has zero historical invoices migrated and none of our product images have been synced.

    I've helped migrate data between numerous systems, though mostly in the nonprofit sector, and have never had this much difficulty in dealing with the people being paid to help us. And the bizarre thing here is that we're moving from one Lightspeed system to another. Nearly all of my past experience has been moving from one company to another, and getting those systems ready was easier.

    The only plus: This wasn't my decision and I've gotten very good at saying "I told you so" with nothing more than the arch of an eyebrow.

  • JasonRobertsJasonRoberts Member Posts: 14

    Hi Tim,

    Thanks for the response. Hopefully you're on to something.

    Here's the challenge: We have two locations, so customers were imported from both. In some sets of duplicate emails, more than one customer record is going to have transactions. I'm not certain how transactions are "attached" to customer records, but I'm assuming it's not as simple as the email address, since those (obviously) can be duplicated.

    So if the all of the transactions have been imported (which, unfortunately, they have not been), what is it that connects the transaction record to the customer record? And can I change that as part of an import?

  • Tim_The_Grand_NagusTim_The_Grand_Nagus Member Posts: 8

    @JasonRoberts Hmm, I'm not sure I have the answer to that as I've never used OnSite and that may implement differently than on LS Retail.

    So based on what you have clarified, you want to import two lists of customers, merge them, and maintain order history for those customers?

    What I might do is do a test import of a transaction with a customer from your old system and see what it does, but remove that customer from your customer list first. If when you import a transaction it creates that customer then you know that importing transactions will bring their respective customers with them. Then it might just be a matter of importing your transactions, provided it doesn't create a new customer for each transaction and instead links them if they have the same information. From what I can tell, customers seem to be matched by email address, so if they have two different emails then it creates a new account for them. For example, if a customer in retail already has an account, and they use a different email to set up their account on the eCom side, once their order is processed they have two different accounts on the retail side that need to be merged.

    Hopefully that helps?

  • Natalie_G888Natalie_G888 Member Posts: 28 ✭

    Were the historical records ever migrated in the end? I am running into the same issues! With duplicate customers and all the historical records missing. I have been using OnSite for 10 years and just went "live" on April 13 but as of today, I am still waiting for the records. We use customer history at least 10 times a day as customers come in saying "I'll have the same order as last time." We are having to use OnSite to pull up their history. I haven't heard anything back from DOOSYNC today in spite of my numerous emails asking if this was still in progress and Lightspeed basically tells me i need to communicate with DOOSYNC sicne they are the ones doing the migration. And while I understand it's 10 years worth of historical records for two locations, and this can take time, it would have been nice if they could have prepared me for that AND for the fact that the final sync did not update the prices for many products that had had a price increase since the first bulk migration they did in December. It was pretty upsetting to learn that I was basically selling products for significantly less because the sync was in fact NOT complete. But sure, you're all set to go live they told me.

    Needless to say, this has been a terrible experience. I hope to get a reply from you saying it was all sorted out!

  • JasonRobertsJasonRoberts Member Posts: 14

    Well, @Natalie_G888, you're further along than we are, although it sounds like not necessarily in a better position. DOOSYNC has missed two go-live dates for us and I see little or no progress on a daily basis. We have started having to nag both DOOSYNC and Lightspeed on a regular basis, with lots of promises, but few results. It is extremely frustrating as we're still using Lightspeed Onsite, which has lost some of its functionality because of its end-of-life, meaning the data is getting more out-of-sync between our stores on a daily basis.

    DOOSYNC has promised to assist us with the issue for which I originally started this thread, but I just get the feeling that they're either a very small company trying to appear much larger than they are or have somehow otherwise gotten themselves in over their heads.

  • Natalie_G888Natalie_G888 Member Posts: 28 ✭

    @JasonRoberts This is not very encouraging to hear, and your migration started before mine! Lightspeed tells me to reach out to DOOSYNC "since they are in charge of the migration." This is what I have heard over and over again. And DOOSYNC is not very fast as getting back to me and has not addressed my numerous attempts at getting an answer about the historical records. I was told my migration would be complete within 24-48 hours including my photos and customer historical records. I'm still waiting! It's very problematic not only because my customers want us to check their history as I mentioned in my previous comment, but we have loyalty programs with manufacturers (buy 12 get 1 free) where we must provide invoices in order to receive credit. Often these invoices go back 2 years.

    Using OnSite to access the records is the short term solution but I am growing increasingly frustrated by the lack of communication and transparency.

  • JasonRobertsJasonRoberts Member Posts: 14

    @Natalie_G888, I know this doesn't help in any way, but it actually makes me feel a little better knowing it's not just us having these issues. I may have been starting to take it personally. I'm having the exact same issue with Lightspeed referring us to DOOSYNC and then DOOSYNC simply not responding to inquiries or, when they do, taking a week or more. This is absolutely preposterous and I don't understand how or why Lightspeed has been permitting this to happen.

    At the beginning of April, I received a message from someone at DOOSYNC that I hadn't talked to before. (I don't think it's fair to start mentioning people by name, not knowing where the fault truly lies.) She was helpful and gave me hope that things were actually progressing. Then on the morning of April 8 I got a message saying she was on vacation from April 8 until April 18, but that her people would be in touch. I immediately replied that I was concerned since I felt we were finally making progress and I didn't want that to stop; didn't receive a response. Well, I've gotten one email since then and, as far as I can tell, no progress has been made.

    When we were told Onsite was being assassinated, I suggested it was time to look at options other than Lightspeed. We didn't because our owners didn't want to lose the history. Well, what history we now have is grossly inaccurate.

    I just want this to be done and to be done correctly.

  • Natalie_G888Natalie_G888 Member Posts: 28 ✭

    @JasonRoberts You want to know what I have been saying everyday since migrating? "Had I known it would be like this, I would have explored my options with another POS system!"

    The lack of communication is simply unacceptable. Lightspeed and (DOOSYNC to a lesser degree) should be ashamed of themselves. So many promises, "We have a dedicated team to help you with the migration. We will offer you all the support you need." Boy have they underdelivered . What will it take for someone to get back to their customers?

    Why is there no single point of contact? Why is up to the client to have to reach out to all the different departments? I would have thought my Senior Onboarding Coordinator would be my SPOC but apparently not. Instead, I am told to reach out to various departments to sort things out -eCom migration team, LightSpeed support or DOOSYNC. None of whom get back to me in a timely manner.

    Lightspeed needs to take a serious look at how they handle their client relationships. I have escalated my concerns and have a call with a Customer Success Manager. I'll be sure to let you know how it goes. And please do keep me posted on how things progress for you.

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