Now is your last chance to buy a lifetime license before we switch to annual pricing. Existing licenses will be unaffected.
read more
Posted on November 17, 2023

The 5 Best Plugins for WordPress User Import from CSV

hello world!

In our article The 5 Best WordPress User Import Plugins, we ranked plugins based on their general features.

In this article, we may summarize some of those features, but our focus will be on how the plugins handle CSV imports specifically.

All of the plugins on this list can import WordPress users from a CSV file, so what is there to discuss? If the incoming users contain data elements that:

  • Line up perfectly with WordPress user fields;
  • Contain only individual values, with each data element separated by a comma or other separator character (e.g., Value 1, Value 2, Value 3);
  • The format of the data in each data element exactly matches the format requirements of its target field;

...then there is nothing to discuss, at least with respect to the CSV format.

But that's not what happens in the real world. Depending on who generated the user import file, you may encounter data elements that:

  • Should be split into separate fields (.e.g., a user name that needs to be split into the first and last names);
  • Contain multiple values by design, with each value separated by a secondary divider (e.g., Value 1, Value 2a | Value 2b, Value 3), and you may or may not want to import the data this way (note, this doesn't apply to any of the core WordPress user fields, but it certainly may apply to custom user fields);
  • Contain even more complex substructures, such as JSON objects;
  • Need to be reformatted on the fly, such as date values;

It's the ability (or inability) to handle these more challenging CSV issues that dictates how we rank the user import plugins on this list.

1. WP All Import

WordPress User Import CSV - WP All Import

WP All Import is our top choice for importing users from CSV because it can transform the user data on the fly in any way you wish.

For example, say you want to create one unified address field to generate mailing labels. You can do this simply by a) dragging the desired data elements into the target fields and b) injecting whatever literal values you want:

WordPress User Import CSV - Combination Fields

You can also use PHP functions in fields. For example, this function deletes any instances of commas inside an incoming data element:

WordPress User Import CSV - Simple Field Formulas

Or you can use WP All Import's embedded function feature to make even more sophisticated changes. In this example, a function is used to round a dollar amount:

WordPress User Import CSV -  Embedded Functions

This function can then be used during the population of any WordPress user field much the same way that a built-in PHP function is.

This means that WP All Import lets you transform the content of any import file into the exact field layout and field formats that your WordPress user fields require — no exceptions.

When this unlimited capacity for data manipulation is added to all of WP All Import's other import features, including:

  • Advanced data filters;
  • Selective updates (i.e., only update the fields you want);
  • Import scheduling;
  • Multilingual imports;
  • Complete coverage of all WordPress and WooCommerce data types;
  • and more (see Import Users From CSV, Excel, and XML for a complete list of features);

...this is why we rank this as our #1 plugin on this list.

2. Export and Import Users and Customers by Webtoffee

WordPress User Import CSV -  Webtoffee

When it comes to importing WordPress users from CSV files, Webtoffee's Export and Import Users and Customers plugin is a bit like a light version of WP All Import.

It allows you to merge incoming user fields:

WordPress User Import CSV - Webtoffee Merge Fields

It also allows you to use a limited set of operators against numeric fields:

WordPress User Import CSV - Webtoffee Evaluate Fields

However, it doesn't give you the ability to use PHP functions inline, and it doesn't provide any kind of embedded function editor to allow more sophisticated manipulation of incoming user data.

Add this to the plugin's more general limitations, including:

  • no import filter capabilities;
  • its all or nothing approach to updating user fields (i.e., you can't selectively update specific fields);
  • only partial import/export coverage of WordPress data types;

...and you can see why we've ranked this plugin #2.

For additional information, see Export and Import Users and Customers.

3. Woo Import Export by Vjinfotech

WordPress User Import CSV - Woo Import Export

This plugin actually has slightly more ability to manipulate CSV data than Webtoffee's plugin. For example, it will let you selectively update user fields during an import. It also provides a good import filter.

However, incomplete documentation and a few quality concerns (both in terms of user reviews and our own experience trying to launch the plugin's demo) hold it back.

Also, like Webtoffee's plugin, it lacks an embedded function feature to truly let you manipulate incoming user data.

These factors explain why we've kept this plugin in third place.

For more information, see Woo Import Export.

4. Import and Export Users and Customers by Codection

WordPress User Import CSV - Codection

In the context of this article, where we're trying to assess plugins on their ability to handle complications in a user import file, this plugin doesn't fare well. Its basic premise is that it's up to you to make sure the user import file:

  • has the exact records you need;
  • has the exact layout that you need;
  • each incoming data element is already formatted correctly for the corresponding WordPress user target field;

This doesn't exactly meet our definition of import flexibility.

Don't get us wrong. If you control the exact layout, format, and content of your user import file, this plugin will do as good a job as any of the other plugins on this list. But throw it a curve ball, and you'll be shopping for a new plugin.

To learn more, see Import and Export Users and Customers.

5. Import Users from CSV by Andrew Lima

WordPress User Import CSV - Import Users from CSV

Everything we've said about the preceding plugin applies to this plugin except that it is even more rigid in its import file requirements, and it has even fewer options to control what does or doesn't get updated when a user in the import file already exists in your WordPress user data.

For all practical purposes, this plugin can only be used when importing core WordPress user fields using data that was either output from existing WordPress users or manually created/edited to mimic this.

To learn more, see Import Users from CSV.

WordPress User Import from CSV — Wrap-Up

In this article, we took the same five plugins from our The 5 Best WordPress User Import Plugins list and examined them through the lens of the specific requirements of importing WordPress users from a CSV file.

In doing this, we paid special attention to more challenging user import scenarios, such as when the import file:

  • has more user records than you want to import (i.e., when you are only interested in a subset of the incoming user records);
  • has a column layout that doesn't exactly match the fields used by WordPress users;
  • has incoming elements that use different data formats than the ones expected by WordPress;

WP All Import is the only plugin on this list that will handle all of these situations with ease and has, in fact, been designed specifically to do so.

Export and Import Users and Customers by Webtoffee and Woo Import Export by Vjinfotech will let you handle some of these scenarios but not the more complex ones. They also have broader shortcomings compared to WP All Import.

The final two plugins on this list — Import and Export Users and Customers by Codection and Import and Export Users and Customers by Codection — won't help you handle variations in incoming data whatsoever. They are only suitable for importing data that has been perfectly formatted in advance.

As usual, we hope this article helps you decide which plugin is the best for you.

Related Info

The 5 Best WordPress User Import Plugins

The 5 Best WordPress Plugins to Import Users from Excel

The 5 Best WordPress CSV Import Plugins To Speed Up Your Workflow in 2024

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Get Oxygen Today

Lifetime, unlimited site license

Copyright © 2024 Soflyy
linkedin facebook pinterest youtube rss twitter instagram facebook-blank rss-blank linkedin-blank pinterest youtube twitter instagram