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Importing Contact Data Into Tern
Importing Your Contacts with the Core Import
Importing Your Contacts with the Core Import

Go through the process of importing your contacts using the core import tool after you've cleaned up the file and added an import ID

David Shull avatar
Written by David Shull
Updated over a week ago

Welcome to the Tern Help Center! If you're looking to import your core contact file into Tern, you're in the right place. This step-by-step guide will take you through the process to ensure a smooth and successful import of your contacts.

Step 1: Accessing the Import Feature

  1. Navigate to Contacts: In the Tern interface, click on 'Contacts' in the top toolbar.

  2. Select Import Option: Find and click on the 'Import Contact' option.

Step 2: Initiating the Import Process

  1. Continue Importing Contacts: Click on 'Continue Importing Contacts'. The interface may vary over time, but the option to import the core or main file should be visible.

  2. Upload Your File: You can either drag and drop the file from your desktop or click to explore and select your file.

Step 3: Confirming the Header Row

The first thing Tern needs to know is if your file had a first row that describes the data. This is also called a header row. A header row labels each column, like 'First Name', 'Middle Name', etc. Most files will have a header row and you can continue on. If your file does not make sure to note that.

Step 4: Mapping the Columns

  1. Automatic Mapping: Tern attempts to automatically map columns. However, you should manually review each mapping for accuracy.

  2. Preview Data: Click on the columns to preview data and ensure correct mapping.

  3. Correcting Mismatches: If a column is incorrectly mapped (e.g., 'Import ID' in the 'Prefix' column), correct it by selecting the appropriate field.

  4. Addressing Unmatched Columns: Leave unmatched columns if they're not relevant for the core file. These can be imported later if needed.

Step 5: Matching Additional Details

  1. Special Fields: Pay attention to fields like 'Global Entry', which should be mapped to 'Known Traveler Number' or 'Passenger ID Number'.

  2. Ignoring Irrelevant Fields: Fields not used in Tern (e.g., certain passport details) can be ignored.

Step 6: Finalizing the Import

  1. Confirm and Continue: After ensuring all mappings are correct, confirm and continue.

  2. Cleanup Process: Tern will guide you through any necessary cleanups. Address any mismatches or errors.

  3. Editing and Deleting Rows: Use this step to edit, delete, or add rows as needed. You can also export the cleaned-up file from here.

Step 7: Completing the Import

  1. Finish and Review Errors: Click on 'Finish' to complete the import. Review and fix any errors displayed on this page.

  2. No Errors Confirmation: Ensure that the final status shows 'No Errors'.

  3. Import Completion: Once you click 'Finish', Tern will import your contacts. The time taken depends on the size of your file.

Tips for a Successful Import

  • Check Column Mappings: Carefully review each column mapping to prevent data mismatches.

  • Handle Unmatched Columns Appropriately: Only match columns relevant to the core file. Future updates can address additional data.

  • Clean and Verify Data: Utilize the cleanup process to ensure data accuracy and completeness.


Importing your contact file into Tern is a crucial step in managing your customer relationships effectively. By following these detailed steps, you can ensure a smooth and error-free import process. If you encounter any issues or have further questions, don't hesitate to reach out to Tern's support team for assistance.

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