In the case of a list upload failure, you may receive an email from SendGrid. Please check the email from SendGrid containing the results of your CSV upload, including a downloadable error report.

General Formatting Rules

General rules and guidance to follow when formatting a CSV to upload into Marketing Campaigns.

Character Encoding

If your contacts list has non-English characters, please make sure that you’re using a CSV file that is UTF-8 encoded.

Not all addresses populate in UI

SendGrid will remove duplicate and invalid email addresses (including email addresses with special characters) from your list during upload, so the number of contacts can potentially change between your CSV and your Marketing Campaigns list.

Text that looks like a number

Make sure that you don’t have text fields that look like numbers. Text that look like numbers are those that contain punctuation characters like a dash, underscore, parenthesis, or multiple dots.

- US Zip Code: 80202-1713
- Phone numbers: “(555) 555-5555” or “555.555.5555”
- Monetary Values with the currency indicator such as $3.50 or €5.73

CSV Header

  • Header fields can be blank in your CSV, but must be named and have their type defined later during the upload process.

Date formatting

Properly format any dates in your CSV. If you created your CSV with Excel and it is not displaying properly, force the date format before exporting to CSV. Use one of the following date formats: MM/DD/YYYY, MM/D/YYYY, M/D/YYYY, or M/DD/YYYY

I have more than one of the same email in my database

With SendGrid’s Marketing Campaigns feature, the unique identifier is the email address. So, if you upload the same email address multiple times, the custom field data associated with that email will be updated with each upload to the most recently uploaded/updated information. This feature helps prevent you from accidentally emailing the user after they have unsubscribed.

What you may want to do is add logic to set a custom field, based on the reason why you have duplicate emails in your system (for example multiple product lines) and then segment your user to be in lists based on those custom fields.

Custom Fields

Specific Upload Errors

Listed below are a few distinct errors you may encounter when uploading a CSV to Marketing Campaigns, along with tips to correct the root issue.

We were unable to detect an email column in the CSV file headers. The email column must always have a header of “email”

  • If there is a header labeled “email”, try moving it to the column A, so it is the first header in your list.
  • Your CSV must include an email header.

Some of your custom fields have not been selected

  • Look for hidden characters in your CSV file if you have worked with the file multiple times and made some adjustments to the data.
  • A common fix for this error would be to select all and copy your data to a new CSV spreadsheet. This should remove any hidden characters.

Each custom field can only be applied to a column once. Please check your columns and try again

  • Check your CSV for duplicate fields, especially fields that have matching information as your “email”, “first_name” and “last_name” fields. These are reserved field names, and cannot be edited.
  • For example, if you have a “Name” field, it may conflict with your “first_name” reserved field.

We were unable to detect any headers in your CSV file

  • Include headers at the top of each column. The “email” header is required for all CSV uploads. Header fields can be blank in your CSV, but must be defined later during the upload process.

Float type conversion error

  • Categorize dashes or decimal places that are past the hundredth place as text_fields (-100, 123.123 are text fields, 100, 12.12 can be number fields). Number fields can include monetary values without the currency symbols. For example, 19.95 would be a number field, and $19.95 including the ($) would be a text field.
  • As you are uploading your CSV, make sure you select the correct fields for your Field type.