Salesforce Data Loader

any companies use Salesforce CRM in their business to perform different functions. Some functions include keeping customers' details, checking insights, creating and managing marketing campaigns, and checking stocks. The functions generate a lot of data you must use to ensure you increase your profits. Salesforce CRM makes it easy for its clients to export or import the data for analysis, making it useful. They use Salesforce data loader, making the whole process fast and easy. It handles operations like editing, updating, deleting, etc., which is very useful when dealing with data. The loaders currently support CSV files only.

What Is a Data Loader

Data Loader is a type of software that automates the processes of exporting, importing, and storing Salesforce data. It helps different professionals to do various tasks while dealing with the data. Most of the data is actionable, and it mainly comes from CRM. 

It eliminates the manual entry, which makes it hard to get good results compared to using data loaders. It helps businesses make the data more useful like personalizing ad campaigns, ensuring a return on investments, etc.

What Is a Salesforce Data Loader

It is an application that enables clients to export or import any data. Salesforce users can use it to delete, insert, update or export any records. When you need to import the data, the loader first reads the data, extracts and loads it from comma-separated values or a database. Most of the data exported usually is CSV.

The Salesforce data loader works two ways. It requires the user to specify the files' mapping, configurations, data sources, and actions.

The second method uses a User interface where you input the configuration parameters and the CSV files you will use to export and import. They also define the mappings that map all the field names to your imported file to the field names that exist in Salesforce CRM.

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How To Install a Salesforce Data Loader

There are several ways of installing a data loader according to the operating system type.

If you are using the Windows Operating system, you can follow the following steps:

  • Download and install the latest Java Runtime Environment (JRE) version like  Zulu OpenJDK.
  • Download the loader installation file.
  • Right-click on the zipped file and choose the Extract all option.
  • Under the data loader folder, double-click on the install.bat file and run the file.
  • Choose the location you can install the data loader or overwrite if you have an existing installation.
  • You can select the option where you can have the data loader icon on your desktop.

If you are using MacOs operating system, you can follow the procedures below to finish the data loader installation:

  • Download and install the latest Java Runtime Environment (JRE) version like Zulu OpenJDK.
  • Get the data loader installation file.
  • Right-click on the zipped file and click the Extract All option.
  • Locate the Data loader folder, and choose installer.command. If you face issues selecting the file, press the Control key and click installer.command installer.command file simultaneously. Choose Open from the menu.
  • Choose the location where to install the data loader.
  • Select the option where you can add the Data loader icon to the desktop if you want or not. Follow the prompts and complete the application. When the user wants to use the loader, you can click on the desktop icon or other options like opening the application folder or using commands.

If your Mac has an M1 hardware chip. You may receive errors from the Eclipse SWT library, which tells you it doesn’t support the library. You will have to run it in Intel emulation mode with the help of Rosetta 2. There are several ways you can enable the mode. After enabling the emulation mode, the following steps below describe how to run the data loader on your PC.

  • Open your PC terminal and type /usr/sbin/softwareupdate --install-rosetta command.
  • You must have the latest Java Runtime Environment (JRE) version and ensure it supports your Mac architecture.
  • Type and run the installer.command file from the loader folder.

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When to Use The Salesforce Data Loader

Salesforce data loader uses import wizards to determine which methods are suited for particular needs. Some of the situations you need to use the Salesforce data loader include:

  • When customers want to export the data as backups for future use.
  • The users must load it into objects that do not support import wizards.
  • The data you load should consist of 5,000,000 records. It only supports 5,000,000 records; if you load more, you must use other Salesforce partners or the App Exchange.
  • If users want to schedule their regular data loads, that happens, i.e., the nightly or weekly imports.
  • The data should have complex field mappings that you must load consistently and regularly.

Key Features Of a Data Loader

Some of the key features of salesforce data include:

  • It supports Windows and Mac.
  • It supports large files.
  • It works with data from databases and Salesforce.
  • It provides log files for CSV files.
  • It has a drag and drops feature for mapping.
  • It has a CSV file viewer.
  • It supports all objects.

Functions Performed On Salesforce Data Loaders

Some of the functionalities performed by Salesforce data loaders include the following:

  • The delete function - It removes the records and moves them to the recycle bin.
  • The update function - It usually edits the existing records.
  • Insert function - it normally creates a new record.
  • The hard delete function - it deletes all the records permanently without moving them to the recycle bin.
  • Export function - It exports all the records leaving out the recycle bin data records.
  • Upsert - the function enables users to insert and update records at the same time. For example, if the file matches the records, the values get updated with the new values from the files, when there is no matching value, a new record gets created.
  • Export all functions - It exports all the records, including the data found in the recycle bin.

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Advantages Of Salesforce Data Loaders

The benefits of using a data loader include:

  • It ensures data integrity between the data source and the destination when moving data. It ensures the data transfer is reliable.
  • It provides the ability to schedule data movement. Users can come up with a period when they want the data migration to occur.
  • It supports testing and development with the help of sandboxes.
  • It saves the time one would take to transfer data. When someone wants to transfer large data, they use less time due to the automatic transfer of data.
  • It works well with large data sets. Transferring data using a data loader handles large data of up to  5,000,000 records.
  • When users use data loaders to move data, it streamlines some processes like data migration to meet all the needs and specifications.

Disadvantages Of Salesforce Data Loaders

Disadvantages of using data loaders include:

  • It is sometimes complicated to implement it for first-time users.
  • It is difficult to work with some objects.
  • When migrating records, there are several steps one has to follow.
  • It only works with CSV formats making it hard to work with other formats.

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Data loaders are very useful when exporting and importing data. Many people had issues when it came to exporting and importing big data. The loaders have made it easy, fast, and easy to do the same processes. The article has given you a deeper understanding of how Salesforce data loaders function. For some of the companies and businesses that handle large data, this application is a great tool to use.

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Ishan Gaba
Ishan Gaba
Research Analyst
Ishan is an IT graduate who has always been passionate about writing and storytelling. He is a tech-savvy and literary fanatic since his college days. Proficient in Data Science, Cloud Computing, and DevOps he is looking forward to spreading his words to the maximum audience to make them feel the adrenaline he feels when he pens down about the technological advancements. Apart from being tech-savvy and writing technical blogs, he is an entertainment writer, a blogger, and a traveler.

Yes, Salesforce has a data loader as a tool, but other companies also have data loaders you can use.

Yes, it is free for those users using salesforce editions.

You use a data loader when dealing with large data.

Yes, it enables you to export data that is usually CSV.

Data loader can export up to 5,000,000 records.