4 Replies Latest reply on Mar 27, 2013 4:38 AM by Kasyan Servetsky

    How to import Excel data?

    Janivo

      Hello,

      I am not a graphic designer however I hope you can give me an advice . Is there an easy way how to import a set of data stored in an Excel file (table) to a indd file? Properly speaking I need the text stored in an Excel table, for example in cell A2 import  to similarly defined place in the file. indd. I have attached file for better understanding.

       

      Next I need to know whether it is possible to find an algorithm for above described act - it means that Adobe InDesign "understands" that each row in Excel means a single product and single cells of the row means parameter of the product.

       

      Finally – if everything is somehow feasible - is it possible to import Excel data using existing graphical data designed for product catalogue or is it necessary to create a brand new file with pairing algorithm? Note: our graphic designer uses the latest version of Adobe InDesign CS6.

       

       

       

      excel.jpg

        • 1. Re: How to import Excel data?
          Peter Spier Most Valuable Participant (Moderator)

          You may be able to do what you want with Data Merge, but that depends on how many products are on the page, and if there is anything NOT included in the data file that is also there in a product.

           

          A more sophisticated option would be to use a commercial catalog plugin for ID.

          • 2. Re: How to import Excel data?
            Janivo Level 1

            Hi Peter, thank you. There are 3-4 products placed on every page and there is only a product image (graph) that is not inlcuded in the Excel data file.

             

            I´ve found some links explaining Data Merge and it looks fine. I have tried to find more info about catalog plugin for ID however with no decent result plesase could you also send me the link for more info about this feature?

             

            Maybe would you provide contact for somebody who is able to create the product catalogue in the way I want i.e. using Data Merge / catalog plugin ? 

            • 3. Re: How to import Excel data?
              Peter Spier Most Valuable Participant (Moderator)

              Janivo wrote:

               

              There are 3-4 products placed on every page and there is only a product image (graph) that is not inlcuded in the Excel data file.

              So that's a potential problem with Data Merge. Data Nerge is really good at things like address labels, but is not sophiticated enough to do variable sizes (a multiple record merge produces the same number of stories on every page, and the frames are all the same size as the tempalte frame -- they don't adjust for the size of the content.

               

              Images can be merged, so you could either add the link to the graph to the spreadsheet, or place each one manually after the merge, but I think you'll wind up probably doing one merged file, then moving products from that into a new file so you can adjust the sizing to fit each one and vary the number on a page. I do something similar to that for a directory I do that includes business descriptions that can run from three to 10 lines.

               

              I've never used any of the catalog plugins, so I can't help with that, but some of our other users do, so perhaps we'll hear more suggestions from them.

               

              I also know that Dave Saunders (http://forums.adobe.com/people/Dave%20Saunders?view=profile) did a lot of work several years ago automating catalog creation using scripting for a private client.

              • 4. Re: How to import Excel data?
                Kasyan Servetsky Level 5

                Another approach is to use xml-workflow which is described in great detail in Designer's Guide to Adobe InDesign and XML by James Maivald and his course on Lynda.com. You can export your data from Excel to xml-file and import it into InDesign. (A brief description is here; more info in the abovementioned book). The xml-workflow and using a plug-in (e.g. InCatalog) works well if you data have strictly repeating structure: all the products contain the same set of elements – name, number, price, etc. If the structure is flexible – some elements may be present or not – it’s better to use scripting instead.

                 

                Regards,

                Kasyan