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How do I fix contact upload errors?

When you want to add or update a significant number of contacts, your best option is to do a bulk upload. This feature is pretty straightforward to use and doesn’t take longer than a couple of minutes, but sometimes the system is unable to add some of the uploaded contacts to your account. 

When this happens, you will get an error notification where you can download a list of the contacts that the system could not create.  The file will contain a description of the errors for each invalid contact.


Those errors will show up in the first column, for example:

example of error message

Most common bulk upload errors and how to fix them:


Error message What does the error mean? How to fix the error?
Please correct or remove the ID. Our system creates a unique contact ID for each contact you upload. If you have a column header called “ID” in the excel file you are trying to upload, the engageSPARK system will try to match it with the engageSPARK system-generated ID of an existing contact to update that contact. So, if there is no existing contact with that ID, then the system doesn’t allow the upload and gives you an error. Edit your excel file’s column header to contain a more specific description like “Participant ID”, “Patient ID”, or anything else other than just “ID”. This way, the engageSPARK system can differentiate between your program ID and the system-generated contact ID when you re-upload.
Please update the number and try again. This means that the engageSPARK system determined that there is something wrong with the number/s you are trying to upload. The number might be too long, too short, or invalid; the error will tell you which. Verify with your program participants their phone numbers so you can update your records and re-upload. Otherwise, you can remove them from your file and check in on them later to confirm their correct numbers.
No carrier found. This means that the carrier prefix (the first 3-5 digits of a phone number that determines which telco network it belongs to) of the number you are trying to upload might be new and therefore do not exist in the engageSPARK system yet. Reach out to our support team via our live chat to let us know about this so we can update our records. After we add the carrier prefix, you can then re-upload the phone numbers.
Duplicated phone number. These are numbers that appear more than once in your excel file or that these numbers already exist in your contact list in the engageSPARK platform. No need to re-upload these numbers. Unless you want them to be uploaded for a specific reason like multiple people share the same phone number or you want them to be added in a separate group in your contact list. You can reach out to our support team for guidance via live chat.
No headers as the first row. Your excel file does not contain any column headers and the data cannot be mapped appropriately. Edit your excel file and add column headers like Groups, Phone Numbers, First Name, Last Name, Age, Gender, etc. – whichever column names are appropriate for the data you are trying to upload. Then, re-upload.
International / national numbers mix up. Your file contains a mix of international and national phone number formats. If you are uploading phone numbers from multiple countries, make sure that the phone numbers in your excel file are in international format (phone numbers with country code). When you re-upload, select the radio button for “Multiple countries” instead of “Single country”. For single country phone number uploads, there is no need to add the country code, Just select the country name in the dropdown option in step 2 when uploading.
No phone number column Your excel file doesn’t contain a column header for phone numbers. Edit your excel file and add a column header for like “Number”, or “Phone number” above the phone number list.
Phone number error
CSV with phone number longer than 11 digits opened and saved in Excel

When a .xlsx file is converted to .csv file, and the phone number is longer than 11 digits. Excel truncates the number to something that looks like `1.11E+10`. Make sure to correct the number to its correct length. Follow the steps to format the number column.
Select and right-click the phone column.

  • Click “Format Cells”
  • Click “Custom”
  • Under “General,” click 0
  • Click Ok and Save

When the numbers are correct, upload the CSV. An error alert will appear at the top of the window if there are invalid numbers in the file. Download the invalid number file. The first column will contain the errors, with the error message clearly stated in each cell. Correct the mistakes and upload the contacts again.


Have questions or need a little extra help?