Upload a CSV of Contacts to Apollo

Article author
Eric Zrinsky
  • Updated


If you don't have a CRM or if you have a list of people that you want to use in Apollo that are not yet in your CRM, you can import that list as a CSV into Apollo.

When you import CSV lists of people into Apollo, there are a few columns that are required:

  • First Name
  • Last Name
  • Company
  • Company Website

Apollo highly recommends that you also include the contact email if you have it as well.

With the data from these columns, Apollo can match the contact in the Apollo database and enrich the rest of the contact and account information.

LinkedIn Data Only

Please note, if you only have the URL to a Contact's LinkedIn profile, Apollo recommends that you do not import this data from a CSV. Instead, you can use the Apollo Chrome Extension to save the contact directly from their LinkedIn profile. For more information, please refer to the "Apollo Chrome Extension Overview" article.

Special CSV Column Circumstances

If your CSV file includes values that should be mapped to a checkbox in Apollo, enter True for checked and False for unchecked.

If your CSV file includes a column that features a Multi-Picklist field, each value in the cell needs to be separated by a semicolon.

Special CSV Column Circumstances

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Upload a CSV of Contacts

Launch Apollo and click Search.


Verify that you are currently on the People tab and then click the Import drop-down.


From the drop-down, click Bulk Import from CSV.

Bulk Import

Click Select CSV File.

Select CSV File

Select your CSV file from your computer and then click Open to upload it.

Select CSV File

Use the drop-down menus for each of the fields to map your CSV column headers to the corresponding Apollo fields.


In the What stage would you like to set the contacts to? drop-down, select the contact stage that best represents the engagement status for all of the contacts in the CSV.


Why does "Contact Stage" matter?

It is very important to set your list to the correct stage because it allows you to efficiently message people once they're included in an Apollo sequence.

Select the desired behavior from the If contacts already exist in Apollo drop-down.

Existing Behavior

What criteria does Apollo use to match people already in Apollo to people in a CSV file?

When you update an existing record in Apollo via CSV, Apollo uses 3 sets of unique identifiers in order of most to least unique. Those identifiers include:

  • linkedin_URL
  • first_name + last_name + organization
  • email address

This means, if you include linkedin_URL, you can update all of the other data for a person. If you include first_name + last_name + organization, but you do not include a different linkedin_URL, you can update email address and other data. If you include only email_address and you do not include the linkedin_URL or first_name + last_name + organization, then you can only update other fields for the people in your file.

If you opt to update existing records in Apollo from your CSV, Apollo only updates records that have a matching email address, a matching name (first and last), and a matching company. You can also opt to skip updating duplicate records.

When duplicate people exist in your CSV, Apollo only accepts the highest row in the file to update the record in the platform.

Select a user from the If the owner value is missing in your CSV, assign owner to drop-down that should own the imported records in Apollo.

Set Record Owner

Select the behavior in the If existing contacts already have owner drop-down to control what Apollo does if it encounters records in your CSV that already have an owner in Apollo.

Existing Owner

What happens if I update ownership?

If you select the "Update Ownership" behavior from the drop-down, Apollo will assign the user that you selected in the If the owner value is missing in your CSV, assign owner to drop-down.

Select an option from the Auto-assign accounts? drop-down to determine whether or not Apollo should assign companies to the people included in your CSV.


Accounts With Salesforce Integrated

If you have integrated Salesforce for your account, you will see an additional checkbox to determine whether or not Apollo should create and update records in Salesforce based on the uploaded CSV.

Accounts With Salesforce Integrated

In the Add to a List? drop-down, enter the name of a new list or select one from the drop-down to add the contacts from your CSV to a list in Apollo. This step is optional.

Add To List

Click Import to finish uploading your CSV to Apollo.


Your upload will now begin.

How long will the upload take?

Most uploads only take a few minutes to complete, but depending on the size of your CSV and the time of day, it may take a few hours for your upload to finish. Apollo does not recommend uploading a file that includes more than 10k rows. Instead, you should split your CSV into two smaller files. You can check on the status of your upload by browsing to Settings—> Imports & Exports —> Contact Imports.

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Search For Imported People

Launch Apollo and click Search.


Click Show More Filters.

Show More Filters

Scroll to the bottom of the page and click Contact CSV Import.

Contact CSV Import

Click the checkbox next to the CSV file(s) that you want to include.

CSV Files

Click Apply Filters to display the people included in the selected CSV files.

Apply Filters

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