Troubleshooting Shopify Syncing Issues
This article will cover proper procedure for troubleshooting syncing problems with Shopify. These steps will provide the fastest possible resolution and will all reduce the possibility of lost information (we know that no one wants to do extra work when they don't have to).
As a note, Shopify is constantly being updated with new features and bug fixes. When Shopify is updated they do not notify us of any changes in advance (or at all). When we are made aware of these updates we work to resolve them as quickly as possible, but it’s possible that older builds of the software will have syncing problems because of this.
Preliminary Questions and Considerations
What's not syncing?
This is important to identify because things may not be setup the correct way. If the issue is with syncing inventory amounts please see this section. If the issue is with syncing descriptions please see this section.
Do you use collections in Shopify?
We ask this question because if you need to force sync or unlink and resync your Shopify page will lose all collection information. This may be necessary, but we want to avoid this if possible.
Do you use any Shopify apps?
Like our AccountEdge connector, there are lots of different apps that people can use on their Shopify site. Apps can theme information, write to other databases, or populate information in a certain way. Just like collections, if we do a force sync, this information may be changed and it's possible that this will cause extra work. Again, it may be necessary, but if possible we want to avoid Force Syncing.
Do you have any orders in Shopify that aren't in AccountEdge?
Once you’ve linked AccountEdge and Shopify you can use the Process Web Orders feature inside of AccountEdge to pull in Shopify sales. AccountEdge will only pull sales in from the time you link the store. Meaning that if you unlink and relink and have outstanding orders in Shopify those will have to be manually entered. Also, as soon as you press the Process Web Orders button, any orders in Shopify are marked as synced. This means that if there is a problem bringing them in on the first sync they would normally have to be manually entered. This leads us to the next two steps.
NOTE: Whenever you are troubleshooting syncing issues between AccountEdge and Shopify you should always begin with these two steps. This will ensure that if something gets really messed up your work is still saved somewhere.
Initial Troubleshooting Steps
Step One: Exporting Products from Shopify
- Login to your Shopify store as the admin
- Click on the Products tab along the left hand side of the
- Click on Export in the upper right
- Select to export All Products and export as a CSV
- Click Export Products
This will send an email to the Shopify Administrator with an attached CSV that contains all product information from Shopify.
Step Two: Backing Up AccountEdge
- Login to your AccountEdge Data File
- Go to File > Backup from the menu bar at the top of the
- Choose to backup Company File Only, Don’t Check for
Errors, Save to Disk
- Give the backup a name that indicates what this is (ie: backup before Shopify sync)
Once these preliminary steps are taken we can focus on how to resolve the syncing issue.
There are four syncing options in AccountEdge. All of these can be found under Setup > Web Store from the menu bar at the top of the screen. Once you've navigated to there you can click on the sync options tab. In addition there is a final option of Unlinking and Relinking Shopify with AccountEdge. While troubleshooting syncing problems we want to start at the top (Sync) and work our way down to Unlinking and Relinking.
When you "Sync" AccountEdge with Shopify any items that have been updated on either end will be updated on the other (ie: if I edit a item number in AccountEdge and then sync with Shopify this item will be updated in shopify and vice-versa). Only items that have changes will be updated.
When you "Sync All" in AccountEdge with Shopify we will sync all items regardless of if they have been updated. This will NOT delete items from Shopify – it will only update information.
When you "Sync Images" in AccountEdge with Shopify, any images that are attached to AccountEdge items will be sent up to the corresponding images in Shopify. Also, if you remove any images from items in AccountEdge they will also be removed from Shopify. This is a one way update - adding an image to an item in Shopify and then doing a "Sync Image" will remove that image if there is none in AccountEdge. AccountEdge is always the side doing the update with this option.
When you "Force Sync" AccountEdge with Shopify, all items are deleted from Shopify and then added back from AccountEdge. This means that if you choose to not share descriptions between AccountEdge and Shopify, the items in Shopify will have no description. It also means that this can take a very long time as the sync works it's way through all of your items.
Unlinking and Relinking AccountEdge and Shopify
Like Force Syncing, when you unlink AccountEdge and Shopify you are performing an action that can take a very long time to finish. When you unlink and relink it actually causes you to do a Force Sync as it’s as though AccountEdge was never synced with Shopify. Unlinking and relinking also means that you will lose any unsynced Shopify orders that occur before relinking.
This is a last resort option, but it can clear up syncing problems that nothing else can. It’s like you’re starting over.
If you are going to unlink and relink – the steps you want to take are as follows:
- Perform both backups (export from Shopify and Backup in
- Login to your AccountEdge file and choose Setup > Webstore
from the drop down menu
- Click “Unlink Web Store”
- Login to your Shopify account as the Administrator.
- Click the Products tab on the left hand side
- Select the top check box to select all items
- Click the Bulk Actions drop down menu
- Select to delete ALL 50+ Products (assuming that you have more then 1 page of items)
After this you can attempt to relink AccountEdge and do your initial sync.
Common Sync Issues
Image syncing issues can be tricky. There are a few different areas to look at.
Type of Image: Shopify Only accepts .png, .gif, or .jpg images. If the image is in a different format we will not be able to sync it up to Shopify.
Size of Image: The larger the image, the more time consuming syncing is going to be. This can also cause timeout issues and just prevent syncing in general. Shopify maximum image size is 2048x2048 and the size limit is 10 MBs or less. If you are having trouble with this – smaller tends to be better.
Images can be uploaded directly to Shopify and not put into AccountEdge and synced up; however, you cannot use the "Sync Image" option if you do this. Also, the picture will not be in AccountEdge at all.
If items had images at one time and these items were removed this may require unlinking and relinking. Troubleshooting steps should be as follows (start with Option 1 and work your way down to Option 5 if the previous step didn't work):
- Add the image to the item in AccountEdge and perform a standard
- Add the image to the item in AccountEdge and perform a "Sync
- Add the image directly to Shopify
- Force Sync AccountEdge and Shopify
- Unlink and Relink AccountEdge and Shopify
There are several possible causes for products that are duplicated in either AccountEdge or Shopify (or both). When syncing AccountEdge and Shopify it’s important to remember that the item is being identified not by name or item number, but by an internal record ID. If you have products in both AccountEdge and Shopify to begin with you are going to end up with multiple products. You need to select which one you want to use and either inactivate or delete the other.
If you are ending up with items that are the same item number and just have numbers appended on to the end (ie: Product, Product1, Product2) but you should only have the item called “Product” you want to make sure that you are on the latest AccountEdge update.
Shopify updates their software often and we are not notified of these updates. This means that if they change something involving the items internal record information we can have syncing problems. When we are made aware of these updates we work to resolve them as quickly as possible, but it’s possible that older builds of the software will have syncing problems because of this.
Troubleshooting steps should be as follows (start with Option 1 and work your way down to Option 4 if the previous step didn't work):
- Make sure AccountEdge is entirely up to date
- Make sure that any duplicate items in both AccountEdge and
Shopify are deleted or that you go into the Selling Details of the
item and uncheck “I sell this item in my web
- Attempt to Force Sync
- Attempt to Unlink and Relink
If none of these options resolves the issue it’s possible that Shopify has released an update and we need to try to replicate this behavior. If this occurs please contact us.
Web Order Syncing
Once you’ve linked AccountEdge and Shopify you can use the “Process Web Orders” button to bring orders from Shopify into AccountEdge. Only orders that are created AFTER the two are linked will be able to be synced into AccountEdge. Any orders before this point are going to need to be manually entered into AccountEdge.
If you have had orders that successfully synced from Shopify to AccountEdge but are missing certain orders you will want to look at the Shopify Log to find out what happened.
You can find this by going to Setup > Web Store and clicking on “View Shopify Logs” from the Store Details tab.
If you charge freight on orders in Shopify you need to have the linked Accounts Setup in AccountEdge BEFORE syncing. You can do this by going to Setup > Linked Accounts > Sales Accounts and check the box for “I Charge freight on sales.” You can then choose which account to allocate this to.
If you have some orders that came in but not all orders you want to view the Shopify log. This will have more information regarding what happened. If you have orders from after this (ie: I have orders 1, 2, 3, and missing orders 4 and 5, but then have order 6), this is a problem specific with those orders. The problem with this is, once you have processed orders in AccountEdge these orders are marked as synced and cannot be synced again.
If you make an AccountEdge backup before syncing and you are missing orders you can restore that backup and attempt to sync again. You would want to make sure you resolved the problem before attempting to sync again.
If you have an ongoing issue with this it’s a good idea to ask them to make a backup right before processing orders each time and then restore that backup immediately if not everything comes in. If this occurs (especially if you are able to restore the backup from immediately before syncing) please contact us.
Inventory Quantity Syncing
There are some differences between how different versions of AccountEdge handle syncing inventory with Shopify. AccountEdge 2014 did not have the ability to update inventory quantity in Shopify. AccountEdge 2015 can update inventory, but requires proper setup.
Most inventory syncing problems are because of incorrectly set up items. If you look at an item’s information in AccountEdge you have the ability to set several options. These options will be found on the “Locations” tab of the item. You can find these options by:
- Go to Inventory > Items Lists
- Click on the arrow (double arrow) next to your item
- Click on the Locations tab across the top of the item
AccountEdge Reserved Quantity: Indicates the number of items you want to keep for sale in the AccountEdge database. If set to 0 this mean there is no reserved quantity. If set with a number it means this number will be held back for sale in AccountEdge and not made available in Shopify. If I have 40 of an item and set up an AccountEdge Reserved Quantity of 30, it will only show that 10 are available in Shopify.
Target: This indicates the number of items that you want to sync up to Shopify given the availability of the item. If I set my Target quantity at 10 and I have 100 of the item, only 10 will be made available in Shopify. If I set my Target quantity at 999, 999, 999 and I have 100 of the item, 100 will be made available in Shopify. If a you want all of your items to go up to Shopify this should be set to a very large number – it will only be able to sync up how many you actually have.
Item Description Issues
Beginning with AccountEdge 2015, there is a setting in the Shopify setup that allows descriptions to be synced (or not synced). Previous to this AccountEdge always synced item descriptions and there was no choice.
The reason we added this preference is that many users like to add HTML coding to their item descriptions in Shopify - but the item description field in AccountEdge is much smaller then the one in Shopify. This meant that in AccountEdge 2014 you would end up having your Shopify description truncated down to 500 characters (as AccountEdge always takes precedence).
If your descriptions are smaller or you want them to sync from AccountEdge up to Shopify you can adjust how this works by:
- Go to Setup > Web Store
- Click on the Selling Details tab
- Check the box next to "Sync product descriptions between AccountEdge and Shopify" if you want this information to sync back and forth. If you don't want it to - make sure that this box is unchecked.
Different Item on Shopify Order
When viewing the same order on Shopify and in AccountEdge - if you see that there is a different item or set of items in Shopify than in AccountEdge - it's possible that there was an issue with how you set the items up initially.
If you created the item in Shopify and you used the "Duplicate Item" feature (this is a way to create multiple products quickly) - when you attempt to sync any of the web orders that had items which were duplicated in Shopify you will end up with the ORIGINAL item on the web order.
This can only be resolved by removing these items entirely from Shopify and then set them up individually in either AccountEdge or Shopify (if they are already in AccountEdge you can sync these up to Shopify).