5 min read

How to Backup your Amazon Listing Data with Flat Files

Written by
Vanessa Hung
Published on
September 4, 2023

In the evolving world of e-commerce, data is the key to success. As an Amazon seller, your listing data - the product details, prices, images, reviews, and more - forms the backbone of your business. It's essential to maintain a backup of this data to safeguard your business against any unforeseen circumstances. A practical and efficient way to do this is by using flat files. This article will guide you through the importance, process of backing up, and restoring your Amazon listing data using flat files so that you are prepared for any situation.

Why Backup Your Amazon Listing Data?

The unexpected can happen in e-commerce, just like any business. Your listing data could be accidentally deleted, lost due to a technical glitch, or even accidentally deleted by a VA. These scenarios could potentially disrupt your operations or, worse, lead to significant financial loss.

Having a backup of your listing data ensures that you can recover quickly and continue business as usual. It also lets you analyze your data for trends, helping you make informed decisions to drive your business forward.

What is a Flat File?

A flat file is a database stored in a file that has no structure. It is dubbed a 'flat file' because it’s not linked with any other data. In Amazon Seller Central, flat files are used to manage inventory and product listings in bulk. These are CSV (Comma Separated Values) or TXT files that can be opened in any spreadsheet program like Excel or Google Sheets.

How to Backup Your Amazon Listing Data Using Flat Files

Here's a step-by-step guide to help you protect your Amazon listing data:

  1. Log into Amazon Seller Central: Navigate to your Amazon Seller Central account and log in.
  2. Go to the Inventory Tab: Once you're in your account, find the 'Inventory' tab at the top of the page and click on 'Inventory Reports.'
  3. Select Report Type: In the drop-down menu, select the type of report you want to generate. For backing up your listing data, select 'Active Listings Report.'
  4. Request Report: Click on the 'Request Report' button. Depending on the size of your inventory, it may take some time for Amazon to generate your report.
  5. Download and Save Your Report: Once the report is ready, click on the 'Download' button. Make sure to save your report in a secure location. It's a good practice to keep multiple copies in different places, like an external hard drive or cloud service, for extra safety.

Remember to perform this backup process regularly to maintain an up-to-date record of your listings.

How to Restore Your Amazon Listing Data from Flat Files

Restoring your Amazon listings from a flat file is also a straightforward process:

  1. Prepare Your Flat File: Open the backup flat file in a spreadsheet program. Make sure the data is correct and up-to-date. Save the changes.
  2. Log into Amazon Seller Central: Navigate to your Amazon Seller Central account and log in.
  3. Go to the Inventory Tab: Find the 'Inventory' tab at the top of the page and click on 'Add Products via Upload.'
  4. Upload Your File: Click on 'Upload your Inventory File' and select the edited flat file. Then, click 'Upload.'
  5. Check the Processing Report: Amazon will process your file. Once done, check the processing report for any errors. If there are no errors, your listings will be updated with the data from the flat file.


Backing up and restoring your Amazon listing data using flat files is an essential practice that can protect your business from unforeseen data loss. By following the steps detailed above, you can ensure that you're prepared for any situation, allowing you to concentrate on what you do best – selling and growing your business. Don't wait until it's too late, start backing up your data today!

Remember, "In the world of business and e-commerce, the only safe ship in a storm is preparation." So, stay prepared, stay safe, and keep selling!

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