Zendesk Import Explained: The Hows and Whys of Data Migration Ways


Zendesk is known as a help desk focused on the market requirements and the success of its clients from a business perspective, providing everything necessary for an outstanding customer support. Many companies of various sizes and industries use it as a superset to address their customers’ needs and preferences. If you’ve decided to change your current help desk platform to Zendesk, you will probably need to figure out how to relocate all the tickets and related data in a quick, secure and cost-efficient manner.

Some of the most common methods companies use to move their data to Zendesk are CSV import, API deployment, and an automated migration using a SaaS solution. Let’s take a closer look at each of them.

Leveraging the good old CSV file

One of the ways to move the support data to Zendesk is by using the CSV file. Just export all the records from the source help desk and upload it to Zendesk. It is a free, yet manual procedure. You’ll need a designated person or even a small team to refine the information and prepare the file{s}.

But before you can go through the data and import it to Zendesk, you need to extract it. Some help desks allow exporting data into a CSV file out of the box. Others not. In that case, you will need to contact the vendor and request a personalized data export which may take some time.

Once you have the file(s), the migration process depends solely on you/your team. Specifically, on how quickly you can have the file(s) ready. You need to format the files to meet Zendesk’s requirements. For instance, Zendesk only accepts CSV files that contain up to 2000 rows. The more data you have, the more files you’ll need to create.

The recap: importing customer support records from a CSV file is a good way to get essential information in the new system. The major drawback of this method is the time needed to fulfill this task. The process is relatively secure (only your current vendor and the employee who performs Zendesk import will have access to the data), and the price is affordable.

Moving the data using API

A help desk data migration via API is beneficial from multiple perspectives: it is fast, your records don’t need any additional manipulations, and your support team can keep working as usual. The expenses, however, may vary.

In the best case scenario, you assign the task of dealing with Zendesk import via API to the in-house tech team. If you have no IT team. You need to search for a freelancer (or a team) that is familiar with the APIs of both source and target help desk platforms to ensure that the company money is rationally spent. Speaking of freelancers, each developer sets their own price and all payment issues should be discussed in advance. Moreover, be ready to monitor the process of migration.

Drawing a line, the API-based data switch has a couple of drawbacks. Each platform may set a certain number of API requests that means two things: data import will take a while and the APIs may be not quite well-featured or well documented, which limits your ability to get all the required data from one help desk or move it to a new platform.

Importing customer support history with an automated migration tool

For the sake of optimization of various business processes and ultimately – productivity, a help desk migration should be performed really quickly. So, the automated migration service becomes the best solution to meet this requirement.

The service applies advanced API methods, pays attention to every specific aspect of both current and target help desks. And ensures that all records “land” in the right place within the new platform. Also, there is a support team of seasoned pros to back all migration stages and keep you updated on the progress. Your support agents can continue working with customers while the data is being transferred to Zendesk.

The forward-thinking businesses will see that the point of performing Zendesk import using automated service is in getting all (or almost all) required data to the desired platform in a fast and secure way.


Now that you have an idea of what the options are, you can move on to making your choice. To facilitate this process, start with making a detailed plan and desired outcome of your Zendesk migration. Then, consider the above-mentioned approach taking into account your business goals and budget. Once decided, just take action!