Some of our opportunities are created in Salesforce and others are created in another system. I'm trying to make sure they all end up in both systems.

When using upsert, in the data loader (just using the gui to start with), I have an external ID and the Salesforce Opportunity ID in my csv file.

I'm getting an error, "Opportunity ID; id value of incorrect type" on the records not in Salesforce (i.e. No Salesforce ID in the file.).

Because of my two-way snychronization situation, am I going to have to do a separate insert (based on external id) and update (based on Salesforce Opportuntity ID)? This would also require to separate csv files since one file can't contain both the external and the Salesforce Opportunity ID.

  • You are going to have to use two files since you do not have just one field that you can use as the unique upsert key. If those two systems 'talk' to each other in some way where you can share some sort of common unique key then you are in business otherwise two files is your best bet.
    – Eric Clay
    Dec 3, 2015 at 20:53
  • @EricClay - you should post that as an answer. Also, it is the right answer.
    – JeffO
    Dec 11, 2015 at 21:00

3 Answers 3


On Data Loader, you should see a dropdown when doing an upsert. In this dropdown, select the External ID you have as the "Matching Field".

Then your upsert should work fine.

  • I did that but got the same error because I need to rely on two id's: my external and salesforce.
    – JeffO
    Dec 11, 2015 at 20:58
  • I'm afraid I'm confused. Are the both fields in the same column? Can you separate them? Dec 12, 2015 at 13:29
  • Two fields in two separate columns. Both Ids are needed because a new opportunity record could be entered to either system, then both need to stay in sync.
    – JeffO
    Dec 20, 2015 at 19:23

Just to be more precise, External IDs are meant to be used with Upserts, as they either

  1. Update the existing record with same External ID
  2. Create new Record

Dataloader also follows the same behavior and only allows to map external ID mappings with upsert button.

  • I have the upsert working, but had to create a separate file to upload based on salesforce id.
    – JeffO
    Dec 11, 2015 at 20:59

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