How to group products with different handles

Daniel Orge
Daniel Orge
  • Updated


In this article, we describe how to group products with different handles.

Getting started

These variants belong to the same product. Why are they separated?

Sometimes products can be created and managed by vendors in less basic ways. Like creating variants of the same product with different handles and having an app or plugin to group them. When that is the case, the details in the vendor platform API will not reflect that grouping and won’t allow you to publish the products straight from the Inventory Feed as you normally would.

What to do?

Method 1 - Creating products directly in the store

This is less time-consuming if:

  • We’re talking about a very small set of variants;
  • If the SKUs match the SKU in the feed and if the vendor SKU is correctly populated in the store, thus allowing Onport to Automatically connect by SKU, which can be enabled in the Inventory Feed. It is important that there are no duplicate SKUs;

Consists of creating the products directly in the store with changed handles, so that the variants that should be grouped into a single product share a common handle. If SKU and vendor SKU are correctly populated according to the product details in the feed, all we have to do is:

  1. enable “Automatically connect by SKU” in the Inventory Feed Settings, in the Publishing tab;
  2. make sure the option to automatically connect variants in Inventory Feeds in the Integrations section is also enabled. If no duplicate SKUs exist in the feed, this should be quick and automated at this point. The products should connect automatically.

If the previous conditions are not entirely met, it may be needed to manually connect the products to their Inventory Feed counterparts.

Method 2 - Creating a separate Google Sheet feed for publishing

This is less time-consuming if:

  • We’re handling large sets of products;
  • If there are duplicate SKUs in the feed;

In this case, we need to extract the feed onto a CSV:

Import it to a Google Sheet file, published and shared publicly. We then set the Shopify feed as follows in the Mapping tab:

Next, we create a new Google Sheet feed with the Google Sheet file we created from the export and proceed to custom-map the columns in the Mapping tab. Here, we need to set the options as follows: 


At this point, you need to correct the handles (and possibly the duplicate SKUs if they exist) in this sheet so that variants that should group into one single product share a common handle (a quick option, if the variants have the same title, would be to copy the titles onto the handle column and enable the option to signify the handle).

This Google Sheet is the one you’ll be publishing the items from, whereas the Shopify feed will serve only for Inventory and Pricing updates. Any duplicated SKUs that you may have corrected in the sheet may need to be manually connected in the Shopify feed.

Note: while this comes as a solution for specific issues arising from the way vendors manage their catalogs, this can also serve as a go-to for any marketplace seeking to add further curation to their catalog. Getting details from your vendor's store and applying them to a master file of your own that allows you to clear out errors and complete the product details going into your store is one of the ways to improve the overall shopping experience.

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