Enterprises need ways to import metadata but available programs have different tools to pull in the information. Find out which tool is best at importing your metadata. Here’s a guide explaining what metadata is and how to import it. Further, it should give you a greater understanding of the different benefits received from importing metadata.

What Is Metadata?

Metadata offers details about data files, such as photos or videos. It assigns labels like date, file size and location to assets. Metadata tags files with descriptors that give information about what the file includes. It is similar to tagging files with different types of keywords.

Metadata gives users the chance to find files quickly based on specific tags. For example, if a user had photos of hamburgers somewhere on their computer, the metadata would help them search for them and find them quickly. They could search for tags such as ‘burgers’, ‘sandwich’ or ‘food’ to reach their hamburger photos.

A picture of a hamburger.
Metadata adds valuable tags to pictures.

How to Import Metadata

The way in which you import metadata depends on the type of system you use. Most asset organization systems have an option for metadata import in the settings section. Upload the intended metadata file, which is usually XML or CSV format.

Metadata is information about a file, and users need this information to be available wherever the file is stored. Therefore, if a file is moved to a new location or program, it’s important to import the metadata from its previous location.

Metadata building blocks.
Look for a metadata option in the settings section.

Benefits of Importing Metadata

Importing metadata is important when taking files from one system and bringing them into a newly implemented software. For example, if a company begins using a new website design software and wants to use its current images in this software, they could upload the file metadata to the new system. This lets them handle their files in a central location and avoids duplicate uploads or multiple data write-ups.

The benefits are especially apparent for companies coordinating a transfer of large quantities of files. These files are usually in need of information such as date, time or author which is where metadata is crucial. To best operate metadata management during this transfer, importing metadata into the new system is valuable.

A picture of the XML logo in a pattern.
Metadata typically is stored onto an XML format.

Software to Import Metadata

Importing metadata varies depending on the software you’re trying to import it with. There’s no specific right or wrong answer but there are things to look for when determining whether a program does what you need in terms of metadata. You want a system that is capable of managing metadata on a large scale, as well as importing it into other systems.

Programs like Canto digital asset management (DAM) are comprehensive file storage systems that have automated metadata tagging features as well as the ability to import metadata into your other implemented programs. DAM operates its metadata importing from CSV files or other methods. Users can select the information needed, add it to the relevant file, then import it to the new system. It’s a convenient process, especially for companies in need of large-scale file transfers.

Choose a system that can import metadata to all your new software programs and you’ll have great success with your projects and campaigns.

Casey Schmidt – Content Manager and Industry Expert | Canto

Casey is a content management and branding expert who enjoys taking complex subjects and making them easy to understand for readers.