Combine Lists

This feature requires Manager user level or higher.

Users and agencies who manage multiple brands or assets often keep multiple lists in MailChimp, but we generally recommend that most users manage a single, combined list. When you combine lists, you reduce the cost of your Monthly Plan, because it removes duplicate subscribers across different lists. To distinguish subscribers from different lists, use groups in your combined list.

Below, you'll learn how to back up your existing lists, match fields and combine lists, remove unsubscribed and cleaned addresses, and delete your old lists.

Before You Combine Lists

Back Up Your Lists

List actions cannot be undone, so be sure to back up your existing lists before you do anything else. In case the combined list doesn't turn out as expected, you'll have copies of your old lists to fall back on.

For each list you want to combine to a master list, you need to export the subscribed, unsubscribed, and cleaned addresses. Follow the steps below to export each group of addresses.

  1. Navigate to the Lists page.
  2. Click the list you want to export.
  3. Click Export List to export active subscribers.
  4. When the export is complete, click Export as CSV.
  5. To export unsubscribed addresses, click the Subscribed drop-down menu and choose Unsubscribed. Repeat steps 3 and 4 to export those addresses.
  6. To export cleaned addresses, click the Subscribed drop-down menu and choose Cleaned. Repeat steps 3 and 4 to export those addresses.

Repeat these steps for each of the lists you're working with, so you have a CSV file of each list's subscribed, unsubscribed, and cleaned addresses. If you're using an existing list as your master list, be sure to also export that list for backup.

Create a Master List

After you back up your lists, create a master list where you'll combine your subscribers. It's up to you whether you create a new list or choose an existing list for this purpose. If you use an existing list, rename it to indicate its master status.

Match Field Labels

The information stored in the list you're moving your subscribers from will overwrite existing data in the list you're adding to.

Before you combine, you'll match the field labels between your old lists and your master list, so that the combined list field data is mapped to the correct label. Merge tags and merge field numbers don't need to match. If matching labels is difficult with your lists, consider combining lists by CSV.

 

Ways to Combine Lists

There are two different ways to combine lists in MailChimp—the Combine feature or via CSV import.

Below, you'll learn how to use these options.

The Combine Feature

  1. From the Lists page, click the drop-down menu for the list you want to add to your master list and choose Combine lists.
    Select Combine lists from the drop-down menu
  2. Use the drop-down menu to choose your master list and check any groups you want to add these subscribers to, if you've set up groups. Then, click Next.
    Select the name of list you want to combine into
  3. Type CONFIRM into the pop-up modal, and click Combine Lists.
    Type CONFIRM to complete the action

Repeat this process for each of the lists you want to combine with your master list.

When you've combined all of your lists, remove your cleaned and unsubscribed addresses.

Import from a CSV File

To import the backup CSV files you made, follow the steps below. With the CSV method, subscribers will remain in your old list until you delete them or until you delete your old list.

  1. Navigate to the Lists page, click the drop-down menu for your master list, and select Import.
  2. Click Import from a CSV or TXT File and browse to choose a list file you exported.
    Cursor hovers over the CSV option.
  3. Check the box for the groups you want to add these subscribers to, if you have those set up.
  4. Check Auto-update my existing list. If a subscriber is already on your master list, we'll update their info to include the group you selected.
  5. Click Upload List to begin importing the file.
    Check auto-update box to update info
  6. You'll be prompted to match your fields. Make sure your fields match across lists.
  7. Click Done.
  8. Repeat this for each list you combine into your master list. When you're done, remove your cleaned and unsubscribed addresses.

Remove Unsubscribed and Cleaned Addresses

If you had subscribers on multiple lists, you might have various information for them. To help keep your list healthy and avoid emailing bounced and unsubscribed addresses, remove the unsubscribed and cleaned addresses for each list you combined.

  1. Open the unsubscribed or cleaned CSV file on your computer using a spreadsheet program.
  2. From the Lists page, click the drop-down menu for your master list and choose Manage subscribers.
  3. Click Unsubscribe people.
  4. Copy the email addresses from the open CSV file, and paste them into the email addresses field on the Unsubscribe People screen, then click Unsubscribe.

Use this bulk unsubscribe feature for all of the cleaned and unsubscribed addresses for each list you combined to keep your list healthy.

Delete Your Old Lists

After you combine lists and unsubscribe old addresses, you can delete your old lists from your account. Save all your exported CSV files in case you need your original lists again later.

When you delete lists, you also deletes list stats. If you want to combine your lists but don't want to delete your list stats, you could remove your subscribers from your old lists, but leave the list intact.

  1. Navigate to the Lists page.
  2. Check the box next to the lists you want to delete.
  3. Click Delete.

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