Resolving Duplicated attributes
Merchants using services which might have used the Magento 1 API will often face this challenge. There are several historical versions of Magento which failed to implement the necessary checks preventing duplicate product attribute values. This can leave you in a situation where you are unable to make furthe changes and can therefore pose serious business risk halting your merchandising process.
The options below are 2 contrasting ways to overcome this issue.
1. Export / Import
You can use System > Data Transfer > Export to export your product inventory. This will retain the values you require for all attribute values. You can then delete the attribute duplicates safely. Once the attribute has no further duplicates you can reimport your product data and this will restore the values which might have been associated with the attribute values now deleted.
This method could pose challenges if you have a large inventory Ie. the export methods are prone to time-out unless you have well-configured (split) MAP host configuration.
2. Identify / update
This is a more pragmatic approach however if you think you have few duplicate values this method should be quite quick.
- Find your duplicate attribute values in MAP, leave the first value intact and edit any duplicates in a subtle way that distinguishes them so you can easily find the associated products later. Eg Duplicate attribute for 'Small' you should retain one value and edit any duplicates to 'Small.' or 'Small...' as an example.
- You can then add the attribute to the grid in MAP
- Search for your duplicate values Ie 'Small.'
- Bulk Update these values to 'Small'
- Return to the offending attribute and you can now safely delete the 'Small.' value safe in the knowledge the duplicates have been resolved.
Rinse & Repeat !