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Numeric search keys

Batch Services uses the numeric search keys you send as a single match point to find matching records in WorldCat for projects that cancel or set institution-level holdings.

You can submit search keys for a WorldCat numeric index in a word processing or spreadsheet file. You can submit a set of search keys for only one numeric index in a single file, or you can send multiple files, each containing search keys for a different numeric index. See guidelines and instructions below.

You can use the following numeric indexes:

Number index Formatting Example of search key
LCCN—Library of Congress Control Number Include hyphens. 84-23765
ISBN—International Standard Book Number Omit hyphens. 0818903457
ISSN—International Standard Serial Number Include hyphens. 1060-0396
OCLC record control number Include one search index prefix: #, *, ocm/ocn. #1299 or *13713166 or ocm32551273/ocn141381273

Guidelines and instructions for submitting numeric search keys

Prepare your numeric search key text or spreadsheet file(s)

  • Limit: 80,000 search keys per file.
  • Enter numeric search keys in a single column, one search key per line, in a spreadsheet or a text file.
  • If more than one numeric search key type (OCLC control number, ISBN, LCCN, ISSN) will be used in a project, create only one file per type.
  • Do not create multiple files for the same index unless the number of search keys exceeds 80,000. Otherwise, combine smaller files for the same index into one.
  • Remove duplicate entries, blank lines, invalid search keys, and/or spurious data from files before sending them.

Order a numeric search key Batchload project

Use the Batchload Order form in the OCLC Online Service Center (OSC). See more about ordering Batchload projects or log in to the OSC now to order.

Once you are in the Batchload Order form, to specify that your order is a numeric search keys project:

  1. Select Non-MARC in the question "Identify the format of the data you are submitting...."
  2. Under "Format," select Spreadsheet or Delimited text as the type of file you will send.
  3. Under "Type of data," select List of numeric search keys

    See complete Batchload ordering instructions in chapter 3 of the OCLC Batch Services User Guide.

Submit your files for processing

  1. After you receive your Batchload order confirmation e-mail with your Project ID number (a number that begins with "P"), attach the search key spreadsheet(s) or text file(s) that you created to an e-mail.
    • Attach all files for your project to the same e-mail.
    • Do not send search keys in the body of the e-mail.
  2. Include your OCLC symbol and Project ID in the Subject line of your e-mail, and send to