Collect metadata edit

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To collect additional data on top of our collected metrics, you can append metadata. With this feature you can specify specific parameters and it will be included in our database with your datapoints (events or page views).

While you can send and export metadata, you can download them, but you can’t see it in our dashboard at the moment. We are implementing those features currently.

Do not include personal data in your metadata like email addresses, identifiers, or any other type of personal data. We don’t allow it and your account might be suspended.

This feature works for all datapoints; events and page views. To make it easy for you we created 3 ways to collect metadata:

  1. Send metadata along with the sa_event-function
  2. Set metadata on the window object
  3. Add metadata via a callback function

When using multiple ways to add metadata, the objects will be merged into one. First we grab the metadata from the event function, then we merge it with the metadata in the window object, finally we merge the data from the callback function into the metadata. If values have the same keys, they will be overwritten by the latest collect method.

You might want to add the event placeholder function on top of your HTML.

1. Send metadata along with the sa_event-function

This only works when you manually trigger an event. If you want to add metadata for page views or automated events, check the next two options.

The most common way to send metadata is specifying it when you create an event:

sa_event("click_download", { filename: "document.pdf" });

In above example you send the filename as metadata.

2. Set metadata on the window object

An example on how to to set metadata on the window object:

<script>
  sa_metadata = { theme_color: "green" };
</script>

Every time an event or page view is sent, we check for the sa_metadata object and append this metadata to your event or page view.

3. Add metadata via a callback function

You can specify the metadata callback function via data-metadata-collector. Let’s say you want to add some data to events and page views. This is how you set up a myAddMetadataFunction-function:

<script>
  function myAddMetadataFunction(data) {
    if (data.type === "pageview") {
      return { page_id: 123 };
    } else if (data.type === "event") {
      return { event_id: 124, modified_at: new Date() };
    }
    return {};
  }
</script>
<script
  async
  defer
  data-metadata-collector="myAddMetadataFunction"
  src="https://scripts.simpleanalyticscdn.com/latest.js"
></script>

The function you specify in data-metadata-collector recieves an object with 2 values: type and path. Value type is either pageview or event. The path is a the path of the page. For example, /contact. Make sure to always return an object.

Metadata keys

We replace non-alphanummeric characters with an underscore. We also trim underscores from the front and end of the key.

sa_event("click_signup", { "$%!k_e___y__": "value" });

In the example above, $%!k_e___y__ will be stored as k_e_y.

Metadata values

Metadata is a simple key/value object in JavaScript. We don’t allow nesting, functions, objects, arrays, and falsy values (except for booleans).

You can send 4 different types as metadata:

  • Text – E.g.: Title of a page: The privacy-first Google Analytics alternative
  • Boolean – E.g.: Dark mode: true
  • Number – E.g.: Product id: 834710
  • Date – E.g.: Created at date: 2022-11-24T17:04:07.123Z

Text

Text is limited to 1000 characters. If it exceeds that limit, we truncate it.

sa_event("click_download", { filename: "document.pdf" });

Boolean

To set a boolean you can send true or false.

sa_event("click_signup", { darkmode: true });

Number

To store numbers, you can specify numbers as you normally would.

sa_event("click_buy", { product_id: 10828, usd: 50.99 });

There are some limitations to numbers within metadata objects:

  • Numbers should be finite
  • Should be between -2x1036 and 2x1036
  • The more decimals you use, the smaller this range gets

Date

When sending dates in JavaScript they will be converted to a string. For example, new Date() becomes 2022-11-24T17:04:07.123Z. We recommend wrapping your datas in a new Date() constructor or converting to text via toISOString(). That way you’re always sure you’re sending dates in the right format.

sa_event("click_signup", { created_at: new Date() });

Export metadata

In our export UI, you can download your metadata. Metadata fields will only show when they are included in the selected period.

Export metadata the UI of Simple Analytics

Export metadata the UI of Simple Analytics