Introduction to data feeds

 

Our recent redesign simplifies the data transfer experience by combining raw and modelled data sources into a single object - data feeds. We’re gradually releasing this new feature to our customers.
If you see Data Feeds in the left navigation sidebar, you’ll in the right place. If not, go here.

This article introduces you to data feeds and includes:

Notes:

What are data feeds?

Data feeds power your metric visualizations. They connect the source data from your files, databases, applications, and services to your metrics.

When you connect to your source data and bring it into PowerMetrics, you create data feeds. Data feeds combine your account connection (the service account you’re logged into that has the data for your metrics) and your data (as a visual component you can view and edit).

Think of a data feed as the information channel between your source data and your metrics. When you create a data feed, you define the query to use when retrieving data. Every time your data refreshes, the data feed gets updated accordingly. The resulting data is then added to the existing data for all the metrics that use the feed. The metrics then incorporate that new data into their history.

Note: In PowerMetrics, there are two kinds of data feeds, the ones you create for custom metrics and the ones we create for you when you add instant metrics. Data feeds you create are fully editable and controlled by you. Data feeds that are created automatically are managed by Klipfolio (referred to as “managed” data feeds). To ensure the integrity and accuracy of your instant metrics, these data feeds offer limited editing options. The underlying data they’re connected to cannot be edited.

Note: Data feeds don't apply to dbt™ Semantic Layer metrics.

Why data feeds?

  • Data feeds are a single and powerful way to manage the flow of data into your metrics. Connect to your data once and build one or more data feeds that can be reused across multiple metrics.
  • Data feeds broaden your team’s ability to create custom metrics by hiding data complexity from less technically inclined builders. The heavy lifting is done in the query builder and the data feed editor. Once your data has been queried, edited, and saved as a data feed, the action of creating custom metrics becomes accessible to everyone.
  • When you create custom data feeds, you can transform your data using Excel-like formulas and functions, unpivot, merge/join, and more. The abundance of editing options and the versatility and power of the formula bar make the data feed editor an effective tool for organizing large data sets and for cleansing messy, incomplete, or incorrect source data. 
  • If your source data uses a tree-structured format, you can quickly convert it to tabular data in the data feed editor. The result is a more approachable format that’s easier to understand, especially for less-experienced builders. Converting JSON/XML data in the data feed editor.

Opening your data feeds list

To open your list of data feeds, click Data Feeds in the left navigation sidebar.
add data feeds button

Adding data feeds to your list

If you don't have any data feeds yet, or you want to add more, click add data feed button in the upper-right corner of the data feed list page.

Filtering your data feeds list

Apply filtering to your data feed list to quickly find the specific data feeds you're looking for. Filtering options (as shown below) display at the top of the page.
filtering the list of data feeds

  • Narrow down your list using the search field: Type an entry into the search field to display associated data feeds. For example, to see a list of your Google Analytics 4 data feeds, enter "Google Analytics" in the search field. Note: Searching is made easier when you give your data feeds meaningful names.
  • Filter by service: Display data feeds for one or all services, for example, display data feeds that connect to data in your Google Analytics 4 account or to data in uploaded files. This list grows as you create data feeds for more services. You can either find the data feeds by service by typing in the field or by selecting from the drop-down list.
  • Display data feeds by category: Display all data feeds, only data feeds created by you, only data feeds that are shared with you, or only data feeds that are managed by Klipfolio.
  • Filter by refresh status: Select All to show all data feeds regardless of refresh status, Active to show only those with no refresh errors, or In error to show only those with refresh errors.

Viewing details for all data feeds

From your list of data feeds, you can view general details for all of your data feeds, including:

  • Name: The name of the data feed.
  • Owner: The person who created the data feed.
  • Created: The date and time the data feed was created.
  • Last refreshed: The last time the data feed was refreshed or re-uploaded (for data in uploaded files).
    Note: Data feeds refresh automatically based on a schedule (every 15 minutes to every 4 hours depending on your pricing plan). To manually queue one or more data feeds for refresh, select the checkbox beside the name of each data feed, then click the queue for refresh button Queue for refresh button on the top-left of the page.
  • Refresh status: A refresh status of OK means the data feed is updating as expected. A refresh status of Failed refresh means the data feed is having trouble refreshing.  (See an example below of a data feed with a "failed refresh" refresh status.) A refresh status of Disabled means the data feed has failed to refresh 20 times and, as a result, has been disabled. 
    Clicking the refresh status, opens the data feed. For more detailed information on interacting with the refresh status, go to this section of the article: “Viewing details for specific data feeds”. example of failed refresh
    Note: Refresh status for data feeds that are connected to data from an uploaded file will display as N/A.
  • Metrics: The number of metrics that use this data feed. You can click on the number that displays here to go to the data feed with the Metrics tab open. From there you can click a metric to open its homepage. (See below.)
    related metrics
    related metrics
  • 3-dot menu options: Click the 3-dot menu for a data feed in the list to share or delete it.
    data feed menu options
    Note: To delete multiple data feeds, select the checkbox beside the name for each one in the list, then click the deleting data feeds Delete button on the top-left of the page. When you delete a data feed, it’s removed for all users and the data connection for all metrics that used the data feed is broken (the metric will continue to be accessible but will no longer update with new or changed data).

Understanding data feed icons

In the list of data feeds, an icon displays beside each data feed name. (The same icon also displays in the title bar when you open a data feed.) Depending on the source, type, and refresh state of a data feed, the following icons can display:

Icon Description
service icon

The Service icon indicates the service, or services, the data feed is connected to.

file upload icon

The File upload icon displays for data feeds that are connected to data in uploaded files.

REST/URL icon

The REST/URL icon displays for data feeds that are connected to data that was created using a REST/URL query.

error icon

The Error icon warns you when a data feed has been deleted.

Note: If you delete a data feed for a metric, the metric will stop refreshing and will only display static data from that time onward.

Viewing details for specific data feeds

On the data feeds list page, you can select specific data feeds to take a closer look. Clicking a data feed in the list opens the data feed so you can view or edit it. You can also open a data feed in a new tab by clicking "Ctrl + click" (for Windows) or "Command + click" (for macOS). Learn more about editing data feeds.

When you open a data feed, the data displays in the main window. If a data feed contains many rows of data, all rows may not display at once. To see additional rows or to go to the last few rows or first few rows, click one of the links that display below the data feed table. For example, “Showing 75 of 352 rows". "Show 100 more.” or "Go to the last few rows". (As shown below.)
display rows

With the data feed open, you'll see quick-access buttons for editing, sharing, queueing for refresh, viewing refresh errors (if applicable), downloading as a CSV file, and adding a metric. (See below.)
Note: You can also access the 3-dot menu here, which is another way to get to the following actions: edit, share, queue for refresh, view refresh errors (if applicable), download as CSV, add a metric, and delete the data feed.
data feed menu options

Note: When you delete a data feed, it’s removed for all users and the data connection for all metrics that used the data feed is broken (the metric will continue to be accessible but will no longer update with new or changed data).

Click the About tab to access the following details:

  • Description: A description displays if you entered one when creating or editing the data feed.
  • Name: The name of the data feed.
  • Owner: The person who created the data feed.
  • Metrics: The number of metrics that use this data feed. Clicking the digit opens the Metrics tab where you can view and open the metric(s) that are connected to the data feed.
  • Created: The date and time the data feed was created.
  • Data feed ID: The ID number for the data feed. This information may be needed, for example, when contacting Support if you’re having issues with a data feed.
  • Data service: This field displays information about the source data the data feed is connected to, including the service type (for example, Google Analytics or File Upload) and the data format (table or tree structure). (See below.)
    associated data service
  • Refresh rate: The current refresh frequency rate for this data feed (and its associated metrics). Note: This setting is not applicable for data feeds that are connected to data from an uploaded file.
  • Refresh status: A refresh status of OK means the data feed is updating as expected. (See below.)
    OK refresh status
    A refresh status of Failed refresh means the data feed is having trouble refreshing. (See below.)
    failed refresh status
    A refresh status of Disabled means the data feed has failed to refresh 20 times and, as a result, has been disabled. (See below.)
    disabled refresh status
    There are a couple refresh status related options you can access from the queue for refresh menuQueue for refresh drop-down menu (located in the toolbar). To manually queue a data feed for refresh (outside of the auto-refresh schedule) select Queue for refresh. If you have edit access to the data feed, select View refresh errors to investigate why the data feed isn’t refreshing as expected. These actions can be performed in view or edit mode. Go to this article for detailed information on data refresh.
    Note: This setting is not applicable for data feeds that are connected to data from an uploaded file.
  • Last refreshed: The last time the data feed was refreshed.
    Note: This setting is not applicable for data feeds that are connected to data from an uploaded file. For that file type, Last uploaded displays instead.
  • View refresh errors: This option is only applicable if the data feed is failing to refresh or has been disabled due to multiple failed refreshes. If you have edit access to the data feed, you can click the View refresh errors link to open the Refresh errors page for the data feed. (See below.) Go to this article for detailed information on data refresh.
    view refresh errors

Click the Metrics tab to view and interact with its associated metrics:

  • Click a metric to open it or click the 3-dot menu to open it in a new tab, learn about the metric, or delete it. (See below.) The information that displays in a metric’s “About” page is described in detail here.
    metric menu options
    Note: The 3-dot menu options you see depend on your access to the metric. For example, if a metric has been shared with you with view only rights, you’ll be able to open it in a new tab for viewing but you won't be able to delete it. Metrics that haven’t been shared with you will be greyed out and you won’t be able to interact with them.
  • If the data feed doesn’t have any associated metrics yet, you can add some by clicking +Add metric. (See below.) Note: This option is not available for data feeds that are managed by Klipfolio (the data feeds that get created when you add instant metrics).
    options for adding metrics
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