Skip to main content

Segment

In this document, you’ll learn about the Segment plugin, what it does, and how to install and use it.

Overview

Segment is a powerful Customer Data Platform that allows users to collect, transform, send and archive their customer data.

Segment allows users to manage different tracking and marketing tools using one API and interface, making it very simple to try out and integrate with different services in your ecommerce stack.

Common integration use cases that can be implemented with Segment include:

  • Google Analytics
  • Mailchimp
  • Zendesk
  • Data warehousing for advanced data analytics and segmentation through services like Snowflake

The Segment plugin in Medusa allows you to track ecommerce events and record them in Segment. Then, you can push these events to other destinations using Segment.

Events That the Segment Plugin Tracks

By default, the Segment plugin tracks the following events:

  1. order.placed: Triggered when an order is placed.
  2. order.shipment_created: Triggered when a shipment is created for an order.
  3. claim.created: Triggered when a new claim is created.
  4. order.items_returned: Triggered when an item in an order is returned.
  5. order.canceled: Triggered when an order is canceled.
  6. swap.created: Triggered when a swap is created.
  7. swap.shipment_created: Triggered when a shipment is created for a swap.
  8. swap.payment_completed: Triggered when payment for a swap is completed.
tip

Check out the Event Reference to learn about all available events in Medusa.

Prerequisites

Medusa Server

It is assumed you already have a Medusa server installed. If not, please follow the Quickstart guide to get started in minutes.

In addition, make sure to have Redis installed and configured with your Medusa server. If not, follow this documentation to install Redis and then configure it.

Segment Account

You need to create a Segment account to follow along with the tutorial. Segment offers a free plan to get started quickly.

Create a Segment Source

On your Segment dashboard, choose Catalog from the sidebar under Connections.

Under Connections in the sidebar choose Catalog

Then, in the catalog list find the Server category and choose Node.js from the list.

Choose Node.js under the Server category

This opens a new side menu. In the side menu, click on Add Source.

Click on Add Source in the side menu showing information about the Node.js source

This opens a new page to create a Node.js source. Enter the name of the source then click Add Source.

Enter a name under the Name field then click on the Add Source button

On the new source dashboard, you should find a Write Key. You’ll use this key in the next section after you install the Segment plugin on your Medusa server.

The Write Key is available on the new source's page

Optional: Add Destination

After you create the Segment source, you can add destinations. This is where the data is sent when you send them to Segment. You can add more than one destination.

To add a destination, on the same Segment source page, click on Add Destination in the Destinations section.

Click on the Add Destination button on the source page

You can then choose from a list of destinations such as Google Universal Analytics or Facebook Pixel.

List of some of the available destinations in Segment's catalog

The process of integrating each destination is different, so you must follow the steps detailed in Segment for each destination you choose.

Install the Segment Plugin

In the directory of your Medusa server, run the following command to install the Segment plugin:

npm install medusa-plugin-segment

Then, add the following environment variable:

SEGMENT_WRITE_KEY=<YOUR_SEGMENT_WRITE_KEY>

Where <YOUR_SEGMENT_WRITE_KEY> is the Write Key shown on the page of the Segment source you created in the previous section.

Finally, in medusa-config.js, add the following new item to the plugins array:

const plugins = [
//...
{
resolve: `medusa-plugin-segment`,
options: {
write_key: process.env.SEGMENT_WRITE_KEY,
}
}
];

Test the Plugin

Run your server with the following command:

npm start

Then, try triggering one of the mentioned events earlier in this document. For example, you can place an order either using the REST APIs or using the Next.js or Gatsby storefronts.

After you place an order, on the Segment source that you created, click on the Debugger tab. You should see at least one event triggered for each order you place. If you click on the event, you can see the order details are passed to the event.

The order completed event is recorded on the Segment source

If you added a destination, you can also check your destination to make sure the data is reflected there.

note

If the data is not appearing on the destination, the issue is related to your configuration between the Segment source and destination and not related to the Segment plugin. Go over the steps that Segment showed you when you added the destination to figure out the issue.

Add Custom Tracking

In some cases, you might want to track more events or custom events. You can do that using the SegmentService provided by the Segment Plugin.

For example, you can add the following subscriber to listen to the customer.created event and add tracking for every customer created:

class CustomerSubscriber {
constructor({ segmentService, eventBusService }) {
this.segmentService = segmentService;

eventBusService.subscribe("customer.created", this.handleCustomer);
}

handleCustomer = async (data) => {
const customerData = data;
delete customerData['password_hash'];

this.segmentService.track({
event: 'Customer Created',
userId: data.id,
properties: customerData
})
};
}

export default CustomerSubscriber;

You resolve the SegmentService using dependency injection. Then, when the customer.created event is triggered, you use the track method available in the SegmentService to send tracking data to Segment.

info

Services can be resolved and used in Subscribers, endpoints, and other Services. Learn how to resolve services in the Services documentation.

track accepts an object of data, where the keys event and userId are required. Instead of userId, you can use anonymousId to pass an anonymous user ID.

If you want to pass additional data to Segment, pass them under the properties object key.

The SegmentServer also provides the method identify to tie a user to their actions or specific traits.

Test Custom Tracking

After adding the above subscriber, run your server again if it isn’t running and create a customer using the REST APIs or one of the Medusa storefronts. If you check the Debugger in your Segment source, you should see a new event “Customer Created” tracked. If you click on it, you’ll see the data you passed to the track method.

The customer created event is recoreded on the Segment source

What’s Next 🚀