Feature request: Public statistics


Docsearch is awesome but one little addition could be to offer public access to some statistics about most popular search and search with missing results.

The use case is we could use that to help our community to focus on missing documentations. Actually we try to guess that from our forum posts.

Thanks a lot

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Hi @julien1! This is a great point you bring up about statistics and using 0-result searches to find gaps in documentation. There’s definitely an opportunity here. We’ve had a small discussion amongst the DocSearch core team but there are no concrete plans yet.

One question for you - when you say ‘public access’, do you mean access for maintainers (like yourself) or totally public, so that anyone searching the documentation could see the analytics too?

I was thinking about something totally public, could be a JS widget I can put in my page. I understand it’s a lot of work for you and doesn’t necessary fit with algolia global plans.

I didn’t dig enough the documentation but perhaps we can get the autocomplete events and send them somewhere for logging and use them to do that.

Our master plan for DocSearch is to keep finding ways to add value to documentation and developer portals, so I think there’s a good argument that this fits in :slight_smile:

Right now we have a way to give analytics back to maintainers but not the public. We do this inside the Algolia dashboard. You can send a note to docsearch@algolia.com and ask to have that turned on.

For a public widget, you can get at the autocomplete events today (the DocSearch client library is just a lightweight wrapper around autocomplete.js). Check out the Autocomplete options section of the DocSearch client documentation to see how to hook in.

For where to send the events, one API I would recommend is Keen IO. (Disclaimer: I used to work at Keen IO). Embedded data visualization is one of Keen’s sweet spots and their free tier includes 50k events sent / month. Google Analytics is another option - the tracking will be easy but the embedding is a bit trickier.

It seem docsearch@algolia.com doesn’t exist or not public do you mean documentationsearch@algolia.com?

Yes - that one :sweat_smile:

FYI, we just added an alias between the two addresses :slight_smile:

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This would be a really cool nice-to-have, but I’m hoping for something a little bit simpler:

  1. A way to collect data on search terms being used by users of the site
  2. (Honestly, probably even better), an easy way to make sure the terms being searched are being picked up by Google Analytics–I’m open to suggestions if anyone has this working now–so that I can do my due diligence w/r/t a) identifying content gaps in the docs and b) for content that already exists, tracking things like behavior flow so that I can attempt to deduce whether users get their desired content after selecting search results.

Also, thanks @dzello and @pixelastic. I will write an email to documentationsearch@algolia.com This is a great service you guys are providing. Thanks!

Thanks @watters.ryan! Glad to have you in the community here.

For #1 - In the Algolia dashboard you can see a basic report of the search terms. If you don’t have your DocSearch project in your dashboard just include that request in your email.

For #2 - Totally agree. Having a plugin to pipe that to Google Analytics would be very cool. I don’t that anyone has built that but I bet it’d be pretty easy - the DocSearch JS library already exposes a way to hook into the underlying search helper. I know that Keen IO is thinking about making a plugin that would pipe the searchers into a Keen account for deeper analytics and linking to steps further down the funnel.

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Got access to the analytics (not the dashboard, which I’ve learned I don’t have access to…and don’t need…so NBD) and just have to say…FREAKIN’ AWESOME! Thank you so much for this incredible tool…and all for free-ninety-nine, which is easily my favorite price point.