Event Retention Management is in beta. If you'd like to try out this feature, talk to your customer success manager.
When you save custom events in Iterable, you're tracking information about important moments in your users' journey with your brand.
For example, you might create custom events when users sign up for accounts, when they log in and out of your app, or when they finish filling in their account information on your website—whatever makes sense for your use case.
Custom events enrich the user profiles in your Iterable projects, and you can use them to personalize the messages that you send (for example, through segmentation and journey filters).
Historically, Iterable hasn't provided a way to the delete custom events. While it can sometimes be useful to save data indefinitely, it can also pose a challenge for data hygiene. Over time, you may be holding on to information that you'll never use, which can obscure the important data that your team needs for your marketing efforts.
With Event Retention Management, you can set retention policies for each kind of custom event that you store in Iterable. Iterable automatically deletes events that age out of their retention periods.
In this article
- Setting custom event retention periods
Frequently asked questions
- What is the default retention period?
- Are there downstream effects of custom event deletion?
- How do I know when an event deletion is happening? Or which events will be deleted?
- How precise are retention periods? When (and how often) are events deleted?
- When events are deleted, does it impact the event definitions in my project settings?
- Is there a way to undo event deletion?
Setting custom event retention periods
To set retention periods for the various kind of custom events you store in your Iterable project:
Navigate to Settings > Custom Event Usage, and you'll see a list of all the different kinds of custom events defined in your project settings. You'll also see the volume stored for each kind (where volume is the number of event instances, saved in the timeframe selected at the top of the page, that have not been deleted).
For each kind of event, the Retention period column indicates how long your project will save individual event instances before deleting them.
To change an event's retention period, click the three dots on the right-hand side of its row in the table and choose Update retention period.
In the Update event retention period window, choose one of the following options: Unlimited (default), 7 days, 30 days, 90 days, 180 days, 365 days.
Changes to an event's retention policy are applied immediately, which may cause some of your project's saved events to be enqueued for deletion right away. This means, for example, that if you change an event's retention policy to 7 days, and then immediately change it to 30 days, events older than 7 days may still be deleted.
Frequently asked questions
What is the default retention period?
If you define a new custom event in project settings, or if your project receives (via an API call) and saves a never-before-seen kind of custom event, it will be given an unlimited retention period.
Are there downstream effects of custom event deletion?
When you delete a custom event:
If a journey uses a filter that looks for a particular custom event, and a visitor to that journey has that event deleted from their profile (even while they are already in the journey), it may affect their path through the journey.
If your project associates a particular kind of event with historical conversions, deleting instances of that event can change your conversion metrics.
How do I know when an event deletion is happening? Or which events will be deleted?
Currently, there's no way to see when a deletion is taking place or if a particular event is in the deletion queue.
How precise are retention periods? When (and how often) are events deleted?
Event deletions run periodically. Events will not be deleted before their retention period is up (unless they were already enqueued for deletion by a previous, more restrictive retention period), but they are not always deleted at the precise moment that their retention period expires. However, you should assume that they will be; there is no guarantee that an event will be saved for any time beyond its retention period.
When events are deleted, does it impact the event definitions in my project settings?
No, deleting events does not change or remove event defintions in project settings. It just removes saved instances of those events.
Is there a way to undo event deletion?
No, there is no way to undo event deletion. Deleted data cannot be recovered.
If an event gets enqueued for deletion (which can happen immediately when you change a retention period), there is no way to prevent the deletion from happening.
Use caution when setting retention periods, so that you don't inadvertently delete custom event data that you (or someone on your team) might need.