Is activity saved before being identified

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Let’s say I track product and category views, add to cart etc before the user has been identified.

The user then goes to checkout - where we will do an identification after she provides her email.

When we look in the profile in Klaviyo, there are only activities logged after the identification. The previous activities are “lost”.


Is this by design?


Best answer by Dov 13 January 2022, 17:48

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Userlevel 7
Badge +61

Hi @ViktorBergman,

Thanks for sharing this with us.

For the sake of this, let’s call both “Add to Cart” and the checkout process two separate “identification” methods. They both “identify” the individual but in slightly different ways and they operate completely independent from one another. This is to say, the order of identification i.e. whether they add to cart first or start checkout first (or vice versa) should not matter, we should be logging all events at all points in time.

To elaborate on the methods themselves:

“Add to Cart” relies on the user being cookied to identify them

 A visitor can be identified via cookies when they: 

  • Fill out a Klaviyo signup form 
  • Click a link from a Klaviyo email 

If a user performs either of the above actions, we’ll track the “Add to Cart” event for that user.

Other events that rely on this process are Viewed Product and Active on Site, they’re all web-tracking events.

In contrast, at checkout, and as you pointed out, the “identification” method is the email input field.

If you notice your add to cart events are not being logged on the profile that could be due to another reason. I recommend browsing the community for troubleshooting (here’s a post on Added to Cart to help you get started).

I hope that helps clear things up.


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Hi @Dov,


I’m guessing my question is more in the line of past events being tracked prior to the cookied user is identified.

  1. User logs on anonymously and gets cookied as e.g. XYZ123
  2. Visits product X
  3. Adds product X to cart
  4. Fills out Klaviyo signup form
  5. Visits product Y
  6. Adds product Y to cart

Since the user is on the same cookie I would expect product X to be visible for that profile, however it seems like only events happening after step 4 above gets saved.

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Nobody knows anything about this?

Userlevel 7
Badge +61

Hi @ViktorBergman,

Thanks for your follow-up note.

The Klaviyo cookie isn’t applied in the case of a log-in. Only when a user fills out a Klaviyo sign-up form or clicks through a Klaviyo email.

Under normal circumstances where an email address is used at sign-in, there will only be activity being logged if you have identify tracking installed.

Specifically, you can identify a profile with their email address using this snippet:

  var _learnq = _learnq || [];

  _learnq.push(['identify', {
    // Change the line below to dynamically print the user's email.
    '$email' : '{{ email }}'

Also, maybe you can clarify what you mean by “logs in anonymously”. If a user is logging in from an incognito browser or there is no email address used in the log-in, i.e. just a username on the log-in page, then Klaviyo cannot capture information about that individual after signing in. This is because Klaviyo uses the email address as the primary identifier for the profile. Without it, we won’t associate the activity with the Klaviyo profile. 


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Thanks @Dov ,

I should clarify, when I mean “logs on anonymously” I mean that they visit the site.

The user visits the site and gets cookied (there is a __kla_id cookie present). We start sending events. Those events are lost when we identify the same user (wether they signup on a form or if we call identify manually). Only events tracked AFTER the identification gets stored?

Let’s say the only time we call Identify on the site is when they have filled out the checkout (i.e. we can send and abandonded cart). We do not know anything about what this user did on the site before they were identified - even if they are cookied with the exact same __kla_id)

Userlevel 7
Badge +61

Hi @ViktorBergman,

Thanks for your reply.

If the user used the same email address in both circumstances (cookied prior to starting the checkout due to some web tracking activity, and subsequently started the checkout) all events, both before and after the checkout event, should be logged on the same profile. If you are noticing that is not the case, then I recommend contacting our support team to have a closer look for you. If you decide to contact support, please supply them with an example email address which has run through the aforementioned steps (cookied on the site, started a checkout) and they’ll have a look for you.

I hope the explanation above helped clarify the default behavior at the very least.

Thanks for being a member of our community.

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The point was when the user did not identify themselves before checkout, only when they provide us with their email address upon checkout. I will interprete this conversation as that no events occuring from cookied users before being identified are saved, meaning there are no traces of what happened before they identified themselves and abandonded the checkout. I’ve seen this behaviour in both custom integrations and the official Shopify integration.


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I think the situation described by the OP (please correct me if I’m mistaken) is as follows:

  • Unidentified user visits website [No email is associated]
  • Klaviyo uses a cookie to track that user’s website engagements (eg - product views, activity on sIte, add-to-cart, etc.)
  • That user EVENTUALLY -- either during the initial session or some future session that still has the same cookie -- does provide their email either through a signup form or by adding it during the checkout process
    • Do all of the actions tracked prior to receiving the email -- let’s call them the “cookie actions” -- get reconciled and attributed to the new Klaviyo user that will be idenitifed by the email they provided?
    • If “cookie actions” do NOT get attributed to the Email then they are basically “Lost” as has been alluded to previous posts.

I hope that the above is a clear breakdown of the use case that is in this thread. Thanks.

@Dov Can you please answer the above post? I am able to reproduce this behavior. 

Userlevel 7
Badge +30

Hi @AccelPay and @ViktorBergman!

I can hop in here to clarify - the events that are tracked prior to a profile being created/identified at checkout/sign-up form are not back-filled to the profile. It’s only the activity that occurs after the profile is identified as a Klaviyo profile that is tracked.


I’ll update the thread if this functionality changes in the future.