Ready to get started?

Learn more about the CData ODBC Driver for BigCommerce or download a free trial:

Download Now

Analyze BigCommerce Data in R

Create data visualizations and use high-performance statistical functions to analyze BigCommerce data in Microsoft R Open.

Access BigCommerce data with pure R script and standard SQL. You can use the CData ODBC Driver for BigCommerce and the RODBC package to work with remote BigCommerce data in R. By using the CData Driver, you are leveraging a driver written for industry-proven standards to access your data in the popular, open-source R language. This article shows how to use the driver to execute SQL queries to BigCommerce data and visualize BigCommerce data in R.

Install R

You can complement the driver's performance gains from multi-threading and managed code by running the multithreaded Microsoft R Open or by running R linked with the BLAS/LAPACK libraries. This article uses Microsoft R Open (MRO).

Connect to BigCommerce as an ODBC Data Source

Information for connecting to BigCommerce follows, along with different instructions for configuring a DSN in Windows and Linux environments.

BigCommerce authentication is based on the standard OAuth flow. To authenticate, you must initially create an app via the Big Commerce developer platform where you can obtain an OAuthClientId, OAuthClientSecret, and CallbackURL. These three parameters will be set as connection properties to your driver.

Additionally, in order to connect to your BigCommerce Store, you will need your StoreId. To find your Store Id please follow these steps:

  1. Log in to your BigCommerce account.
  2. From the Home Page, select Advanced Settings > API Accounts.
  3. Click Create API Account.
  4. A text box named API Path will appear on your screen.
  5. Inside you can see a URL of the following structure: https://api.bigcommerce.com/stores/{Store Id}/v3.
  6. As demonstrated above, your Store Id will be between the 'stores/' and '/v3' path paramters.
  7. Once you have retrieved your Store Id you can either click Cancel or proceed in creating an API Account in case you do not have one already.

When you configure the DSN, you may also want to set the Max Rows connection property. This will limit the number of rows returned, which is especially helpful for improving performance when designing reports and visualizations.

Windows

If you have not already, first specify connection properties in an ODBC DSN (data source name). This is the last step of the driver installation. You can use the Microsoft ODBC Data Source Administrator to create and configure ODBC DSNs.

Linux

If you are installing the CData ODBC Driver for BigCommerce in a Linux environment, the driver installation predefines a system DSN. You can modify the DSN by editing the system data sources file (/etc/odbc.ini) and defining the required connection properties.

/etc/odbc.ini

[CData BigCommerce Source] Driver = CData ODBC Driver for BigCommerce Description = My Description OAuthClientId = YourClientId OAuthClientSecret = YourClientSecret StoreId = 'YourStoreID' CallbackURL = 'http://localhost:33333'

For specific information on using these configuration files, please refer to the help documentation (installed and found online).

Load the RODBC Package

To use the driver, download the RODBC package. In RStudio, click Tools -> Install Packages and enter RODBC in the Packages box.

After installing the RODBC package, the following line loads the package:

library(RODBC)

Note: This article uses RODBC version 1.3-12. Using Microsoft R Open, you can test with the same version, using the checkpoint capabilities of Microsoft's MRAN repository. The checkpoint command enables you to install packages from a snapshot of the CRAN repository, hosted on the MRAN repository. The snapshot taken Jan. 1, 2016 contains version 1.3-12.

library(checkpoint) checkpoint("2016-01-01")

Connect to BigCommerce Data as an ODBC Data Source

You can connect to a DSN in R with the following line:

conn <- odbcConnect("CData BigCommerce Source")

Schema Discovery

The driver models BigCommerce APIs as relational tables, views, and stored procedures. Use the following line to retrieve the list of tables:

sqlTables(conn)

Execute SQL Queries

Use the sqlQuery function to execute any SQL query supported by the BigCommerce API.

customers <- sqlQuery(conn, "SELECT FirstName, LastName FROM Customers WHERE FirstName = 'Bob'", believeNRows=FALSE, rows_at_time=1)

You can view the results in a data viewer window with the following command:

View(customers)

Plot BigCommerce Data

You can now analyze BigCommerce data with any of the data visualization packages available in the CRAN repository. You can create simple bar plots with the built-in bar plot function:

par(las=2,ps=10,mar=c(5,15,4,2)) barplot(customers$LastName, main="BigCommerce Customers", names.arg = customers$FirstName, horiz=TRUE)