MongoDB Data Modeling

MongoDB provides the possibility to store data with a flexible and dynamic schema. This is an advantage over SQL relational databases where you must define and declare the structure of the data prior to inserting it in the database, and where it becomes hard to modify that structure afterwards. MongoDB stores data in documents, and collections of documents do not enforce the structure of the documents, even if these documents have a similar structure.


The challenge in MongoDB data modeling is to balance such flexibility with the needs of an application to access data with predictable patterns. The buzz around the “schemaless” and “non-relational” nature of NoSQL has promoted the illusion of a magical solution. But the reality is that it is harder to design an application with no structure, no schema, and no relationships. This is where Hackolade provides critical added value with its visual schema design and MongoDB schema generation capabilities.

MongoDB Data Modeling Tool

Hackolade pioneered the field of data modeling for NoSQL databases when it developed a visual tool to perform the schema design of JSON structures. Written as a visual editor for JSON Schema, Hackolade is built from the ground-up to leverage the flexibility of JSON nested objects and polymorphism.

MongoDB Data Modeling Tool

Hackolade is a MongoDB schema design software that dynamically generates scripts as you visually build a data model in forward-engineering approach. It also derives MongoDB schema based on the reverse-engineering of existing instances, so a data modeler or information architect can enrich the model with descriptions, properties, and constraints.

Components of a MongoDB Data Model

The simplest way to visualize a schema is to present it in an Entity-Relationship Diagram, a sort of blueprint of the foundations of an application, showing a map of the data. The future queries and data representation in the application screens are the main drivers for the design of a data model.

Components of a MongoDB Data Model

Entity Relationship Diagram (ERD)

An ER diagram displays JSON object nesting and illustrates the embedding and denormalization necessary for the scale and performance of the application. MongoDB is a non-relational NoSQL database technology, since relationships are not enforced by the database engine. However, data itself contains relationships, and an ER Diagram provides a visualization of these relationships.

Benefits of Data Modeling

Businesses make decisions based on information stored in databases. With data being a valuable corporate asset, data modeling becomes critical to understanding data, its interrelationships, and its rules. Hackolade increases data agility by making its structure transparent and facilitating its evolution. The benefits of data modeling for MongoDB are widespread and measurable.

NoSQL schema design is a best practice to ensure that applications evolve, scale, and perform well. A good data model helps reduce development time, increase application quality, and lower execution risks across the enterprise.

Free trial

To experience the first MongoDB data modeling tool and try Hackolade free for 14 days, download the latest version of Hackolade and install it on your desktop. There's no risk, no obligation, and no credit card required! The software runs on Windows, Mac, and Linux, plus it supports several other leading NoSQL databases.