Collection Configs

Payload Collections are defined through configs of their own, and you can define as many as your application needs. Each Collection will scaffold a MongoDB collection automatically based on fields that you define.

It's often best practice to write your Collections in separate files and then import them into the main Payload config.


slug *Unique, URL-friendly string that will act as an identifier for this Collection.
fields *Array of field types that will determine the structure and functionality of the data stored within this Collection. Click here for a full list of field types as well as how to configure them.
labelsSingular and plural labels for use in identifying this Collection throughout Payload. Auto-generated from slug if not defined.
descriptionText or React component to display below the Collection label in the List view to give editors more information.
adminAdmin-specific configuration. See below for more detail.
hooksEntry points to "tie in" to Collection actions at specific points. More
accessProvide access control functions to define exactly who should be able to do what with Documents in this Collection. More
authSpecify options if you would like this Collection to feature authentication. For more, consult the Authentication documentation.
uploadSpecify options if you would like this Collection to support file uploads. For more, consult the Uploads documentation.
timestampsSet to false to disable documents' automatically generated createdAt and updatedAt timestamps.

* An asterisk denotes that a property is required.

Simple collection example

const Orders = {
slug: 'orders',
fields: [
name: 'total',
type: 'number',
required: true,
name: 'placedBy',
type: 'relationship',
relationTo: 'customers',
required: true,

More collection config examples

You can find an assortment of example collection configs in the Payload source code on GitHub.

Admin options

You can customize the way that the Admin panel behaves on a collection-by-collection basis by defining the admin property on a collection's config.

useAsTitleSpecify a top-level field to use for a document title throughout the Admin panel. If no field is defined, the ID of the document is used as the title.
defaultColumnsArray of field names that correspond to which columns to show by default in this collection's List view.
disableDuplicate Disables the "Duplicate" button while editing documents within this collection.
enableRichTextRelationshipThe Rich Text field features a Relationship element which allows for users to automatically reference related documents within their rich text. Set to true by default.
previewFunction to generate preview URLS within the Admin panel that can point to your app. More.
componentsSwap in your own React components to be used within this collection. More


Collection admin options can accept a preview function that will be used to generate a link pointing to the frontend of your app to preview data.

If the function is specified, a Preview button will automatically appear in the corresponding collection's Edit view. Clicking the Preview button will link to the URL that is generated by the function.

The preview function accepts two arguments:

  1. The document being edited
  2. An options object, containing locale and token properties. The token is the currently logged in user's JWT.

Example collection with preview function:

slug: 'posts',
fields: [
name: 'slug',
type: 'text',
required: true,
admin: {
preview: (doc, { locale }) => {
if (doc?.slug) {
return `${doc.slug}?locale=${locale}`,
return null;

Access control

You can specify extremely granular access control (what users can do with documents in a collection) on a collection by collection basis. To learn more, go to the Access Control docs.


Hooks are a powerful way to extend collection functionality and execute your own logic, and can be defined on a collection by collection basis. To learn more, go to the Hooks documentation.

Field types

Collections support all field types that Payload has to offer—including simple fields like text and checkboxes all the way to more complicated layout-building field groups like Blocks. Click here to learn more about field types.


You can import collection types as follows:

import { CollectionConfig } from 'payload/types';
// This is the type used for incoming collection configs.
// Only the bare minimum properties are marked as required.
import { SanitizedCollectionConfig } from 'payload/types';
// This is the type used after an incoming collection config is fully sanitized.
// Generally, this is only used internally by Payload.

Global Configs