Activate As a Cloud Service: Digital Accelerator For Streamlined Experiences

May 19, 2021 | Brendan Walsh
Blog image Activate As a Cloud Service: Digital Accelerator For Streamlined Experiences

Activate, built by the award-winning Adobe practice at Bounteous, packages years of best practices and successful deployments to help clients quickly create a modern, useful digital experience. Designed to help companies take full advantage of the Adobe Experience Cloud, kickstarting Adobe Experience Manager (AEM) development, and crafted to seamlessly enable tracking through Adobe Analytics and personalization through Adobe Target.

Activate is Cloud Service ready which means it fully supports cloud service deployments from day one. The project structure has been updated to be in line with the latest Maven archetypes provided by Adobe. AEM as a Cloud Service also requires the use of Adobe deployment pipelines and Activate is fully compliant with the dispatcher configurations ready to go.

Why Cloud Service?

At a basic level, Cloud Service is a part of the Adobe Digital Foundation Package which includes AEM, Adobe Target, and Adobe Analytics. These three products combine to form a launchpad to digital maturity. It's the most logical path forward to achieving engaging, personalized experiences for your end users.

Here are some of the AEM-specific key benefits of Cloud Service as compared to the traditional Adobe managed services implementation.

  • Continuous delivery with zero downtime
  • Dynamic architecture that auto-scales
  • Deep integration to Adobe Experience Cloud
  • Monthly updates so authors can easily utilize the latest innovations
  • Simplified configuration and infrastructure for system administrators

Activate for Cloud Service includes a robust data layer and support for experience fragments.  Both of these items are key to using Adobe Analytics with Adobe Target for personalization. You are going to need personalization with your AEM site to keep pace with your competition from the beginning.

Activate will ensure the appropriate patterns and best practices are followed so that there are not drastic refactors in the future to support new business use cases. The solution is aligned with the following concepts at front of mind:

  • Accessibility
  • Analytics
  • Localization/Internationalization
  • Performance
  • Personalization
  • Security
  • Upgradability

Time to Value

So why use an accelerator? For starters, it will allow you to get to value much faster than starting with a blank slate. From our vast experience implementing AEM solutions, we know that there are some fairly standard building blocks that most sites use. For example, just about any site you visit will have a header, footer, heroes, and teasers (and other common components). This is a large part of the driving force for Adobe's decision to create WCM Core Components.

If you're interested in hearing more details about the benefits of using our Activate accelerator, please check out our "Get to the Fun Faster" webinar.

Our implementation builds upon this pattern to deliver a solution that has viable website-building capabilities on day one of the project. We've invested significant time into the offering, enhancing it along the way based on findings from real-world implementations. We don't want to wade in the kiddie pool, we want to jump into the deep end as quickly as possible, and Activate helps us achieve that for your project implementation. What are the integrations that will make the site easier to maintain for authors? What are the custom components that will increase engagement for end users?

Behind The Scenes

Since Activate was built on best practices, making it cloud compatible was a breeze. We keep a very close eye on updates related to both AEM and WCM Core Components and we keep Activate very tightly aligned with the latest and greatest.

Once the AEM maven archetype was updated to support Cloud Service, we updated our project to make similar project structure updates. At the top level of our project, some key changes were to add a repository-structure item and then break the UI packages into ui.apps, ui.config, and ui.content. Additionally, we updated our dispatcher config files structure to align with the structure Adobe has suggested. Lastly, we verified cloud service support for various ACS commons features we were using and removed any that were not supported by cloud service (On-Deploy Scripts).

Creating Digital Experiences

We strongly believe that using an accelerator is the best way to improve time to value while also reducing future cost of ownership. Offering personalized experiences that are relevant when and where your customers need to see them is becoming standard operating procedure for digital marketing today.

AEM as a Cloud Service, especially in the context of the foundation package, is Adobe's strongest offering to achieve this goal quickly and efficiently. Combining these two is the exact sort of supercharged tool your business needs to start accomplishing your digital maturity goals effectively.

If you would like to see a live demonstration of Activate in action request a demo with our team!

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