If you have both Adobe Experience Manager (AEM) and Adobe Target licenses, you have a few options of where and how you can create offers.
In my previous blog posts, I discussed how to integrate AEM with Target, both for AEM 6.4 and AEM 6.5. Now the question is when to leverage the integration and when does it make sense to use the Target interface instead.
Before attempting to answer that question, I want to discuss the differences between the three approaches.
Approach One: Target UI-Only
The way it works at a high level is that you include the Target script on your site—usually with a tag manager like Adobe Launch. The script then runs and determines which audience(s) the user is part of. Once that’s identified, and the page the user is on has a targeted experience (or "offer"), the HTML of the offer is injected into the DOM. If you’re interested, you can read more about how Adobe Target works in Adobe's documentation.
In addition to the VEC tool, you can also choose Target’s form-based composer that can handle some advanced use cases for which the visual composer does not work. For example, creating experiences and offers for delivery in emails, kiosks, and voice assistants. If you want to learn more, please check out the Adobe docs.
Approach Two: AEM UI-Only
The AEM UI-only approach makes use of Adobe Target purely via the API. It’s the integration that’s available starting with AEM 6.4 that I’ve talked about in detail in previous blog posts. This setup allows your content authors to stay within the AEM interface. They create content as they normally would and if they want to personalize a component or create a simple A/B test, they can do so through the same interface that they’re already used to.
The AEM-Target integration does have some limitations. For example, the only two activity types available right now are Experience Targeting and A/B Tests (only simple/manual ones, not ones with Auto-Allocate or Auto-Target). That means, if you want to use any of the more advanced features like Automated Personalization, Multivariate Tests, or Recommendations, you’re not going to be able to do this within the AEM interface.
You also can not target elements that are fixed within an AEM template, for example, components like the header and footer. More generally speaking, you can only target elements that your content authors can edit/move/delete on pages.