Track events

To send event data to Adobe Experience Cloud, use the sendEvent command. The sendEvent command is the primary way to send data to the Experience Cloud, and to retrieve personalized content, identities, and audience destinations.

Data sent to Adobe Experience Cloud falls into two categories:

  • XDM data
  • Non-XDM data (currently unsupported)

Sending XDM data

XDM data is an object whose content and structure matches a schema you have created within Adobe Experience Platform. Learn more about how to create a schema.

Any XDM data that you would like to be part of your analytics, personalization, audiences, or destinations should be sent using the xdm option.

alloy("sendEvent", {
  "xdm": {
    "commerce": {
      "order": {
        "purchaseID": "a8g784hjq1mnp3",
        "purchaseOrderNumber": "VAU3123",
        "currencyCode": "USD",
        "priceTotal": 999.98
      }
    }
  }
});

Some time may pass between when the sendEvent command is executed and when the data is sent to the server (for example, if the Web SDK library has not fully loaded or consent has not yet been received). If you intend to modify any part of the xdm object after executing the sendEvent command, it is highly recommended that you clone the xdm object before executing the sendEvent command. For example:

var clone = function(value) {
  return JSON.parse(JSON.stringify(value));
};

var dataLayer = {
  "commerce": {
    "order": {
      "purchaseID": "a8g784hjq1mnp3",
      "purchaseOrderNumber": "VAU3123",
      "currencyCode": "USD",
      "priceTotal": 999.98
    }
  }
};

alloy("sendEvent", {
  "xdm": clone(dataLayer)
});

// This change will not be reflected in the data sent to the 
// server for the prior sendEvent command.
dataLayer.commerce = null;

In this example, the data layer is cloned by serializing it to JSON, then deserializing it. Next, the cloned result is passed into the sendEvent command. Doing so ensures that the sendEvent command has a snapshot of the data layer as it existed when the sendEvent command was executed so that later modifications to the original data layer object will not be reflected in the data sent to the server. If you are using an event-driven data layer, cloning your data is likely already handled automatically. For example, if you are using the Adobe Client Data Layer, the getState() method provides a computed, cloned snapshot of all prior changes. This is also handled for you automatically if you are using the Adobe Experience Platform Web SDK extension in Adobe Experience Platform Launch.

NOTE

There is a 32 KB limit on the data that can be sent in each event in the XDM field.

Sending non-XDM data

Currently, sending data that does not match an XDM schema is unsupported. Support is planned for a future date.

Setting eventType

In an XDM experience event, there is an optional eventType field. This holds the primary event type for the record. Setting an event type can help you differentiate between the different events you will be sending in. XDM provides several predefined event types that you can use or you always create your own custom event types for your use cases. Below is a list of all the predefined event types provided by XDM. Read more in the XDM public repo.

Event Type: Definition:
advertising.completes Indicates if a timed media asset was watched to completion - this does not necessarily mean the viewer watched the whole video; viewer could have skipped ahead
advertising.timePlayed Describes the amount of time spent by a user on a specific timed media asset
advertising.federated Indicates if an experience event was created through data federation (data sharing between customers
advertising.clicks Click(s) actions on an advertisement
advertising.conversions A customer pre-defined action(s) which triggers an event for performance evaluation
advertising.firstQuartiles A digital video ad has played through 25% of its duration at normal speed
advertising.impressions Impression(s) of an advertisement to an end-user with the potential of being viewed
advertising.midpoints A digital video ad has played through 50% of its duration at normal speed
advertising.starts A digital video ad has started playing
advertising.thirdQuartiles A digital video ad has played through 75% of its duration at normal speed
web.webpagedetails.pageViews View(s) of a webpage has occurred
web.webinteraction.linkClicks Click of a web-link has occurred
commerce.checkouts An action during a checkout process of a product list, there can be more than one checkout event if there are multiple steps in a checkout process. If there are multiple steps the event time information and referenced page or experience is used to identify the step individual events represent in order
commerce.productListAdds Addition of a product to the product list. Example a product is added to a shopping cart
commerce.productListOpens Initializations of a new product list. Example a shopping cart is created
commerce.productListRemovals Removal(s) of a product entry from a product list. Example a product is removed from a shopping cart
commerce.productListReopens A product list that was no longer accessible(abandoned) has been re-activated by the user. Example via a re-marketing activity
commerce.productListViews View(s) of a product-list has occurred
commerce.productViews View(s) of a product have occurred
commerce.purchases An order has been accepted. Purchase is the only required action in a commerce conversion. Purchase must have a product list referenced
commerce.saveForLaters Product list is saved for future use. Example a product wish list
delivery.feedback Feedback events for a delivery. Example feedback events for an email delivery

These event types will be shown in a dropdown if using the Adobe Experience Platform Launch extension or you can always pass them in without Experience Platform Launch. They can be passed in as part of the xdm option.

alloy("sendEvent", {
  "xdm": {
    "eventType": "commerce.purchases",
    "commerce": {
      "order": {
        "purchaseID": "a8g784hjq1mnp3",
        "purchaseOrderNumber": "VAU3123",
        "currencyCode": "USD",
        "priceTotal": 999.98
      }
    }
  }
});

Alternatively, the eventType can be passed into the event command using the type option. Behind the scenes, this is added to the XDM data. Having the type as an option allows you to more easily set the eventType without having to modify the XDM payload.

var myXDMData = { ... };

alloy("sendEvent", {
  "xdm": myXDMData,
  "type": "commerce.purchases"
});

Overriding the dataset ID

In some use cases, you might want to send an event to a dataset other than the one configured in the Configuration UI. For that you need to set the datasetId option on the sendEvent command:

var myXDMData = { ... };

alloy("sendEvent", {
  "xdm": myXDMData,
  "type": "commerce.checkout",
  "datasetId": "YOUR_DATASET_ID"
});

Adding identity information

Custom identity information can also be added to the event. See Retrieving Experience Cloud ID.

Using the sendBeacon API

It can be tricky to send event data just before the web page user has navigated away. If the request takes too long, the browser might cancel the request. Some browsers have implemented a web standard API called sendBeacon to allow data to be more easily collected during this time. When using sendBeacon, the browser makes the web request in the global browsing context. This means the browser makes the beacon request in the background and does not hold up the page navigation. To tell Adobe Experience Platform Web SDK to use sendBeacon, add the option "documentUnloading": true to the event command. Here is an example:

alloy("sendEvent", {
  "documentUnloading": true,
  "xdm": {
    "commerce": {
      "order": {
        "purchaseID": "a8g784hjq1mnp3",
        "purchaseOrderNumber": "VAU3123",
        "currencyCode": "USD",
        "priceTotal": 999.98
      }
    }
  }
});

Browsers have imposed limits to the amount of data that can be sent with sendBeacon at one time. In many browsers, the limit is 64K. If the browser rejects the event because the payload is too large, Adobe Experience Platform Web SDK falls back to using its normal transport method (for example, fetch).

Handling responses from events

If you want to handle a response from an event, you can be notified of a success or failure as follows:

alloy("sendEvent", {
  "renderDecisions": true,
  "xdm": {
    "commerce": {
      "order": {
        "purchaseID": "a8g784hjq1mnp3",
        "purchaseOrderNumber": "VAU3123",
        "currencyCode": "USD",
        "priceTotal": 999.98
      }
    }
  }
}).then(function(results) {
    // Tracking the event succeeded.
  })
  .catch(function(error) {
    // Tracking the event failed.
  });

Modifying events globally

If you want to add, remove, or modify fields from the event globally, you can configure an onBeforeEventSend callback. This callback is called every time an event is sent. This callback is passed in an event object with an xdm field. Modify event.xdm to change the data that is sent in the event.

alloy("configure", {
  "edgeConfigId": "ebebf826-a01f-4458-8cec-ef61de241c93",
  "orgId": "ADB3LETTERSANDNUMBERS@AdobeOrg",
  "onBeforeEventSend": function(event) {
    // Change existing values
    event.xdm.web.webPageDetails.URL = xdm.web.webPageDetails.URL.toLowerCase();
    // Remove existing values
    delete event.xdm.web.webReferrer.URL;
    // Or add new values
    event.xdm._adb3lettersandnumbers.mycustomkey = "value";
  }
});

xdm fields are set in this order:

  1. Values passed in as options to the event command alloy("sendEvent", { xdm: ... });
  2. Automatically collected values. (See Automatic Information.)
  3. The changes made in the onBeforeEventSend callback.

If the onBeforeEventSend callback throws an exception, the event is still sent; however, none of the changes that were made inside the callback are applied to the final event.

Potential actionable errors

When sending an event, an error might be thrown if the data being sent is too large (over 32KB for the full request). In this case, you need to reduce the amount of data being sent.

When debugging is enabled, the server synchronously validates event data being sent against the configured XDM schema. If the data does not match the schema, details about the mismatch are returned from the server and an error is thrown. In this case, modify the data to match the schema. When debugging is not enabled, the server validates data asynchronously and, therefore, no corresponding error is thrown.

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