Event forwarding overview

NOTE

Adobe Experience Platform Launch has been rebranded as a suite of data collection technologies in Adobe Experience Platform. Several terminology changes have rolled out across the product documentation as a result. Please refer to the following document for a consolidated reference of the terminology changes.

Event forwarding in Adobe Experience Platform allows you to send collected event data to a destination for server-side processing. Event forwarding decreases web page and app weight by using Adobe Experience Platform Edge Network to execute tasks normally done on the client. Implemented in a similar manner to tags, event forwarding rules can transform and send data to new destinations, but instead of sending this data from a client application like a web browser, it is sent from Adobe’s servers.

This document provides a high-level overview of event forwarding in Platform.

Event forwarding in the data collection ecosystem

NOTE

For information on how event forwarding fits within the data collection ecosystem in Platform, see the data collection overview.

Event forwarding combined with the Adobe Experience Platform Web SDK and Mobile SDK provides the following benefits:

Performance:

  • Make a single call from a page that contains a payload of data which then federates on the server side to reduce client-side network traffic and deliver a faster experience for customers.
  • Decrease the amount of time it takes for web pages to load to improve site performance.
  • Decrease the number of required client-side technologies to deliver your experience and send data to many destinations.

Data governance:

  • Increase transparency and control over which data is sent where across all properties.

Differences between event forwarding and tags

In terms of configuration, event forwarding uses many of the same concepts as tags, such as rules, data elements, and extensions. The main difference between the two can be summarized as follows:

  • Tags collects event data from a website or native mobile application and sends it to Platform Edge Network.
  • Event forwarding sends incoming event data from Platform Edge Network to an endpoint which represents a final destination or an endpoint that provides data that you want to enrich the original payload with.

While tags collects event data directly from your site or native mobile application using the Platform Web and Mobile SDKs, event forwarding requires event data to already be sent through Platform Edge Network in order to forward it to destinations. In other words, you must implement the Platform Web or Mobile SDK on your digital property (either through tags or using raw code) in order to use event forwarding.

Properties

Event forwarding maintains its own store of properties separate from tags, which you can view in the Data Collection UI by selecting Event Forwarding in the left navigation.

Event forwarding properties in the Data Collection UI

All event forwarding properties list Edge as their platform. They do not distinguish between web or mobile because they only process data received from Platform Edge Network, which itself can receive event data from both web and mobile platforms.

Extensions

Event forwarding has its own catalog of compatible extensions, such as the Core extension and Adobe Cloud Connector extension. You can view the available extensions for event forwarding properties in the UI by selecting Extensions in the left navigation, followed by Catalog.

Event forwarding extensions in the Data Collection UI

Data elements

The types of data elements that are available in event forwarding are limited to the catalog of compatible extensions that provide them.

While data elements themselves are created and configured the same way in event forwarding as they are for tags, there are some important syntax differences when it comes to how they reference data from Platform Edge Network.

Referencing data from Platform Edge Network

To reference data from Platform Edge Network, you must create a data element that provides a valid path to that data. When creating the data element in the UI, select Core for the extension and Path for the type.

The Path value for the data element must follow the pattern arc.event.{ELEMENT} (for example: arc.event.xdm.web.webPageDetails.URL). This path must be specified correctly in order for data to be sent.

Example of a path type data element for event forwarding

Rules

Creating rules in event forwarding properties works in a similar way to tags, with the key difference being that you cannot select events as rule components. Instead, an event forwarding rule processes all events it receives from the datastream and forwards those events to destinations if certain conditions are satisfied.

Event forwarding rules in the Data Collection UI

Data element tokenization

In tag rules, data elements are tokenized with a % at the beginning and end of the data element name (for example: %viewportHeight%). In event forwarding rules, data elements are instead tokenized with {{ at the beginning and }} at the end of the data element name (for example: {{viewportHeight}}).

Example of a path type data element for event forwarding

Sequence of rule actions

The Actions section of an event forwarding rule is always executed sequentially. Make sure the order of actions is correct when you save a rule. This execution sequence cannot be executed asynchronously like it can with tags.

Secrets

Event forwarding allows you to create, manage, and store secrets that can be used to authenticate to the servers that you are sending data to. See the guide on secrets on the different kinds of available secret types and how they are implemented in the UI.

Next steps

This document provided a high-level introduction to event forwarding. For more information on how to set up this feature for your organization, see the getting started guide.

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