Segment Builder UI guide

This guide explains how to create audiences through segment definitions using the Segment Builder. To learn how to create audiences using Audience Composition, please read the Audience Composition UI guide.

Segment Builder provides a rich workspace that allows you to interact with Profile data elements. The workspace provides intuitive controls for building and editing rules, such as drag-and-drop tiles used to represent data properties.

The Segment Builder UI is displayed.

Segment definition building blocks building-blocks

The basic building blocks of segment definitions are attributes and events. In addition, the attributes and events contained in existing audiences can be used as components for new definitions.

You can see these building blocks in the Fields section on the left side of the Segment Builder workspace. Fields contains a tab for each of the main building blocks: “Attributes”, “Events”, and “Audiences”.

The fields section of the Segment Builder is highlighted.


The Attributes tab allows you to browse Profile attributes belonging to the XDM Individual Profile class. Each folder can be expanded to reveal additional attributes, where each attribute is a tile that can be dragged onto the rule builder canvas in the center of the workspace. The rule builder canvas is discussed in more detail later in this guide.

The attributes section of the Segment Builder fields is highlighted.


The Events tab allows you to create an audience based on events or actions that took place using XDM ExperienceEvent data elements. You can also find Event Types on the Events tab, which are a collection of commonly used events to enable you to create your segment definitions more quickly.

In addition to being able to browse for ExperienceEvent elements, you can also search for Event Types. Event Types use the same coding logic as ExperienceEvents, without requiring you to search through the XDM ExperienceEvent class looking for the correct event. For example, using the search bar to search “cart” returns the Event Types “AddCart” and “RemoveCart”, which are two very commonly used cart actions when building segment definitions.

Any type of component can be searched for by typing its name in the search bar, which uses Lucene’s search syntax. The search results begin to populate as entire words are entered. For example, to build a rule based on the XDM field ExperienceEvent.commerce.productViews, start typing “product views” in the search field. Once the word “product” has been typed, search results begin to appear. Each result includes the object hierarchy to which it belongs.

Custom schema fields defined by your organization may take up to 24 hours to appear and become available for use in building rules.

You can then easily drag and drop ExperienceEvents and “Event Types” into your segment definition.

The events section of the Segment Builder UI is highlighted.

By default, only populated schema fields from your data store are shown. This includes “Event Types”. If the “Event Types” list is not visible, or you are only able to select “Any” as an “Event Type”, select the gear icon next to Fields, then select Show full XDM schema under Available Fields. Select the gear icon again to return to the Fields tab and you should now be able to view multiple “Event Types” and schema fields, regardless of whether they contain data or not.

Radio buttons that let you choose between only showing fields with data or showing all XDM fields are highlighted.

Adobe Analytics report suite datasets

You can use data from either a single or multiple Adobe Analytics report suites as events within segmentation.

When using data from a single Analytics report suite, Platform will automatically add descriptors and friendly names to eVars, making it easier to find those fields within Segment Builder.

An image showing how generic variables (eVars) are mapped with a user friendly name.

When using data from multiple Analytics report suites, Platform cannot automatically add descriptors or friendly names to eVars. As a result, before using the data from Analytics report suites, you must map to XDM fields. More information about mapping Analytics variables to XDM can be found in the Adobe Analytics source connection guide.

For example, consider a situation where you had two report suites with the following variables:

Report Suite Schema A
Report Suite Schema B
Referring Domain
Logged in Y/N
Page Name
Member Loyalty ID
Page Name
Search Terms
Product Name
Page Views
Page Views
Cart Additions
Cart Additions

In this case, you could map the two report suites with the following schema:

An image showing how two report suites can be mapped into one union schema.

While the generic eVar values still get populated, you should not use them in your segment definitions (if possible), since the values could mean different things than what they were originally in their reports.

Once the report suites have been mapped, you can use these newly mapped fields within your Profile-related workflows and segmentation.

Union Schema experience
Segmentation generic variable
Segmentation mapped variable
Single report suite
Friendly name descriptor is included with generic variables.

Example: Page Name (eVar2)
  • Friendly name descriptor included with generic variables
  • Queries use data from the specific dataset, since it is the only one
Queries can use Adobe Analytics data and potentially other sources.
Multiple report suites
No friendly name descriptors are included with generic variables.

Example: eVar2
  • Any field with multiple descriptors appear as generic. This means that no friendly names appear in the UI.
  • Queries can use data from any datasets that contain the eVar, which may result in mixed or incorrect results.
Queries use correctly combined results from multiple datasets.


For audiences created within Platform, only audiences that have the same merge policy will be displayed.

The Audiences tab lists all audiences imported from external sources, such as Adobe Audience Manager or Customer Journey Analytics, as well as audiences created within Experience Platform.

On the Audiences tab, you can see all of the available sources as a group of folders. As you select the folders, available sub-folders and audiences can be seen. Additionally, you can select the folder icon (as shown in the far-right image) in order to view the folder structure (a check mark denotes the folder you are currently in) and easily navigate back through folders by selecting the name of a folder in the tree.

You can hover over the ⓘ next to an audience to view information about the audience including its ID, description, and the folder hierarchy to locate the audience.

An image demonstrating how the folder hierarchy works for audiences.

You can also search for audiences using the search bar, which utilizes Lucene’s search syntax. On the Audiences tab, selecting a top-level folder causes the search bar to appear, allowing you to search within that folder. Search results only begin to populate once entire words are entered. For example, to find an audience named Online Shoppers, start typing “Online” in the search bar. Once the word “Online” has been typed in full, search results containing the word “Online” appear.

Rule builder canvas rule-builder-canvas

As of the June 2024 release, the “This month” and the “This year” time constraints represent “month-to-date” and “year-to-date” respectively. For example, if you created an audience on July 18th looking for “all customers whose birthday occurs this month”, the audience would get all customers whose birthdays occurred from July 1st to July 31st. On August 1st, this audience would get all customers whose birthday occurs from August 1st to August 31st.
Previously, “This month” and “this year” represented 30 days and 365 days respectively, which failed to account for months with 31 days and leap years.
In order to update your audiences’ logic, please re-save your previously created audiences.

A segment definition is a collection of rules used to describe key characteristics or behavior of a target audience. These rules are created using the rule builder canvas, located in the center of Segment Builder.

To add a new rule to your segment definition, drag a tile from the Fields tab and drop it onto the rule builder canvas. You will then be presented with context-specific options according to the type of data being added. Available data types include: strings, dates, ExperienceEvents, “Event Types”, and audiences.

The blank rule builder canvas.

The latest changes to Adobe Experience Platform have updated the usage of the OR and AND logical operators between events. These updates will not affect existing segment definitions. However, all subsequent updates to existing segment definitions and newly created segment definitions will be affected by these changes. Please read the time constants update for more information.

When selecting a value for the attribute, you will see a list of enum values that the attribute can be.

An image that shows the list of enum values that an attribute can be.

If selecting a value from this list of enums, the value will be outlined with a solid border. However, for fields that use meta:enum (soft) enums, you can also select a value which is not from the list of enums. If you create your own value, it will be outlined with a dotted border, along with a warning that this value is not in the enum list.

A warning that is displayed if you are inserting a value that is not part of the enum list.

If you are creating multiple values, you can add all of them at once by using the bulk upload. Select the plus icon to show the Add values in bulk popover.

The plus icon is highlighted, showing the button that you can select to access the bulk upload popover.

On the Add values in bulk popover, you can upload a CSV or TSV file.

The Add values in bulk popover is displayed. The dialog you can select to upload a CSV or TSV file is highlighted.

Alternatively, you can manually add comma separated values.

The Add values in bulk popover is displayed. Both the dialog you can use to insert values and the added values are highlighted.

Please note that there is a maximum of 250 values allowed. If you exceed this amount, you will need to remove some values before adding more.

A warning that shows that you have reached the maximum number of values is displayed.

Adding audiences

You can drag and drop an audience from the Audience tab onto the rule builder canvas to reference audience membership in the new segment definition. This allows you to include or exclude audience membership as an attribute in the new segment definition rules.

For Platform audiences created using Segment Builder, you are given the option to convert the audience into the set of rules that were used in the segment definition for that audience. This conversion makes a copy of the rule logic, that can then be modified without affecting the original segment definition. Make sure that you have saved any recent changes to your segment definition before converting it to rule logic.

When adding an audience from an external source, only the audience membership is referenced. You cannot convert the audience to rules, and therefore the rules used to create the original audience cannot be modified in the new segment definition.

This image shows how to convert an audience attribute to rules.

If any conflicts arise when convert audiences to rules, Segment Builder will attempt to preserve the existing options to the best of its ability.

Code view

Alternatively, you can view a code-based version of a rule created in the Segment Builder. Once you have created your rule within the rule builder canvas, you can select Code view to see your segment definition as PQL.

The code view button is highlighted, which allows you to see the segment definition as PQL.

Code view provides a button that allows you to copy the value of the segment definition to use in API calls. To get the latest version of the segment definition, make sure you have saved your latest changes to the segment definition.

The copy code button is highlighted, which allows you to

Aggregation functions

An aggregation in Segment Builder is a calculation on a group of XDM attributes whose data type is a number (either a double or an integer). The four supported aggregation functions within Segment Builder are SUM, AVERAGE, MIN, and MAX.

To create an aggregation function, select an event from the left rail, and insert it into the Events container.

The events section is highlighted.

After placing the event within the Events container, select the ellipses icon (…), followed by Aggregate.

The aggregate text is highlighted. Selecting this lets you select aggregation functions.

The aggregation is now added. You can now select the aggregation function, choose what attribute to aggregate, the equality function, as well as the value. For the example below, this segment definition would qualify any profile that has a sum of purchased values that is greater than $100, even if each individual purchase is less than $100.

The event rules, which displays an aggregation function.

Count functions count-functions

Count functions in Segment Builder are used to look for specified events and count the number of times they’re done. The supported count functions in Segment Builder are “At least”, “At most”, “Exactly”, “Between”, and “All”.

To create a count function, select an event from the left rail and insert it into the Events container.

The events fields are highlighted.

After placing the event within the Events container, select the At least 1 button.

The At least is highlighted, showing the area to select to see a full list of count functions.

The count function is now added. You can now select the count function and the value of the function. The example below would be to include any event that has at least one click.

A list of the count functions is displayed and highlighted.


Segment rules are evaluated in the order they are listed. Containers allow control over the order of execution through the use of nested queries.

Once you have added at least one tile to the rule builder canvas, you can begin to add containers. To create a new container, select the ellipses (…) in the top-right corner of the tile, then select Add container.

The add container button is highlighted, which lets you add a container as a child of the first container.

A new container appears as the child of the first container, but you can adjust the hierarchy by dragging and moving the containers. The default behavior of a container is to “Include” the attribute, event, or audience provided. You can set the rule to “Exclude” profiles that match the container criteria by selecting Include in the top-left corner of the tile and selecting “Exclude”.

A child container can also be extracted and added inline to the parent container by selecting “unwrap container” on the child container. Select the ellipses (…) in the top-right corner of the child container to access this option.

Options that let you unwrap or delete the container are highlighted.

Once you select Unwrap container the child container is removed and the criteria appear inline.

When unwrapping containers, be careful that the logic continues to meet the desired segment definition.

The container is shown after being unwrapped.

Merge policies

Experience Platform enables you to bring data together from multiple sources and combine it in order to see a complete view of each of your individual customers. When bringing this data together, merge policies are the rules that Platform uses to determine how data will be prioritized and what data will be combined to create a profile.

You can select a merge policy that matches your marketing purpose for this audience or use the default merge policy provided by Platform. You can create multiple merge policies unique to your organization, including creating your own default merge policy. For step-by-step instructions on creating merge policies for your organization, please begin by reading the merge policies overview.

To select a merge policy for your segment definition, select the gear icon on the Fields tab, then use the Merge Policy dropdown menu to select the merge policy that you wish to use.

The merge policy selector is highlighted. This lets you choose which merge policy to select for your segment definition.

Segment definition properties segment-properties

When building a segment definition, the Audience properties section on the right-hand side of the workspace displays an estimate of the size of the resulting segment definition, allowing you to adjust your segment definition as needed before building the audience itself.

Qualified Profiles indicates the actual number of profiles that match the segment definition’s rules. This number updates every 24 hours, after the segment evaluation job has ran.

The timestamp for qualified profiles indicates the most recent batch segment evaluation job and is not displayed for segment definitions evaluated using streaming or edge segmentation. If you edit the segment definition, the number of qualified profiles will remain the same until the next segment evaluation job is run.

Estimated Profiles indicates an approximate number of profiles based off of the sample job. You can see an updated version of this value after adding the new rules or conditions and selecting Refresh estimate. Selecting the information bubble gives the error threshold and most recent sample job time.

Qualified Profiles and Estimated Profiles are highlighted within the Audience properties section.

The Audience properties section is also where you can specify important information about your segment definition, including its name, description, and evaluation type. Segment definition names are used to identify your segment definition among those defined by your organization and should therefore be descriptive, concise, and unique.

As you continue to build your segment definition, you can view a paginated preview of the audience by selecting View Profiles.

The segment definition properties section is highlighted. The segment definition properties include, but are not limited to, the segment definition name, description, and evaluation method.

Audience estimates are generated by using a sample size of that day’s sample data. If there are less than 1 million entities in your Profile store, the full data set is used; for between 1 and 20 million entities, 1 million entities are used; and for over 20 million entities, 5% of the total entities are used.
Additionally, this estimate is based off of when the last profile sample job was run. This means that if you’re using a relative date function such as “Today” or “This week”, the estimate will base its calculations off of the last profile sample job run time. For example, if today is January 24th and the last profile sample job ran on January 22nd, the “Yesterday” relative date function will be based off of January 21st, and not January 23rd.
More information about generating estimates for segment definitions can be found in the estimate generation section of the segment definition creation tutorial.

You can also select your evaluation method. If you know what evaluation method you want to use, you can select the desired evaluation method either using the dropdown list. If you want to know what evaluation types this segment definition qualifies for, you can select the browse icon folder icon with a magnifying glass to see a list of the available segment definition evaluation methods.

The Evaluation method eligibility popover appears. This popover displays the available evaluation methods, which are batch, streaming, and edge. The popover shows which evaluation methods are eligible and ineligible. Depending on the parameters you used in your segment definition, it may not qualify for certain evaluation methods. For more information on the requirements for each evaluation method, please read the streaming segmentation or the edge segmentation overviews.

You can also change the evaluation method of the segment definition after you’ve finished creating it. If you change the evaluation method from Edge or Streaming to Batch, you will not be able to change it back to Edge or Streaming. The change to the evaluation method will only take effect once you select Save in the popover. Cancelling the dialog will maintain the original evaluation method.

The evaluation method eligibility pop up appears. This displays which methods of evaluation are eligible and ineligible for the segment definition.

If you select an invalid evaluation method, you will be prompted to either change your segment definition rules or change the evaluation method.

The evaluation method pop up. If an ineligible evaluation method is selected, the pop up explains why it is ineligible.

More information about the different segment definition evaluation methods can be found in the segmentation overview.

Next steps next-steps

Segment Builder provides a rich workflow allowing you to isolate marketable audiences from Real-Time Customer Profile data. After reading this guide you should now be able to:

  • Create segment definitions using a combination of attributes, events, and existing audiences as building blocks.
  • Use the rule builder canvas and containers to control the order in which segment rules are executed.
  • View estimates of your prospective audience, allowing you to adjust your segment definitions as required.
  • Enable all segment definitions for scheduled segmentation.
  • Enable specified segment definitions for streaming segmentation.

To learn more about Segmentation Service, please continue reading the documentation and supplement your learning by watching the related videos. To learn more about the other parts of the Segmentation Service UI, please read the Segmentation Service user guide