How to Implement Adobe Edge Delivery Services

Krassimir BoyanovAEM Franklin, Edge Delivery ServicesLeave a Comment

Are you losing customers because it takes too long to publish content on your website?

Your content distribution may be falling behind because of the inefficiencies of old-style content creation. Either you must go through multiple steps, slowing the process, or your content authors need to learn unfamiliar tools.

  • Do you want your technical tool experts to spend time transitioning content from the content creation format to the proper form for a web page? Probably not.
  • Do you want your content authors to have to learn HTML, JavaScript, and other technical tools to quickly publish content on your website? Probably not.

What if your content creators could use tools they already know, such as Microsoft Word and Google Docs, and have their content quickly and automatically appear on your website with minimal web developer assistance?

Adobe makes this possible with Edge Delivery Services, coupled with document-based authoring. Learn what Edge Delivery Services traditionally offers, why and how to use Edge Delivery Services with document-based authoring, and where to go for implementation help.

What Edge Delivery Services Traditionally Offers

You may have heard of Edge Delivery Services before under another name. In the past, Edge Delivery Services was known as:

  • Project Helix
  • Next-Gen Composability
  • AEM Franklin

Regardless of the name, Edge Delivery Services already works with pages, content fragments using the traditional AEM publishing method with the Page Editor and Universal Editor. Edge Delivery Services also works with GitHub and the Java Content Repository.

Traditional AEM Publishing

There are now two ways to use Edge Delivery Services.

Edge Delivery is a composable set of services that allows for a high degree of flexibility in how you author content on your website. As mentioned previously, you can use both AEM authoring and document-based authoring.

From “Getting Started with Edge Delivery Services.”

The diagram above shows the traditional AEM publishing method using the various editors, and also illustrates document-based editing as discussed below.

Configure Your Web Pages in GitHub

Edge Delivery Services leverages GitHub, allowing you to use CSS and JavaScript to develop your site’s functionality. This, coupled with the content authored by your content creators in your Microsoft and Google applications (discussed below), lets you manage both the code and content without needing a build process.

The Java Content Repository (JCR)

I discussed the JCR in a previous article, describing (among other things) how to connect, read, and query data in a standards-compliant repository.

The JCR 2.0 standard, JSR 283, specifies a vendor-independent and implementation-independent way to access content bi-directionally on a granular level within a content repository.

From JCR – Content Repository for Java Technology.

You can find additional detail on JCR in this Experience League article on web-optimized image delivery Java™ APIs, as well as this Experience League video that introduces the JCR (click “Transcript” below the video to read the contents).

You can use Edge Delivery Services to directly publish assets from your JCR, providing faster content creation and faster page speed.

Why To Use Edge Delivery Services and Document-based Authoring

Back in June, when many people were referring to the feature as AEM Franklin, I published an article that looked at its pros and cons. While I explained some drawbacks in my article, there are clear benefits to using Edge Delivery Services.

  • The main benefit is that content authors can use Adobe’s document-based authoring to create their content in applications they already know, such as Microsoft Word, Microsoft Excel, Google Docs, and Google Sheets. The content authors don’t have to learn technical functionality to publish their content, and web page designers can incorporate the content more quickly.
  • An additional benefit is that the pages created by Edge Delivery Services are very fast, achieving a near perfect Google Lighthouse score on live pages.

The result? Your authors can create content faster, and your end users can view the content faster, ensuring that your end users always have the latest information.

How to Use Edge Delivery Services and Document-based Authoring

When you use Edge Delivery Services with document-based authoring, you can employ several other Adobe Experience Manager (AEM) and other items:

Install and Use the AEM Sidekick Extension

Before you can incorporate images into your document or publish your document as a web page, you need to install the AEM Sidekick Extension (previously known as the Franklin sidekick extension or the Helix extension).

The Sidekick Extension is a browser extension compatible with all Chrome-based browsers and Safari. You can install the extension in your browser manually, or use the Sidekick Configurator. If you cannot install a browser extension, it is possible to use Sidekick via a bookmarklet.

Once you have installed the Sidekick Extension, it is ready for use. In your browser, navigate to a Microsoft document in SharePoint, a Google document, or a project preview, live, or production URL.

While using the Sidekick Extension, you can switch between preview and production mode and can make changes to your content as needed, including:

  • Edit
  • Publish
  • Reload (in preview mode only)
  • Unpublish
  • Delete

Install and Use the AEM Slack Bot

While you can paste images into a Microsoft Word or Google Docs file, you cannot paste videos into a file. Adobe has a workaround for this, the AEM Slack bot.

Once you install the Slack bot and configure it for your Slack channel and AEM project, you can use Slack commands such as “Hey @Franklinbot upload” and drag an mp4 video file into your Slack window. The AEM Slack bot will create a URL, and you can paste that URL into your Microsoft or Google document. It will become an embedded video.

This expands the capabilities of content creators to publish fully populated web pages from their favorite creation documents.

Let KBWEB Consult Help You Boost Your Web Page Authoring Productivity

As you can see, Edge Delivery Services empowers your content and website team with easy, fast, and flexible content authoring.

But it takes some technological effort to implement this capability. If you do not install and configure the resources correctly, your website will be a mess and you will not save implementation time.

But you can protect your web development process and realize the automatic benefits of Edge Delivery Services, if you enlist the right help. To ensure that you have configured all the pieces to work together, you need to work with an Adobe Certified Partner such as KBWEB Consult. You can learn more about me and about KBWEB Consult on our About Us page.

If you would like to learn how KBWEB Consult can accelerate your web page authoring, schedule a free, confidential 30-minute consultation. You can book a meeting on our Let’s Talk page.


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