We recently held a Zen Garden Customer Advisory Board to ensure that we are listening to our Zen Garden customers; getting the product right now and investing our time and energy into taking it in the right direction in the future.
Zen Garden users joined us from Unilever, Money Saving Expert, GSK, Robert Walters, Coutts and Hargreaves Lansdown for a morning of incredibly useful discussion that has helped us to shape our vision for the product for the year to come.
We discussed many features and future directions but there were 5 that particularly stood out for us as being important and we wanted to share these with you now.
Adobe Marketing Cloud
Whilst Zen Garden is a great solution for AEM, customer experiences these days are not built on AEM alone. We’re not currently making plans to take Zen Garden across the suite of Marketing Cloud tools, but we are helping to solve the problems that many of our clients are having when it comes to integrating this suite.
We don’t feel that these issues will be best resolved by creating Zen Garden versions for the individual tools, so we’re taking an holistic approach to the integration issue and would be happy to talk to you about any challenges that you may be experiencing.
Theme development, efficiency and performance
CAB users told us that the Creative Exchange and Themes feature works well to isolate the back and front-end, and so helps to improve overall efficiency.
However, there can be a knowledge and best practice gap within your teams when it comes to using this. This could potentially be fixed by the provision of a theme archetype that focuses on final site performance. We’ll be looking into this and will keep you updated.
Whilst we know that you are working with your own existing and various search solutions, we’re aware that a missing link in the Zen Garden toolkit is a recommended and supported solution. We’re working on this and are aiming to create an easy integration that will hopefully make search easier in future.
AMP (Accelerated Mobile Pages)
It was clear from our discussion that AMP is something that many would potentially like to use. We’re committed to investing time and resource into an AMP solution. It won’t be a separate version of Zen Garden but rather an automated overlay with basic authoring capabilities. We’ll keep you posted on progress.
At the CAB, we showcased the progress that we have made recently with Bridge, our new link between AEM and the transactional world. It was well received and so it looks like we’re moving in the right direction with this. So we’re committing to developing this capability further and will focus on middleware layer (Knot.x) and JS-based integration as priorities.
We touched on all sorts of other challenges during the CAB session and we’d like to thank our user base of attendees again for their input. These are just 5 of the most obvious and actionable issues discussed amongst many others.
As always, please feedback to us if you’d like to discuss anything else in more detail.