Due to our portal-heritage platform, web experience management has always been a little different in Liferay DXP. At LSNA, Angelo Youn shared the latest features for building web experiences in Liferay DXP, as well as the vision for how these features will continue to evolve in 7.2 and beyond. In particular, he focused on how Liferay is better serving the needs of business users and giving them the ability to quickly create experiences without burdening IT.
To this day, IT teams in many organizations still have to spend time updating content, whether it’s creating new design components or updating the UI. The goal for WEM in Liferay DXP is to empower business users to build those experiences on their own so that IT resources can focus on new innovation that only they can deliver. At the same time, Liferay wants to provide flexible tools for developers so that they can build anything, without restrictions.
“As a front-end developer, there’s so much you have to know to work with Liferay,” said Youn. “We want to make it possible for front-end developers to come in and build experiences without having to learn any of Liferay’s standards. Instead of making them work in Liferay, we want Liferay to work for them.”
What’s New in Web Experience
Liferay DXP recently launched a new NPM build tool that allows front-end developers to create and test portlets without knowing Java or existing portlets. Documentation for this is already available. With this, development teams can ramp up new Liferay DXP projects faster because the time usually spent learning how things work in Liferay DXP is eliminated.
The 7.1 release also provides new features that make it easier for business users to create landing pages. By leveraging content pages and page fragments, developers can create flexible templates and designate exactly which areas should be editable by business users, allowing them to maintain branding control. From there, marketers or other content authors can add their text and images with inline editing that allows them to view the final content in context and ensure that it looks exactly how they want it to.
What’s Coming Next
“We want to move toward becoming a decoupled CMS,” said Youn. This means that Liferay will focus on evolving its APIs so that developers can bring together the necessary pieces of the experiences they want to build.
The greatest challenge with providing web experience management for the enterprise is balancing brand control and the tools to create unique web experiences. To tackle this, Youn is looking at ways to allow business users to build page fragments (instead of depending on developers to create them) within a pre-determined style guide, controlled by an organization’s designers. Paired with Liferay’s granular permissions, this would mean that a marketer could come into Liferay and creatively add content, without worrying that they will break anything or deliver bad design.
In addition, Youn shared that one of the main goals for the next Liferay release is to bring the Audience Targeting Application into the Liferay DXP core.
“We want Audience Targeting to be integrated with everything in Liferay,” said Youn. “It needs to be more than another portlet on the page.” He also shared plans to integrate more tightly with Liferay Analytics Cloud, which would give companies greater ability to leverage audiences and segments that they discover within their users.
Liferay’s vision for web experience management extends beyond this, to campaign management, marketing tools like A/B testing, and new features that work alongside Liferay Commerce to improve purchasing experiences. The expectations for web experiences are constantly changing, and Liferay is working closely with customers to deliver the enterprise-grade features they’ll need five and ten years from now to stay competitive in their industry.