How Sitecore profiles, profile keys, profile cards, and pattern cards are used

Posted 06/10/2020 by Sana Kamalmaz

In our previous post, we explained what Sitecore profiles, profile keys, profile cards, and pattern cards are. Let’s walk through a simple example that shows how they are used. We won’t go into the details of how to actually create them in Sitecore; that’s a topic for another post. The goal here is to understand the concept and terminology. We’ll use the example we briefly mentioned in the previous post.

We’re an organization serving a wide audience that includes people inserted in buying, renting, and developing property, and they have different needs based on their interest. We’d like to profile our content based on the interests of our target audience. To do that we’ll create the Interest profile.

Now, what are the different interests of our audience groups? Buying, renting, and developing, right? Then, we’ll create these profile keys under the Interest profile. 

We think the maximum amount a contact should be able to score against each of those areas of interest is 100. So, we’ll log 0 as the minimum and 100 as the maximum value points for each of the profile keys.

Now, how do we tell Sitecore to track the behavior of contacts and score each of them on their interest in buying, renting, and developing? We do that by creating the following profile cards:

  • For buyers: a profile card that gives the contact 10 points in ‘buying’ when they view content associated with the card
  • For renters: a profile card that gives the contact 10 points in ‘renting’ when they view content associated with the card
  • For developer: a profile card that gives the contact 10 points in ‘developing’ when they view content associated with the card
  • 50/50 buyers and renters: a profile cards that gives contacts 5 points in ‘buyers’ and 5 in ‘renters’ when they view content

Now that we have our profile cards ready, we’ll go through our content and assign each content piece a profile card. Once we do that, when a contact views any piece of content, Sitecore will give the contact a score on each of the areas of interest.

What do we get out of this? We can use it to personalize and push relevant content to the users. For example, we could show content about development and renovation to users who score high on ‘developing’.

We can do that by creating a personalization rule: “where the value of the specific developing profile key in the interaction profile compares to specific value  20

Or, we can create a pattern card: ‘Dave the developer’ and make the matching criteria ‘the contact has to score at least 20 points on Developing to be matched with this card’.

And there you have it. A simple example of how Sitecore profiles, profile keys, profile cards, and pattern cards are used. It is understood best when applied, so go ahead and try it. And if you have any questions, feel free to ask below.