Skip to main content

Content Delivery


Overview of the part that the Sitecore Content Delivery role plays in delivering personalized content and experiences.

A key part of Experience Manager (XM) is the delivery of personalized content and experiences to visitors. The Content Delivery (CD) role is the front end of this operation, and it draws on databases and indexes for scaling and security.

The main purpose of the Content Delivery role is to power the experience for visitors across all channels. This includes delivering rendered, personalized content to visitors on websites and apps and other media.

There are three roles and an index involved in the delivery of content to visitors:

  • The Content Delivery role

  • The Core database

  • The Web database

  • The Web index

When a visitor accesses the Content Delivery role with a browser or a mobile app, the CD role reads content and media from the Web database and returns a page to the visitor. The business logic running on the Content Delivery role can also access the Sitecore Content Search API that uses the Web index for fast, query-based retrieval of content.

The Sitecore rendering engine uses business and optionally the Sitecore Content Search API to create personalized content.

The Content Delivery role needs access to the Core database storage role for state information and event queues. In addition, the default extranet security domain uses the Core database to store ASP.NET membership data for security users and roles used for authentication and authorization on the public channels. You can scale out the ASP.NET membership database for performance or security reasons.

The Sitecore Content Delivery role needs access to the Core database. ASP.NET membership data can be scaled out for performance or security reasons.

The Sitecore security architecture is flexible, and you can plug in other authentication providers to accommodate scale and performance.

For scenarios with heavy traffic or for failover reasons, you can scale out the Content Delivery role across multiple servers or cloud services to form a cluster. You can also scale out across multiple data centers or geographical locations to reduce website latency. In this scenario, we recommended you to host a Web database and Core database in each data center in order to reduce latency between the Content Delivery roles and the databases.

Refer to the Architecture and roles documentation for privacy and security considerations for each role on the processing and aggregation data flow.