WebCenter Customer Spotlight: Ancestry.com

Author: Peter Reiser - Social Business Evangelist, Oracle WebCenter

 Solution Summary

Ancestry.com Inc is the largest for-profit genealogy company in the world and it operates a network of genealogical and historical record websites focused on the U.S. and nine foreign countries, develops and markets genealogical software, and offers a wide array of genealogical related services. As of June 2012, the company provided access to more than 10 billion records, 38 million family trees, and 2 million paying subscribers.

Their main business challenges were to improve time to market and agility to respond quickly to fast changing Internet waves while integrating with their existing content (4 PetaByte) and legacy systems.

Ancestry.com implemented Oracle WebCenter Sites as their Web Experience Management System for their landing pages and marketing micro sites, added dynamic sections to their existing websites and integrated the existing content and legacy systems through web services.

The Ancestry.com landing pages and marketing sites are now managed by the business team without any involvement of engineering resources. Managed content can quickly be added to existing pages without having to refactor the whole page and existing content (4 PetaBytes)  is now served trough Oracle WebCenter Sites without having to migrate from existing systems.


Company Overview
Ancestry.com Inc is a publicly traded Internet company (NASDAQ: ACOM) based in Provo, Utah, USA. The largest for-profit genealogy company in the world, it operates a network of genealogical and historical record websites focused on the U.S. and nine foreign countries, develops and markets genealogical software, and offers a wide array of genealogical related services. As of June 2012, the company provided access to more than 10 billion records, 38 million family trees, and 2 million paying subscribers.

Business Challenges
Ancestry main business challenge was to respond quickly to fast changing Internet waves.  Product marketing could not change Web site content without going through development. They needed dedicated developers just to support their marketing efforts.

Technical Requirements

  • Support current systems and environments - ASP.NET, MVC.NET, Java, JSP, PHP
  • Scalable and manageable for a world wide network

Marketing Requirements

  • Easy to enter content – Without having a degree in HTML
  • Scheduling of content – When is content visible to users

Product Requirements

  • Easy to manage content – See when content is out-of-date
  • Rotation of content – Producing new content as old content expires
Solution Deployed
Ancestry implemented  Oracle WebCenter Sites as their Web Experience Management System to manage their landing pages and marketing micro sites. This sites are fully managed by their business team without involvement of any engineering resources.


The integration with their existing Web sites is done through Spot Management which allows the ability to add dynamic content to certain sections of a web page. The dynamic content is managed by  Oracle WebCenter Sites.

The integration with the existing content (4 PetaBytes!) is done trough  a custom content provider interface which allows to mix existing content with content from  Oracle WebCenter Sites.


Business Results
Ancestry.com has achieved following impressive business results:

  • Landing pages and marketing sites are now managed by the business team without any involvement of engineering resources
  • Managed content can quickly be added to existing pages without having to refactor the whole page
  • Provide access to existing content (4 PetaBytes)  without having to migrate from existing systems

Additional Information
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Oracle WebCenter is the center of engagement for business—powering exceptional experiences for customers, partners, and employees. It connects people, process, and information with the most complete portfolio of portal, Web experience management, content, imaging and collaboration technologies.

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