When to use Play or Preview mode?

Last Updated October 3, 2019

Issue: What is the difference between Play vs Preview mode, and when does it make sense to use one over the other?

Solution: Play and Preview mode are two simulation environments that can be initiated from the WalkMe Editor. Content does not need to be published to use Play or Preview.

What’s the Difference between Play and Preview?

“Play” mode is the mode that is automatically active when the WalkMe Editor is open. When you “play” a step or other WalkMe deployable directly from the Editor, you are viewing the Editor’s “Play” mode.

“Preview” is an environment that more accurately simulates how WalkMe deployables will behave in a “published” environment. Preview is not activated by default, but can be accessed by clicking the “Preview” button from the Editor’s navigation menu, or by selecting specific items and clicking “Preview”.

Preview Mode:

Selective Preview: 

When to use Play mode?

Play mode can be useful if you’re just trying to see how the WalkMe item will appear on the page. For example, if you created a Launcher and wanted to make sure it attaches to the right element, you can click “Play” to see how the Launcher would appear if it were published. Play mode does not take into account segmentation or autoplay rules, so it can be useful if you are just trying to see how the content would appear to an end-user without having to meet the specific situational logic. 

Note that only one WalkMe item can be tested in “Play” mode at a time. Play mode is not recommended for testing WalkMe items that are connected to other WalkMe items (such as launching a Smart Walk-Thru from a Launcher, or a Resource from a ShoutOut).

When to use Preview mode?

Preview mode is most useful when you are:

  • Testing multiple WalkMe items at once
  • Testing the segmentation or autoplay rules applied to your content. 
  • Testing how content will appear in the published environment 

Preview mode can be activated by selecting “Preview” from the Editor Menu and will simulate a “published” environment. In Preview mode, all non-archived WalkMe items will be active and displayed by default (though their appearance will abide by their segmentation/auto-play rules). The Player Menu is also available in Preview mode, whereas it is not in Play mode.

If you’d like to only view specific content in Preview mode (as opposed to having the entire content of your Editor account play at once), you can use “Selective Preview” to select one or multiple items to appear in the “Preview” environment. Please note that if you are trying to view the behavior of a Launcher (or ShoutOut, or any WalkMe deployable that links to another deployable), you will also need to select its attached WalkMe deployable for Preview.

Note that content that has been archived in Production will not appear in Preview mode. If you’d like to see content in Preview mode, make sure it is at least marked with “draft” status like so: 

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