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Previewing a Store Before Launch

All BigCommerce stores are set to private when first created. This keeps search engines from finding and listing your store in search results while it is still in development, and it prevents the public from browsing your store before it is ready to launch. However, you can still preview your store or allow others to do so as well.

If you're interested in previewing a premium theme with your products, check out The BigCommerce Theme Marketplace.


What if I've launched my store already? Stores that have already launched can be placed in maintenance mode, allowing you to make updates and preview your changes before making them public. If you need to return your store to a prelaunch status, reach out to our 24/7 Support team for assistance.


Previewing for Store Owners and Administrators

If you are logged into your control panel as Store Owner, you can click View Store in the upper left corner of the control panel.

View Store

If you've connected your store to multiple channels like WordPress, click View Storefronts to select which storefront to view.

Example of the view storefronts link in the BigCommerce dashboard

Your storefront will load with a preview banner that displays along the top of the page. The notice shows the preview code you can share with others and a link to Store Design for quick edits to your storefront.

"Your store is not launched" notice message


Don't see a banner or it looks different? The banner location and look will vary depending on your theme. If you do not see it when previewing your storefront, check in the Store Design.


Allowing Visitors to Preview Your Store

You can provide others access to preview your pre-launched store by providing them with a preview code. Note that you must be logged in as the Store Owner in order to view the preview code.

To locate your preview code, go to the Dashboard and scroll to the Review & test your store section. It is also located on the preview banner that displays on the top of the page when you click View Store. The preview code will be a string of alphanumeric characters.

Launch store section in Getting Started

When a visitor goes to your homepage, they will see a "coming soon" page with a field to enter your store's preview code. Submitting the store's preview code will give them access to view the store.

Coming soon message displayed on the homepage before store launch

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