Tutorial: Usage


Rollup/Webpack Based Builds

The latest versions of Rollup and Webpack support ES6 imports. We have an ES module exported to dist/js/shepherd.esm.js. This is also specified as "module" in package.json, which should allow you to import using standard ES import syntax.


import Shepherd from 'shepherd.js';

First create a new Tour instance for your tour:

const tour = new Shepherd.Tour({
  defaultStepOptions: {
    classes: 'shadow-md bg-purple-dark',
    scrollTo: true

The defaultStepOptions option allows you to specify any options which should be applied to all this tour's steps by default.

Next, add your steps:

  id: 'example-step',
  text: 'This step is attached to the bottom of the <code>.example-css-selector</code> element.',
  attachTo: { 
    element: '.example-css-selector', 
    on: 'bottom'
  classes: 'example-step-extra-class',
  buttons: [
      text: 'Next',
      action: tour.next

Finally, to start the tour, just call start on your Tour instance:


If you need to remove a step from your tour, call removeStep on your Tour instance. If the step currently being displayed is the one you're removing, and there are steps left in the tour, then the first one will be shown, otherwise, the tour will be cancelled.



Global Shepherd Object

Shepherd exposes a single object onto the window, Shepherd.

That global object fires several events to let you link up actions with events occurring in any tour:

  • Shepherd.on(eventName, handler, [context]): Bind an event
  • Shepherd.off(eventName, [handler]): Unbind an event
  • Shepherd.once(eventName, handler, [context]): Bind just the next instance of an event

The global Shepherd fires the following events whenever a Tour instance fires them. It adds to the object passed to the event handlers a tour key pointing to the instance which fired the event:

  • complete
  • cancel
  • hide
  • show
  • start
  • active
  • inactive
Current Tour

The global Shepherd includes a property which is always set to the currently active tour, or null if there is no active tour:

  • Shepherd.activeTour

Tour Instances


You create a Tour object for each tour you'd like to create.

Tour's constructor accepts a hash of options:

const myTour = new Shepherd.Tour(options);
Tour Options
  • confirmCancel: If true, will issue a window.confirm before cancelling
  • confirmCancelMessage: The message to display in the confirm dialog
  • defaultStepOptions: Default options for Steps created through addStep
  • exitOnEsc: Exiting the tour with the escape key will be enabled unless this is explicitly set to false.
  • keyboardNavigation: Navigating the tour via left and right arrow keys will be enabled unless this is explicitly set to false.
  • modalContainer An optional container element for the modal. If not set, the modal will be appended to document.body.
  • steps: An array of step options objects or Step instances to initialize the tour with.
  • tourName: An optional "name" for the tour. This will be appended to the the tour's dynamically generated id property -- which is also set on the body element as the data-shepherd-active-tour attribute whenever the tour becomes active.
  • useModalOverlay: Whether or not steps should be placed above a darkened modal overlay. If true, the overlay will create an opening around the target element so that it can remain interactive.
Tour Methods
  • addStep(options): Creates a new Step object with options, and returns the Step instance it created. If the options hash doesn't include an id, one will be generated. You can also pass an existing Step instance rather than options, but note that Shepherd does not support a Step being attached to multiple Tours.
  • getById(id): Return a step with a specific id
  • next(): Advance to the next step, in the order they were added
  • back(): Show the previous step, in the order they were added
  • cancel(): Trigger cancel on the current step, hiding it without advancing
  • hide(): Hide the current step
  • show([id]): Show the step specified by id (if it's a string), or index (if it's a number) provided. Defaults to the first step.
  • start(): Show the first step and begin the tour
  • getCurrentStep(): Returns the currently shown step
  • on(eventName, handler, [context]): Bind an event
  • off(eventName, [handler]): Unbind an event
  • once(eventName, handler, [context]): Bind just the next instance of an event
Tour Events
  • complete: Triggered when the last step is advanced
  • cancel
  • hide
  • show: Triggered with a hash of the step and the previous step
  • start

Steps are instances of the Step object. They are generally created by the Tour::addStep method, which returns the Step instance it created.


Step Options
  • text: The text in the body of the step. It can be one of three types:
    • HTML string
    • HTMLElement object
    • Function to be executed when the step is built. It must return one the two options above.
  • title: The step's title. It becomes an h3 at the top of the step.
  • attachTo: What element the step should be attached to on the page. It should be an object with the properties element and on, where element is an element selector string or a DOM element and on is the optional direction to place the Tippy tooltip.
const new Step(tour, {
  attachTo: { element: '.some .selector-path', on: 'left' },

If you don’t specify an attachTo the element will appear in the middle of the screen. If you omit the on portion of attachTo, the element will still be highlighted, but the tooltip will appear in the middle of the screen, without an arrow pointing to the target.

  • beforeShowPromise: A function that returns a promise. When the promise resolves, the rest of the show code for the step will execute. For example:
    beforeShowPromise: function() {
      return new Promise(function(resolve) {
        $('#my-bootstrap-modal').on('shown.bs.modal', function () {
  • canClickTarget A boolean, that when set to false, will set pointer-events: none on the target
  • cancelIcon Options for the cancel icon
    • enabled Should a cancel β€œβœ•β€ be shown in the header of the step?
    • label The label to add for aria-label
  • classes: A string of extra classes to add to the step's content element.
  • buttons: An array of buttons to add to the step. These will be rendered in a footer below the main body text. Each button in the array is an object of the format:
    • text: The HTML text of the button
    • classes: Extra classes to apply to the <a>
    • secondary: A boolean, that when true, adds a shepherd-button-secondary class to the button
    • action: A function executed when the button is clicked on. It is automatically bound to the tour the step is associated with, so things like this.next will work inside the action. You can use action to skip steps or navigate to specific steps, with something like:
      action() {
        return this.show('some_step_name');
    • events: A hash of events to bind onto the button, for example {'mouseover': function(){}}. Adding a click event to events when you already have an action specified is not supported. You can use events to skip steps or navigate to specific steps, with something like:
    events: {
      click: function() {
        return Shepherd.activeTour.show('some_step_name');
  • advanceOn: An action on the page which should advance shepherd to the next step. It should be an object with a string selector and an event name. For example: {selector: '.some-element', event: 'click'}. It doesn't have to be an event inside the tour, it can be any event fired on any element on the page.
    You can also always manually advance the Tour by calling myTour.next().
  • highlightClass: An extra class to apply to the attachTo element when it is highlighted (that is, when its step is active). You can then target that selector in your CSS.
  • id: The string to use as the id for the step. If an id is not passed one will be generated.
  • modalOverlayOpeningPadding: An amount of padding to add around the modal overlay opening
  • showOn: A function that, when it returns true, will show the step. If it returns false, the step will be skipped.
  • scrollTo: Should the element be scrolled to when this step is shown?
  • scrollToHandler: A function that lets you override the default scrollTo behavior and define a custom action to do the scrolling, and possibly other logic.
  • when: You can define show, hide, etc events inside when. For example:
when: {
  show: function() {
    window.scrollTo(0, 0);
Step Methods
  • show(): Show this step
  • hide(): Hide this step
  • cancel(): Hide this step and trigger the cancel event
  • complete(): Hide this step and trigger the complete event
  • scrollTo(): Scroll to this step's element
  • isOpen(): Returns true if the step is currently shown
  • destroy(): Remove the element
  • on(eventName, handler, [context]): Bind an event
  • off(eventName, [handler]): Unbind an event
  • once(eventName, handler, [context]): Bind just the next instance of an event
Step Events
  • before-show
  • show
  • before-hide
  • hide
  • complete
  • cancel
  • destroy

Please note that complete and cancel are only ever triggered if you call the associated methods in your code.

Advancing on Actions

You can use the advanceOn option, or the Next button, to advance steps. If you would like however to have a step advance on a complex user action, you can do the following:

const myStep = myTour.addStep(options);

yourApp.on('some-event', () => {
  if (myStep.isOpen()){

Rendering Tours in Specific Locations

By default, tour steps will append their elements to the body element of the DOM. This is perfect for most use cases, but not always. If you need to have steps appended elsewhere you can take advantage of Tippy's appendTo option by defining it on the tippyOptions hash inside of each Step's options hash.

πŸ”Ό Displaying Arrows

By default, Shepherd will generate and position an "arrow" element that points to the target of a step. This is done by setting the arrow option to true on each ``Step.options` β€” but you can disable the arrow manually by setting it to false:

  id: 'Step 1', 
  arrow: false

Furthermore, while Shepherd provides some basic arrow styling, you can style it as you wish by targeting the .popper__arrow element.