When creating a collection on Shopify, you can do so in one of two ways: automated or manual.
If you choose to create a manual collection, you simply pick all the products you want to include by hand. These are useful for creating very specific collections that couldn’t be made with automation.
The drawbacks to manual collections are that they are fixed lists and take more work to create and upkeep. Products can only be removed or added manually.
An automated collection is more complex and versatile. These collections automatically add products based on one or more rules you set.
Set rules based on:
Compare at price
Even as you add new products to your store, automated collections will pull them in if they fit the conditions set. The only drawback is that it can sometimes be difficult to exclude certain products if they match your base conditions.
The trick to making automated collections more versatile is to tag your products to create unique individualized category structures that you can draw from.
What is a collection page on Shopify?
When you create a fancy new collection (or boring old collection, if you prefer), a new page is added to your store. This is your collection page (hi, collection page).
This page simply displays as a gridded assemblage of the products included in that particular collection styled based on your Shopify theme.
Whatever you named the collection will become the page title, and the description paragraph (if you included one) will show below that.
Shoppers can use filters along the top to filter the products in a few ways:
But, you can customize your collection pages further with Shogun for an even better customer experience.
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How to create a collection on Shopify
First thing for creating a collection is to find yourself on your Shopify admin dashboard.
You there? Perfect.
Step 1: Go to Products > Collections and click "Create collection"
Now, in the menu along the left side, go to Products > Collections. This is where you will find all collections you create.
If just starting out, you may see a collection called ‘Home page.’ Once you begin creating your collections, this one can be deleted (or silently ignored for all time).
To create your first collection, go to the upper right corner and click the Create collection button.
Now you can start cobbling together your brand new collection!
Step 2: Add collection title, description, and image
On this page, you will be able to title your new product collection, add a description, include an image, change how the page shows for search engines, and decide how products will be added to the collection.
Your title is vital as it will be the headline of your collection page and show up wherever you add your collection throughout your store.
Adding a high-quality image here will provide some visual flare for your collection page (behind the title in the header) and other pages where the collection is added.
The collection description is optional but can help define the category of products included in your collection.
The description will show up on your collection page below the header. It’s also great for SEO to include a description that further explains your products (search engines love extra context).
To get a sense of what your collection page looks like with and without the addition of a description and image, here’s my plain old Stuff We’re Loving collection page with just the title and the same page with the addition of an image and description.
The page not only looks better, but it includes an SEO-friendly block of text that helps inform visitors on what the page is all about.
Step 3: Edit collection page SEO
Speaking of SEO, you can edit exactly how your collection page will show on search engines with the last setting on this page.
Just click Edit website SEO and go on to edit the title, description, and URL slug. What searchers will see displays at the top of the section as you make changes.
Altering the title and description in the SEO settings won’t change the collection title and description, only how it shows on Google and other search engines.
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Step 4: Choose your collection type and save
You can choose between an automated and a manual collection, which we'll cover in more detail next.
Once you've chosen your collection type, save your progress and get ready to start adding products to your collection.
How to add products to collections on Shopify
Now to get to the bread and butter of building collections—the products.
You can add products in one of two ways: manually or automated through rules.
Once you save your collection, your collection type cannot be changed. Luckily, it’s easy to create a new one.
You’ll first have to save your collection with the Manual radio button selected to build a manual collection.
Then, click the search field to find particular products or click browse to select from all products. From there, simply choose the products you want included and click Add when finished.
You’ll be able to add more products to this collection whenever you want.
Once you’ve added your products, you can change how they will be organized on the page by choosing from the Sort: dropdown field.
You can sort by best selling, alphabetically, newest, oldest, highest price, lowest price, or manually.
Click Save at the bottom of the screen, and your first collection is officially in the books!
Products can only be added or removed manually, so stay on top of editing this collection.
If you want a collection that maintains itself, an automated collection is the way to go.
When you click the Automated radio button, a Conditions section will appear. This is where you will set your rules for how products are added to your new collection.
The products can match all conditions you set out, or they can match just one of the laid-out conditions.
As I mentioned before, these conditions can be based on product type, product title, product tag, vendor, price, weight, stock level, compare at price, and variant’s title.
You can automate collections based on product types to only show earrings (as in the example above) or bedroom furniture. Or based on pricing less than $50 and with the product tag of “gift” to capture unique collections for bargain gift buyers.
There are so many ways to create your perfect collection. I’ll leave that up to you.
However you chose to do it, you've now created your first collection and, in so doing, your first collection page! Great work.
Now on to adding those collections and links to those collection pages throughout your store.
How to add a collection to a page on Shopify
In Shopify, you can add collections to your homepage in two ways—as a featured collection or as a collection list.
Adding featured collections
Featured collections allow you to showcase your products from particular collections on your store’s most visited page in a grid (or a collage, depending on your theme).
You can add multiple featured collections to your homepage to show off your excellent product line.
Note that featured collections have a product limit that depends on the theme you are using. Using multiple collections can help you get around these limits when you want to feature your whole catalog on the homepage.