Over the last couple of years I’ve worked on lots of requirements gathering projects and discoveries with retailers moving to Shopify Plus and layered navigation / filtering is an area that always comes up in discussion. Shopify Plus has very basic filtering functionality natively, based solely on tag values, which only support flat, single-select application.
This is a real weakness of Shopify Plus against their competitors (particularly Magento – with third party modules – and Salesforce Commerce Cloud) – but you can get around this via some of the apps available.
The functional requirements that are generally required for a solution are generally:
- Multi-faceted filtering (ability to use a combination of filtering options and refine down to only items that meet ALL of the criterria) – this isn’t available natively via Shopify
- Multi-select filtering (multiple values on a single filtering option) – this isn’t available natively via Shopify
- Ability to re-organise filtering options
- Retain order / merchandising of original collection page with remaining products (pre-filter)
- Ability to assign single select and multi select filtering against filters – this isn’t available natively via Shopify
- Usage of rich features, such as price slider, value search, colour swatches, product count against features, review filtering etc – this isn’t available natively via Shopify
- Ability to retain custom badging and overlays
There are then more desirable, non-essential features, which are:
- Integrated visual merchandising capabilities (with the ability to assign rules and weightings)
- Ability to control filtering parameters and define how Google and other search engines crawl and index filtering pages
- Ability to inject custom content and meta data against specific filter pages
- Integrated quick view / quick buy functionality
- Ability to handle similar values as single or multiple filter options (e.g. colours)
If you think I’ve missed any requirements here, please feel free to suggest them in the comments below.
What is multi-select filtering?
Multi-select filtering is essentially the ability to select two options (within a single filtering group) to filter a product set to match both of the two values. An example could be to show “red” and “blue” jumpers.
Using BoostCommerce for filtering
BoostCommerce’s solution is our primary recommendation as it meets the majority of the requirements above and also offers quite a lot of
The app is also very cost-effective. A lot of big retailers use BoostCommerce as well, including GAP, Jockey, MAVI
Alternative options for filtering in Shopify Plus
Although we tend to recommend using BoostCommerce in isolation for filtering (alongside a separate search solution for example), other solutions include:
- PowerTools – Shopify app that provides enhanced filtering (as well as other features) but it doesn’t allow for the standard grid to be served initially.
These are just a few alternative options that also cover off other areas if needed. If you have any questions around any of these areas, please feel free to add them in the comments.