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Effective Linking and Filtering for Shopify Bookstore

Online book shoppers will buy more books if they find the bookstore navigation easy and effective.

In this regards, how to effectively organize your book collection for easy customer navigation, allowing them to filter through authors, publishers, book binding, and more?

I’m going to show you how to create link-able authors: when the customer clicks on the author link, then all the books of that author are listed.


1. Using vendor field

One way to achieve this is by leveraging the vendor and tags fields of the product.

Let’s explore the first method: leveraging the vendor field.

Take, for instance, bookshop store as a reference.

Upon browsing, you’ll notice that essential details like the author’s name, genre, and book binding are clickable. The author’s name conveniently links to all his works, offering a seamless exploration experience. This feature significantly streamlines the search process, eliminating the need to hunt for specific books by a particular author.

Now, let’s implement a similar approach in our bookstore. To begin, I’ve added the first set of five books:

  • “A Hat Full of Sky (Tiffany Aching, 2)” - by Terry Pratchett
  • “Good Omens: The Nice and Accurate Prophecies of Agnes Nutter, Witch”- by Terry Pratchett and Neil Gaiman
  • “Guards! Guards!: Introduction by Ben Aaronovitch (Discworld Novels)” - by Terry Pratchett
  • “‘Night Watch: A Novel of Discworld (Discworld, 29)” - by Terry Pratchett
  • “The Wit and Wisdom of Discworld” - by Terry Pratchett

In the vendor field I store the author.


Let’s see how this book looks in the store.


The author is clickable. And when your customers click on the name, they get a list of all the books written by that author (the name format should be the same for all his books).


You may have noticed that the book “Good Omens: The Nice and Accurate Prophecies of Agnes Nutter, Witch” - by Terry Pratchett, Neil Gaiman - did not appear on this list. This is because the book has two authors.

If you are including more than one author to the vendor field, clicking on their names will now only bring up the books that they have co-authored.

2. Using tags

If you prefer not to add the author to the vendor, the second option involves inserting the author into tags.

The process mirrors the previous approach, but this time, include the authors names in the tags section.


The book on the store page with tags:


Tags are clickable. When your customers click on the author name (Terry Pratchett), all five books authored by Terry Pratchett now appear in the results.


This is the main benefit of tags approach over vendor approach. Each tag is clickable and filters the author individually.

3. Take action

If you’ve decided to make authors (or any other information) clickable - follow these steps:

  1. Go to Shopify Admin > Online Store -> Customise -> Select any product -> Click Add block -> Select Custom liquid.

How to add custom liquid code to Shopify theme

2a. To connect authors using vendor field insert the custom liquid code below:

{% if product.vendor != '' %}
  Author: {{ product.vendor | link_to_vendor }}
{% endif %}

Then going forward make sure to store the book author into the vendor field.

2b. Or insert the following custom liquid code to connect authors to tags:

{% if product.tags.size > 0 %}
  {% for tag in product.tags %}
    <a href="/collections/all/{{ tag | handleize }}">
      {{ tag }}
      {% unless forloop.last %},{% endunless %}
  {% endfor %}
{% endif %}

Then going forward make sure to store the book authors into the tags field.

Recommendation: to save time and automate the process of importing books into your bookstore and insert the authors into vendor or tags, consider using ISBNExpress: Books Importer Shopify App.

4. Conclusion

A good online bookstore must use effective linking strategies. A beautifully designed site won’t work if your customers can’t navigate and find information properly.

By encouraging customers to explore author links, they tend to spend more time and buy more in the bookstore, increasing your profit.