Empty state

Empty states are an opportunity to explain a feature that a merchant hasn’t tried yet, and provide encouragement and support to help merchants progress.


Use to explain a single feature before a merchant has used it.

Drag to resize example
  heading="Manage your inventory transfers"
  action={{content: 'Add transfer'}}
  secondaryAction={{content: 'Learn more', url: 'https://help.shopify.com'}}
  <p>Track and receive your incoming inventory from suppliers.</p>
The empty state heading
The image to use for small screens
The image to use for large screens
The image to use for large screens
Elements to display inside empty state
Primary action for empty state
Secondary action for empty state


Put the merchant first by identifying the problem they face and the component that helps them solve it.


When a merchant first encounters a new product or feature, they need to understand what it is and be encouraged to try it.


Empty states are an opportunity to provide explanation about the purpose and benefit of a feature, while gently encouraging merchants to give it a try.

Best Practices

Empty states should:

  • Orient merchants by clearly explaining the benefit and utility of a product or feature
  • Simplify a complicated experience by focusing on a few key features and benefits
  • Use simple and clear language that empowers merchants to move their business forward
  • Be encouraging and never make merchants feel unsuccessful or guilty because they haven’t used a product or feature
  • Explain the steps a merchant needs to take to activate a product or feature
  • Use illustrations thoughtfully as outlined in our illustration guidelines
  • Use only one primary call-to-action button

Content guidelines


  • Descriptive: help merchants understand the feature or product related to the empty state
  • Concise and scannable:
    • Use simple, clear language that can be read at-a-glance
    • Keep titles to single sentence and avoid using punctuation such as periods, commas, or semicolons
    • Written in sentence case (the first word capitalized, the rest lowercase)
    • Action-oriented: encourage the merchant to take the step required to activate the product or feature
  • Create orders and send invoices

  • Orders and invoices


Empty state subtitles act like body content. They should:

  • Describe or explain what’s in the empty state title or item title
  • Be conversational: include articles such as the, a, and an

Primary action

Buttons are used for the most important actions you want a merchant to take. They should be:

  • Clear and predictable: merchants should be able to anticipate what will happen when they click a button. Never deceive a merchant by using misleading titles.
  • Create order

  • Buy shipping label

  • New order

  • Buy

  • Action-led: buttons should always lead with a strong verb that encourages action. To provide enough context to merchants use the {verb}+{noun} format on buttons except in the case of common actions like Save, Close, Cancel, or OK.
  • Activate Apple Pay

  • View shipping settings

  • Try Apple Pay

  • View your settings

  • Scannable: avoid unnecessary words and articles such as the, an, or a.
  • Add menu item

  • Add a menu item

Secondary action

Secondary actions are used for less important actions such as “Learn more” or “Close” buttons. They should follow all the other content rules outlined for primary buttons.