How to Fix Shopify Missing Template layout/theme.liquid

How to Fix Shopify Missing Template layout/theme.liquid

So you’ve just downloaded a Shopify theme package in a ZIP file? And clueless due to facing this error?

zip does not contain a valid theme: missing template layout/theme.liquid
Shopify theme upload error - zip does not contain a valid theme

Let’s break down this issue to see how we can fix the missing template. Sometimes, the “issue” doesn’t really exist in the first place 😉

Double-check your downloaded zip file’s content

Intuitively, you don’t always click on the archive and see what’s contained inside, right?

But in this case, this simple action will help! So please use the unarchiving software on your computer to look into what’s inside the ZIP file.

a Shopify theme file archive folders

Many a time, a single zip file actually holds additional resources for the Shopify theme such as demo data and documentation. That said, the only theme package that you need to upload in this case is just the zip file with the name “”

However, let’s investigate a bit more to be sure that you’re about to upload the right theme zip file.

Make sure to upload the right file:

Now please unzip the into a folder and find out more.

Basically, a Shopify theme zip file should include these folders:

  • assets
  • config
  • layout
  • locales
  • sections
  • snippets
  • templates

So the layout folder should include a theme liquid file so that the issue won’t occur again.

a Shopify theme file includes these folders

Now open the layout folder, if you see a theme.liquid file, then you’re good to go. Just zip them back and upload the zip file to your Shopify store.

When uploaded successfully, navigate to the theme item > Actions > Edit code and you reach this liquid file. This is the base of the theme, which hosts repeated theme sections such as headers and footers.

layout theme liquid in Shopify theme

While the templates directory can include many .liquid files and they are all different from theme to theme, the layout directory must not miss the theme.liquid file. As it’s where all templates are rendered from.

Wrapping Up

One of the great things about using Shopify is the vibrant theme, product page customization, and app ecosystem. There are many Shopify themes to improve your store’s general look and feel. Just keep in mind to unzip your theme file to make sure it’s not missing theme.liquid.

In order to improve other aspects of Shopify product variants, don’t forget to check out these worthwhile apps:

So try those apps on and explore your own way — with these features, you’ll be able to easily locate your crucial theme functions and customizations.

Good or bad, we’d love to hear your ideas and suggestions. Find us on Facebook – YayCommerce.

Thuy Nguyen
Thuy Nguyen

Thuy Nguyen is a product growth hacker and professional blogger. When not producing content for marketing's sake, she can most often be found writing content for content's sake, reading Graphic Guides, or enjoying a good laugh with The Big Bang Theory.

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