Aim of study The shape effects of nanoparticles are very significant in fluid flow and heat transfer. In this paper, we discuss the effects of nanoparticles shape in nanofluid flow between divergent-convergent channels theoretically. In this present study, various shapes of nanoparticles, namely sphere, column and lamina in zinc oxide-water nanofluid are used. The effect of the magnetic field and joule dissipation are also considered. Research methodology The system of nonlinear partial differential equations (PDEs) is converted into ordinary differential equations (ODES). The analytical solutions are successfully obtained and compared with numerical solutions. The Homotopy perturbation method and NDsolve method are used to compare analytical and numerical results respectively. Conclusion The results show that the lamina shape nanoparticles have higher performance in temperature disturbance and rate of heat transfer as compared to other shapes of nanoparticles.