Crewe had to settle for a third successive draw despite teenager Nick Powell's ninth goal of the season.
Promotion-chasing Shrewsbury had gone in front when Crewe keeper Steve Phillips's clearance hit the back of James Collins and looped into the net.
But Powell, just 17, equalised by glancing home Ashley Westwood's cross.
Phillips redeemed himself with fine saves from Jon Taylor and Ian Sharps but Powell wasted a chance to win it for Alex by screwing his shot wide.
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Crewe manager Steve Davis told BBC Radio Stoke:
"We didn't start well in terms of the goal, it was a setback which was difficult to recover from."
"Our budget is probably a third of their budget, which you have to take in to consideration, (and) the lads had a real good go."
"There is a vulnerability about us which is still evident, so we have to be more solid and sound with our defending."
Shrewsbury manager Graham Turner told BBC Radio Shropshire:
"When you don't win you always have a tinge of disappointment.
"But when you go away from home, against a side not far off the play-offs and who won't be far off at the end of the season, you've got to say that's a reasonable point.
"We had one or two opportunities in the first half and made the keeper make one or two saves, and in the second we lacked that final cutting edge.
"But you had two teams wanting to pass it, wanting to play, and I thought it was a great advert for second division football."