The new shopping tab will appear on the profiles of select retailers within the US, UK, and Canada.
As social platforms become more entangled with e-commerce, TikTok is diving in even deeper. The platform is piloting a replacement Shopping tab, allowing Shopify retailers to sell products on the app.
TikTok Brings “Mini Storefronts” to Retailers’ Profiles
A post on the TikTok Newsroom revealed TikTok’s decide to incorporate an in-app shopping feature during its partnership with e-commerce giant Shopify. The new feature, dubbed TikTok Shopping, will only be available to many Shopify retailers within the US, UK, and Canada during testing.
You’ll find the Shopping tab tucked away in any participating retailer’s TikTok profile. Tapping on the tab will open up a variety of products to flick through. Still, you cannot purchase them directly through TikTok—selecting any of the products will lead you to the retailer’s Shopify store to finish your purchase.
TikTok is additionally letting merchants incorporate product links in their TikTok videos. So if you see a product you wish during the video, you will be ready to tap thereon and can once more be redirected to the retailer’s storefront.
As it stands, the feature doesn’t seem to profit creators on the app. Instead, TikTok Shopping appears to be geared more towards dedicated retailers, as users need a TikTok for Business account and a store on Shopify to qualify. So far, it’s like TikTok has some celebrity-backing for the feature, as Kylie Jenner’s cosmetics company is a component of the pilot.
Social Platforms Continue to Prioritize E-Commerce
Social media as an entire has had an undeniable influence on retail behaviour. As TikTok notes in its post, TikTok videos have driven up the sales of many goods, including drugstore skincare products and even feta cheese.
The same goes for other social platforms, like Instagram and Facebook, which have preceded TikTok in taking advantage of in-app e-commerce opportunities.
TikTok’s raid e-commerce isn’t anything new, as Instagram first started letting its users shopped in posts and Stories in 2018. Instagram has since expanded its shopping feature, which it now incorporates into QVC-style Reels. Facebook hasn’t trailed far behind Instagram because it debuted a fanatical shopping section on mobile in August 2020.
There’s No Turning Back
Now that most major social platforms have gotten a taste of e-commerce, it’s unlikely that we’ll return to an era where social shopping doesn’t exist.
Snapchat, Pinterest, and even Twitter are guilty of trying out new shopping features. That said, it’s becoming exceedingly harder to use social media or browse online without getting tempted to shop for something.