In 30 seconds:
- eCommerce has increased since the pandemic, and now TikTok has revealed ways for brands to combine their TikTok profiles with Shopify storefronts and sell in-app.
- With a billion, largely Gen Z users, businesses who aren’t on TikTok are losing out on a mega marketing opportunity.
- And considering the huge numbers of active users on the platform, converting viewers into customers means making some serious sales.
#TikTokMadeMeBuyIt. By now we’ve all seen the popular hashtag that highlights trending products featured in TikTok videos. From product reviews to shopping lists, it introduces users to a whole new world of shopping inspo.
But now users can expect to find more than just inspiration on TikTok – they can actually shop there too.
That’s thanks to the recent TikTok Shopify integration. This new feature means that for the first time, users can now purchase items directly through videos and on merchant profiles. The whole purchasing process – from initial product discovery right through to checkout – can all take place without exiting the TikTok app.
It’s a move towards the kind of app shopping experiences users are beginning to expect; both Instagram and Facebook have strong social commerce platforms, and TikTok shopping is the newest in a growing trend for platforms to streamline the eCommerce experience.
The pilot initially launched for Shopify merchants in the US, UK and Canada, but over the coming weeks will be available by application through the Shopify TikTok.
Is TikTok good for eCommerce?
The video sharing app might be the fastest-growing social media platform, but does its popularity as an entertainment platform translate into e-commerce platform potential?
Brands will be pleased to know that TikTok commerce looks more than promising. TikTok’s internal data suggests that one in four users either research or purchase a product after watching a TikTok video. And with the majority of users spending upwards of an hour a day on the app, that’s a lot of videos – and a lot of products.
Shopify have also noted that demand is increasing – installs across their social commerce channels increased by 76% from February 2020 to 2021.
So with more consumers moving to the TikTok app, and more profiles installing their Shopify access, it’s clear that by integrating your storefront on TikTok you’re meeting consumers where they are. And that means an easier shopping experience for users, and more sales for you.
How does TikTok integrate with Shopify?
Thankfully, setting up Shopify access on TikTok profiles is relatively straightforward. If you’re ready to launch your online store on TikTok, just follow these simple steps:
1. Set up a TikTok for Business account
To turn TikTok into a mini storefront for your business, you have to make sure you’re running a TikTok for Business account. Switching to a business account opens up a whole host of benefits for merchants not offered to regular users. You’ll be given access to more detailed analytics, including performance tracking, and the opportunity to add an eCommerce link to your profile.
The option to switch to a business account is listed under the hamburger menu on the top right of your profile page, under “manage account”.
2. Install the TikTok channel on your Shopify store
Searching for TikTok in the Shopify App Store will bring up the option to “add app” – and from here you’ll be able to install the TikTok channel.
Once that’s done, the TikTok channel will appear in your Shopify Admin Dashboard (to the left). From this panel, you’ll now be able to connect your TikTok for Business account to your Shopify store.
3. Complete install
Once you’ve successfully connected your TikTok account, a TikTok Business Dashboard will appear. This is where you’ll find all the options to control your TikTok for Business account and complete the integration to install the TikTok channel on your store.
Voila: now your TikTok audience will be able to purchase your products on the TikTok app via product links.
How do I advertise my Shopify on TikTok?
TikTok might be the newest frontier in social commerce, but it’s important to remember that in order to reach consumers on this platform, brands must engage with them in the right ways. When asked how they mainly use TikTok, the majority of users replied, “to find funny/entertaining content”.
Shopping, therefore, is a potential extra bonus of TikTok – not the primary focus.
That said, according to a study by Adweek-Morning Consult, 49% of TikTok users have said they have purchased something after seeing it advertised, promoted or reviewed on TikTok. Turning TikTok into a digital point of purchase therefore has huge potential, as it removes customers’ barriers to access.
We have a lot of advice for brands looking to nail their TikTok marketing strategy, and when it comes to advertising your Shopify, there are even more opportunities Shopify merchants can leverage to increase brand recognition and reach an even bigger audience:
1. Understand your audience
Any TikTok Shopping hacks we can offer therefore hinge on this most vital advice: to understand marketing TikTok, understand Gen Z. We talk about what Gen Z’s love of TikTok says about them in our article here.
Gen Z are the first generation to grow up online, and they see more online content (and ads) than any other generation. This explains their notoriously short attention span. If you want Gen Z’s recognition, your brand has to stand out for the right reasons.
2. Live Stream shopping events
In December 2021, TikTok began hosting “On Trend”, its first live shopping event in the UK – headed up by celebrity presenter Rylan Clark-Neal. It’s proof of the enormous drive behind pursuing the potential of live shopping events, where users will be able to shop and watch at the same time.
Walmart, too, has experimented with the live format – which is reported to drive the biggest return on investments of all social media formats.
The brand has hosted multiple events on TikTok, including a live-stream in March focussed on beauty and haircare products and featuring multiple TikTok influencers, including popular #BeautyTok influencer Gabby Morrison (@gabbymorr).
Following its first live-stream, Walmart said that the event had grown their TikTok fan base by 25%. It’s clear that live content is a fertile format for reaching users who report liking to feel involved in the brands they choose to support.
3. Use product tags
Product tags are one of the most exciting options to come from the Shopify integration. These tags allow brands to link directly to featured products in-video, effectively signposting specific products for users to explore.
As one of the first profiles selected to incorporate Shopify, Kylie Jenner’s “Kylie Cosmetics” has been able to explore the inclusion of product tags in their videos. Users who watch the beauty content posted by the brand are able to select tagged products, where they will then be directed to Shopify to complete the transaction.
By adding product tags to creative content, brands are able to turn all videos into potential advertisements – a much “softer” approach than the traditional ads that Gen Z distrusts so much.
4. Leverage the creator economy
With 72% of Gen Z reporting that they follow several influencers – and almost half of those having made a purchase based on a recommendation from one of those – it’s clear that leveraging content creators is a great way to target the TikTok community.
Forging a partnership with an influencer is one of the most effective ways to boost sales amongst a specific target demographic – and sharing any content created to your brand’s profile not only increases the potential audience and earns you favour, it also allows you to use the Shopify benefits on influencer-created content.
That’s a double-win if you ask us!
What the TikTok Shopify partnership means for brands
TikTok is already proving itself as a commerce hub as well as a popular centre of content. One in ten UK consumers start their fashion shopping journey on TikTok, and shopping inspiration has been a huge use of the platform since the beginning.
The Shopify TikTok integration, therefore, is a huge opportunity to streamline the experience for users. With TikTokers already well-versed in beginning their online shopping journeys with the video-sharing app, utilising Shopify to meet them where they are means the potential for easier advertising and increased sales.
But to make the most of this new window of opportunity, brands need to know how to get their messaging right. If you set up shop on TikTok but no one knows you exist, you won’t make any sales!
Luckily, we can help with that too. Check out our article on creating TikTok posts that go viral – or talk to us about how we can help your brand create a successful TikTok marketing strategy. We’ll help you make the most of the TikTok space!
For more insight into how to succeed on TikTok and make the most of its shopping features, check out the links below:
To find out how Fanbytes can help you connect with a Gen Z Audience, fill in the form to get in touch!