1st July 2022
The further integration of commerce into social media saw some important announcements made this week, including TikTok testing a new dedicated ‘Shop’ feed tab; Twitter launching a Shopify integration and Pinterest installing a former Google Commerce executive as its new CEO.
TikTok’s latest commerce test is taking place in Indonesia and sees the introduction of a ‘Shop’ tab at the top of the home screen alongside the ‘Following’ and ‘For You’ tabs. The new tab serves as a hub for products being sold through TikTok Shop, a feature that enables merchants and creators to sell products directly on TikTok and which is currently available in Indonesia, Vietnam, Singapore and the UK.
The Shop tab allows users to browse and purchase products from across a range of categories including electronics and clothing and it also includes a ‘cart’ functionality as well as a menu featuring sections for information on orders, messages, vouchers, address and payment.
At the same time, Twitter is also trying to enable a more frictionless commerce experience on its platform with the introduction of a new partnership with Shopify enabling Shopify merchants to list their products on Twitter Professional Profiles.
Functionality for Shopify merchants includes the ability to automatically sync their inventory with the Twitter Shopping Manager (Twitter’s commerce platform) so that when changes are made on Shopify they are replicated on Twitter. It also includes the ability to highlight products with ‘Shop Spotlight’ (the dedicated space at the top of a profile where businesses can showcase their products) or ‘Twitter Shops’ (where merchants can handpick up to 50 products to showcase to shoppers).
Consumers simply tap on an item via a carousel display of products on a profile and/or a dedicated product display page, and they are redirected to the merchants Shopify product page to complete the purchase. The new function is initially available in the US.
Lastly, Pinterest is making a change at the top with co-founder and long-time CEO Ben Silbermann handing over to former Google Commerce executive Bill Ready, who has spent the last two years running payment and commerce operations at Google as well as having held senior leadership roles at PayPal. Pinterest’s shares rose 9% in extended trading after the news was announced as the market viewed this as a shift more towards commerce solutions.
Social media is continuing to focus on commerce as the sales funnel collapses and the ad and sale combine on one platform. As this happens, the battle to create the best and most frictionless experience for the user will heat up.