Featured Posts

To top
30 Sep

What Will the Rise of TikTok Shop Mean for

What Will the Rise of TikTok Shop Mean for

When creator Mikayla Nogueira presses the shiny latest “shop” tab at the highest of her TikTok inbox, she’s promptly greeted with a sea of unread message requests.

“It’s all the pieces you can imagine — not even just beauty — it’s like every brand possible is reaching out wanting me to make use of TikTok Shop with them,” said the 25-year-old makeup artist and wonder creator, who shot to fame on the platform in the course of the height of the COVID-19 pandemic and now counts nearly 15 million followers on the app.

While it was just this month that TikTok formally rolled out its shopping integration to its 150 million U.S. users, Massachusetts-based Nogueira was among the many first to make use of the feature while it was still in beta testing last 12 months, doing a live shopping stream with E.l.f. Cosmetics through which she showcased the brand’s bestselling products.

“We were principally attempting to see if TikTok Shop can be successful — to see if people were willing to click the shopable icon, try and truly undergo with purchasing,” said Nogueira.

TikTok virality has been a catalyst for explosive beauty sales because the platform went mainstream in 2020, propelling products just like the Dyson Airwrap, Dior Addict Lip Glow Oil and Charlotte Tilbury Airbrush Flawless foundation, amongst others, to latest heights. Now, the social platform goals to create a one-stop shop through which users can seamlessly purchase the products they’re already discovering on TikTok.

Briefly, the phrase “TikTok made me buy it” is getting literal.

“TikTok Shop is the primary time we’ve done social shopping with a serious partner that has really leaned into what their strengths are as a social platform,” said Toto Haba, senior vice chairman of promoting and communications at Profit Cosmetics.

The shopping integration has meant big business for Profit, which launched via TikTok Shop on Douyin — TikTok’s Chinese sister app — two years ago. “TikTok Shop probably accounts for about 30 percent of our total online sales in China, and about half of our business in China is finished through online transactions,” said Haba, adding that Profit launched on TikTok Shop within the U.K. in September 2022, followed by a U.S. foray this summer when the brand’s latest Fan Fest Mascara, $28, launched exclusively on TikTok Shop for 48 hours before landing at Sephora, Ulta Beauty and its own e-commerce website.

TikTok creator @sandijarquin is certainly one of Profit Cosmetics’ TikTok Shop affiliate partners.


Profit hosted a 24-hour shopping livestream on TikTok to kick off the launch — making it the primary U.S. brand to achieve this — and, two months later, sales of the Fan Fest Mascara via TikTok Shop are still outpacing those made through Profit’s e-commerce website.

Most of those sales are generated through in-feed shopable videos by the brand’s roughly 1,000 hand-picked TikTok Shop affiliate creators. Live shopping — the important driver of Profit’s TikTok Shop business in China — only generates between 10 percent and 20 percent of the brand’s U.S. TikTok Shop business.

“Having creators talk over with their audiences in their very own, authentic way is what has been taking off for us,” said Haba, noting that long-form, explanatory videos seem like only in converting sales, and “more targeted” creators, or those with anywhere from 10,000 to 100,000 followers, are generating more sales than the mega-influencers Profit has enlisted to assist get its TikTok Shop presence off the bottom.

In response to TikTok, there are roughly 200,000 merchants on TikTok Shop within the U.S. and greater than 100,000 users signed up for the combination’s associates program, which connects creators of all following sizes with sellers so as to earn commission on sales made via their content.

It’s as much as brands how much commission they need to supply creators, but “one of the best practice TikTok is guiding on is between 10 percent to 30 percent [commission] for creators — that’s the sweet spot where beauty brands should live,” said Leslie Ann Hall, cofounder and chief executive officer of Iced Media, the agency which onboarded Dieux Skin, Morroccanoil and Fékkai to TikTok Shop.

Brands and creators can promote products through 4 important modes on TikTok Shop: in-feed shopable videos — those which appear on the For You page and are tagged with the “eligible for commission” label within the lower left-hand corner; product showcases on a brand’s own TikTok page; live shopping, and the Shop tab, which is a type of product marketplace currently available to 40 percent of U.S. TikTok users, with plans to go wider in October.

“The expectation for brands needs to be that the vast majority of these TikTok Shop sales are going to come back from the For You page — TikTok appears to be prioritizing that organic visibility,” said Hall, adding that TikTok charges a transaction fee of two percent plus 30 cents per purchase made via TikTok Shop.

Mikayla Nogueira was one of the first TikTok creators to try out the shopping integration in the U.S.

Mikayla Nogueira was certainly one of the primary TikTok creators to check out the shopping integration within the U.S.


Brand storefronts, Hall said, probably won’t be much of a driving force for sales in the intervening time, because, “behaviorally, that’s just not how the patron is shopping without delay — for essentially the most part, consumers probably don’t even know that [profile] tab exists; it’s not native behavior to TikTok.”

Beyond the seeming overnight prevalence of affiliate videos on the For You page, certainly one of the important facets of TikTok Shop generating buzz is the steep discounts the platform is offering users, particularly first-time shoppers, who’re granted a 50 percent discount (as much as $20 off) on their first TikTok Shop purchase.

“The incentives TikTok is offering for brands to check and learn are type of unprecedented,” said Hall. “Whether it’s subsidizing coupons, subsidizing free shipping, subsidizing ad credits and promoting a few of these shoppable videos without charge to the advertiser — there are a variety of great perks for brands to onboard early.”

For indie brands like 4am Skin, founded by Jade Beguelin and Sabrina Sade, these subsidized costs pose an enormous strategic profit in relation to latest customer acquisition.

“We definitely saw an enormous boost, just about from Day One, starting on TikTok Shop,” said Sade. “We wouldn’t give you the option to supply someone 50 percent off straight off the bat, but we’re not those incurring that cost — we’re getting paid full-price for somebody to try our product, which is pretty cool for a smaller business,” said Sade. Within the month that the brand has been on TikTok Shop, it has sold just over 1,000 of its reusable Extra time Undereye Masks, which retail for $16, via the platform.

“Historically, we’ve desired to do informational videos and never just cool, trendy ones — they convert well though they won’t get a variety of views,” said Beguelin, adding the brand’s post-purchase survey indicates 88 percent of 4am consumers have been finding the brand through TikTok even before its TikTok Shop debut. “Now with TikTok Shop, we’re seeing that those informational videos are each getting a variety of views and getting a variety of conversion, which is that type of magic sauce — before, it was one or the opposite.”

Jade Beguelin, cofounder of 4am Skin.

Jade Beguelin, cofounder of 4am Skin.


Not all brands, though, have been as smitten by TikTok Shop’s discounting and myriad cost subsidizing — for which TikTok has yet to specify an end date.

“The subsidizing coupons — a few of our prestige brands usually are not opting into that,” said Hall, noting many such brands have yet to come back around to Black Friday discounting, much less this arrangement. “Even when TikTok is subsidizing those costs — a few of these brands won’t be related to putting their product at a reduction.”

In a really perfect brand scenario, TikTok Shop will function an entry point for brand new consumers to a brand, without drawing existing consumers away from its other retail channels.

“Profit Cosmetics is pretty widely distributed — the final thing we would like is one other website where you possibly can buy Profit that just cannibalizes our other partners,” said Haba, emphasizing the brand’s focus is cultivating TikTok Shop as a discovery platform. “Considered one of the things we’re working on with TikTok is make social shopping work as a prestige brand, without being really discount-driven.”

For Dieux cofounder Charlotte Palermino, early-stage momentum on TikTok Shop has fueled a subsequent uptick in visitors to the brand’s own e-commerce website. “We see people buying through TikTok Shop, yes, but the larger thing that we’ve seen is organic traffic — persons are going to dieuxskin.com and going to research the product a bit bit more and trying out our store — there’s been this amazing halo effect,” she said.

The way in which Palermino sees it, TikTok Shop has potential to function the final word Amazon-meets-QVC hybrid.

“So many corporations have launched and said ‘we’re the QVC for the following generation,’ and I’m like ‘that already exists — it’s TikTok and Instagram, it’s just the disclosures weren’t clear until now,’” Palermino said.

Within the two weeks that Dieux Skin has been on TikTok Shop, the brand has seen a mean 80 percent uptick in revenue every time a TikTok Shop video promoting its latest Easy Angel moisturizer goes viral.

Tarte Cosmetics, meanwhile, has tripled the sales of its TikTok Shop storefront since adding the shop capability to existing videos promoting its Maracuja lip balms and blushes. “Since we launched TikTok Shop, every day we have now about double the brand new users,” said Samantha Kitain, chief marketing officer at Tarte.

“Typically what we see after we launch something is we’ll have one really big day of sales, after which things type of return to normal with a slight increase. Now we’re just getting this sustained engagement,” said Palermino, adding that she’s still “not putting all my eggs into [the TikTok Shop] basket,” but relatively seeing the feature as “as yet another arm within the arsenal.”

Since the brand has yet to harness affiliate creators, most of Dieux Skin’s momentum has been generated through videos uploaded by Palermino herself, who counts greater than 394,000 followers on TikTok.

The Beachwaver Co. founder Sarah Potempa hosting a live shopping stream on TikTok Shop.

The Beachwaver Co. founder Sarah Potempa hosting a live shopping stream on TikTok Shop.


“We’re hand-selecting five creators to start out, because I don’t love selling my products as something that works for everybody; we would like individuals who have actually used our products before,” said Palermino.

Hair tool brand The Beachwaver Co — which Spate reports is one of the vital mentioned brands on TikTok alongside the #TikTokShop hashtag — is constructing momentum on TikTok Shop via live stream shopping, a method founder and celebrity hairstylist Sarah Potempa has long enlisted off the platform.

“We’re doing a community kind of show — on Fridays I’ll do an academic, masterclass type of show where I’ll teach people achieve a certain kind of curl, and on Tuesdays I’ll pack orders within the warehouse and it’s a time for [customers] to buy live,” Potempa said.

For Gabi DeMartino, a beauty and lifestyle creator who first gained prominence on YouTube in the course of the early 2010’s, TikTok Shop offers a streamlined way for creators to share recommendations to their audience. “I similar to how TikTok is slowly but surely putting all the pieces under one roof — within the OG YouTube days, it wasn’t that organized,” said DeMartino, whose primary platform remains to be YouTube, though TikTok is her fastest-growing.

Some brands like Summer Fridays, Youthforia and Kosas are testing the waters on TikTok Shop through retail partners like Revolve before rolling out stand-alone brand storefronts and affiliate efforts.

“We wish to be mindful after we tackle latest platforms — Revolve is our only authorized retailer on TikTok Shop without delay, and we’re seeing success with it,” said Summer Fridays cofounder Marianna Hewitt, adding the brand’s Lip Butter Balm is its best-performing stock keeping unit on TikTok Shop up to now.

Identical to Amazon, though, TikTok Shop is grappling with a proliferation of unauthorized sellers peddling fake and counterfeit products. Sol de Janeiro, for instance, is simply officially sold on the platform through Revolve, yet merchants like The Wally Store and Unineed U.S. have collectively sold tens of 1000’s of Sol de Janeiro products via TikTok Shop — even enlisting popular creators to achieve this. Products by Summer Fridays, Saie, Tower 28 and various other brands are also being sold under unauthorized merchants on TikTok Shop.

Dieux Skin founder Charlotte Palermino.

Dieux Skin founder Charlotte Palermino.


“The identical way that brands launch on Amazon purely to stop counterfeit, you’re going to see that on TikTok Shop,” said Palermino.

A spokesperson for TikTok said the corporate has counterfeit policies in place which prohibit fakes and dupes, and is taking motion to remove products which infringe on mental property protection.

K18, which once upon a time joined Amazon mainly to combat unauthorized reselling and has since grown its presence with the e-tailer right into a profitable arm for the business, is taking a slow-and-steady approach to TikTok Shop. The brand unveiled its profile storefront this week, and plans to onboard affiliates down the road as “phase two” of its strategy.

“Knowing that TikTok is now pushing Shop inside the platform, that’s almost going to resolve a spot that a variety of brands see when investing in performance marketing on TikTok,” said Cristina Szewczyk, vice chairman of digital at K18.

This also poses a bonus for creators when negotiating deals and commission rates with brands.

“We got a pitch from a creator in our inbox saying, ‘Hey, our client’s video went viral on TikTok Shop, she sold X amount of units, we’d like to partner on Shop’ — creators now have all these analytics and this data on their end that show how successful it might be for a brand to work with them,” said Hewitt.

And while brands like Tarte, 4am Skin and Dieux are mainly offering creator commission rates inside the 10 percent to twenty percent range for now, Hall thinks it could possibly be price it for some to go greater.

“In the event you’re not a household name brand and you need to get some top influencers to concentrate, why not go for a 50, 60, 70 percent commission rate and just see what happens?” said Hall, who thinks of TikTok Shop as “almost LTK [formerly known as Liketoknow.it] on steroids. We’re showing direct attribution on TikTok at a scale that we never have before.”

While it’s too early to inform the total impact of TikTok Shop on the wonder industry — and what its emergence means for competitors like Amazon and specialty beauty retailers — brands definitely seem like approaching the feature with a tactical optimism.


Recommended Products

No Comments

Sorry, the comment form is closed at this time.