Under scrutiny as a potential threat to national security, rapidly growing social media platform TikTok is moving forward with its in-app ecommerce offering “TikTok Shop,” a series of fulfillment centers, and a potential membership plan similar to Amazon in the U.S.
But how are consumers, brands and business owners reacting to the news?
To analyze sentiments around TikTok Shop, delivery experience company Circuit surveyed over 1,300 consumers and business owners in the U.S., and found that the majority plan to use TikTok Shop to buy and sell online in 2023, and believe that it will eventually overtake Amazon's ecommerce empire.
More specifically, 92% of small business owners involved in the study plan to include TikTok in their 2023 marketing strategy, and 79% of consumers think TikTok Shop will take business away from Amazon.
Furthermore, 78% of consumers planned to use TikTok Shop for holiday shopping this year and said they would be willing to spend an average of $12 a month on a premium membership akin to Amazon's.
Circuit also found that different age groups have different expectations for the new TikTok offering, with younger shoppers (Gen Z, ages 18-24) saying they want an option similar to Amazon Prime that streams original content. Millennials (ages 25-41) hope for the same free shipping offered by Amazon.
Meanwhile, online business owners should know that Gen Z anticipates using TikTok Shop the most among any generation surveyed, while Baby Boomers are expected to use the app less than anyone else to do their online shopping.
The majority of brands (87%) believe TikTok Shop will positively affect their business, while 13% do not think the offering will have any effect, and 1% think it will negatively affect their business.
Medium-sized businesses were 19% more likely than small businesses to believe that TikTok Shop will positively affect their business, and were also 5% more likely than smaller businesses to include TikTok Shop in their marketing plans, and willing to invest 69% of their marketing budget.
In November, TikTok invited select U.S. brands to participate in the stateside launch of Shop -- which appears on brand profiles within the app, offering users the ability to browse products and even make a purchase without leaving TikTok.
Eligible American brands were able to sell products via in-feed videos, livestream videos (“LIVEs”) and a product showcase tab.
In December, Amazon began rolling out “Inspire,” a TikTok-like shopping offering made up of a short-form video and photo feed that allows consumers to explore products and ideas and shop from content created by influencers, brands and other customers.
Hmmmm ... "92% of small business owners involved in the study plan to include TikTok in their 2023 marketing strategy".
Put another way, Tick Tok will be virtually ubiquitous in small business in a recessionary period.
Given that there are 33.2 small businesses in the US (SBA) that indicates 30.5m small businesses will be Tik Tok users. Let's see at the end of the year.