TikTok Aims to Blend Content and Commerce With ‘Shopping Ads’

TikTok, shopping, ads, brands, social commerce

TikTok has introduced “Shopping Ads,” which the social media platform said is designed to help brands “meet shoppers wherever they are in the purchase journey” to boost demand and sales.

According to a Thursday (Aug. 18) blog post, the solution comes with three offerings brands can adopt and combine. The first option, a video shopping ads function, lets brands place “hyper-relevant, shoppable videos” on the For You page, encouraging users to check out a company’s products. That offering is now available for testing worldwide.

Additionally, “LIVE Shopping Ads” are designed to drive engagement from the For You page to a brand’s LIVE moments and showcase their products to shoppers who are more likely to buy. This service is available for testing in places where TikTok Shop is available, including the U.K., Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam. Invited accounts in the U.S. can also participate.

Finally, the “Catalog Listed Ads” service lets brands promote their “product catalog at scale with new placements across TikTok,” with no video assets needed. This service is available for testing in the U.S. and for advertisers that target the U.S.

The news comes one day after reports that Amazon was testing a TikTok-style feature on its app that shows customers a video and photo feed of products.

Read more: Amazon Hopes to ‘Inspire’ Consumers to Shop TikTok-Style

The portal is being tested under the name “Inspire,” and shows users a feed with a stream of images and videos of products. From there, shoppers can like products, comment on them or buy them instantly.

An unnamed source told The Wall Street Journal that a handful of Amazon employees can see the test. Daniel Buchuk, a researcher with Watchful Technologies, told the Journal that Inspire “could become the kind of really sticky social media way to browse.”