Deepak Agarwal on the Impact of TikTok on eCommerce

Deepak “Dee” Agarwal, long-time C-suite executive, successful entrepreneur, and eCommerce industry leader, speaks on how organizations can optimize their sales and visibility through TikTok.

Atlanta, GA, 21st July 2022, ZEXPRWIREAlthough brick-and-mortar stores haven’t fully outlived their stake in commerce, their importance has quickly been overshadowed by eCommerce amplified through social media. The global coronavirus pandemic has facilitated this sudden rise in social media channels as shopping platforms, with many brands turning them into main avenues for marketing and sales. Consumers have been quick to embrace this move, enjoying the convenience of online shopping through entertainment platforms in the midst of the pandemic.

The traditional platforms of choice have been Facebook and Instagram, both of which proved reliable in helping to market brands and drive sales, but the eCommerce landscape has changed, with the popularity of TikTok significantly rising. The video content sharing app registered 136.5 million users by January 2022 in the United States alone and is only predicted to continue scaling. We spoke with Deepak “Dee” Agarwal,  long-time C-suite executive, successful entrepreneur, and eCommerce industry leader, on how organizations can optimize their sales and visibility through TikTok.

“With a substantial amount of users, the impact of TikTok on eCommerce is palpable,” notes Deepak Agarwal. “What sets TikTok apart from other social media platforms is its engagement rate, their specific algorithm that serves personalized content to each user based on previous interaction in the platform, and  the ability of videos on the platform to go viral, reaching more people than the initially targeted audience,” Dee Agarwal explains.

How eCommerce Brands Market on TikTok

Small, medium, and large enterprises use TikTok mainly to increase brand recognition and get qualified leads. Twenty percent of consumers who purchase products over social media say they do so routinely on TikTok according to Shopify, making it the platform with the highest percentage of frequent social shoppers. The following are four ways online brands are driving eCommerce success on TikTok.

Influencer Marketing

TikTok has launched the careers of top young influencers who have tens, and hundreds of thousands followers on the platform. Needless to say, these influencers hold significant power in terms of the reach of their content, and more importantly, the trust they hold with their followers when recommending products. As a result, it’s no surprise that 45 percent of brands used TikTok in their influencer marketing campaigns in 2021. 

“Paid partnerships contribute to a brand’s growth and revenue because of the exposure they receive. They’re not just reaching people, they’re reaching the right people who trust the recommendations of the TikTok creators they follow,” Deepak Agarwal points out.

Most influencers command huge and loyal followings that look forward to their content. Influencers can also make sponsored posts through TikTok in a more captivating, and authentic form by using the product or service in real-time for their followers.  

Posting Content

Brands can promote their eCommerce sites on TikTok by creating and posting content related to their products and brand, including new product releases and product displays. With consistent posting of compelling content, brands can achieve impactful engagement that results in sales. 

“TikTok is unique in that it allows brands to showcase their personalities more authentically than ever before. This helps brands not only to stand out in over-saturated markets, but also form a connection that leads to a sense of loyalty with existing and potential consumers,” adds Dee Agarwal. 

Live Shopping

Live Shopping is a livestream feature of TikTok that allows brands and retailers to tap into new audiences for their eCommerce stores, growing their exposure, views, qualified traffic, and sales. During the livestream, a pin appears on highlighted products that viewers can click to select items to purchase, making buying possible without users ever exiting the app.

“The live shopping capability is effective because it establishes a real-time connection between retailers and their audience,” Deepak Agarwal notes. “Make sure, however, to study your target audience’s active hours on the app using the TikTok analytics tool to determine the best time to livestream.”

Be a TikTok eCommerce Partner

TikTok has partnered with eCommerce platforms like Shopify and Square to facilitate in-app purchases. These partnerships are aimed at helping sellers leverage the purchase potential of TikTok.

“When you register with Shopify or any other TikTok integrated eCommerce platform, it allows you to gain new shoppers through optimized marketing campaigns. Retailers can run campaigns through TikTok Ads and attach product links to their video content,” Deepak Agarwal says.

TikTok has proven that users and younger generations are heavy consumers of video content, and will remain a valued digital marketing avenue in the eCommerce industry for years to come. Additionally, the platform has shown its commitment to helping brands thrive in the eCommerce space, and has further disclosed that it will offer more eCommerce solutions in the form of tools and integrations to improve engagement between brands and buyers.

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