Advertising Age reports that "TikTok Shop U.S. is exploring ways to help more brands sell their products and services directly through the app, including possible partnerships with retailers to deliver perishable items such as groceries.
"Mike Westgate, head of home, living and retail for TikTok Shop U.S., said that the popular social-sharing app was looking at ways to 'forge partnerships with retailers to do deliveries to support perishable products' … Westgate’s comments come as brands increasingly look to test social shopping, but, so far, TikTok Shop is mostly for companies that have a direct-to-consumer business and can ship physical products.
"TikTok piloted its in-app shopping features - which allows brands to tag products within in-feed videos and livestreams that users can click on and purchase within the app - with marketers including PacSun and Revolve before rolling it out broadly in September."
Some context from Ad Age:
"Last year, TikTok started hiring to fill positions in global fulfillment centers it is building out in a seeming attempt to further rival e-commerce giant Amazon. TikTok takes care of logistics including picking, packing, shipping, warehousing, inventory management, customer service and processes returns - 'taking care of the entire fulfillment process end-to-end,' its website reads - but those capabilities are currently not fast enough to deliver perishables.
"A service that would deliver groceries seems similar to Amazon Fresh. TikTok first experimented with selling groceries on its platform as part of an initiative it launched in the U.K. in August 2022."
- KC's View:
The core TikTok audience may not be the center of the target when it comes to grocery sales, but there are enough of them to be of interest to retailers, and TikTok would be a fascinating bridge.
I still think there is an even shot that TikTok may have ownership challenges in the US, as our government seems rightfully concerned about influence and dictates of the Chinese government.
But TikTok has the customer base and the resources to move the needle if it gets the opportunity.