ByteDance's TikTok, known for its short-form videos, has made a significant move into the e-commerce sector in the US with the launch of TikTok Shop in September 2023. Currently, the US e-commerce market is led by giants like Amazon, but TikTok aims to challenge this dominance. The company has set ambitious targets for its US e-commerce operations, aiming to increase its size tenfold with a revenue goal of $17.5 billion in 2024.
This information, sourced from internal discussions and shared by anonymous individuals close to the company, indicates that TikTok is serious about expanding its e-commerce footprint. TikTok Shop integrates shopping features into its popular social media app, allowing users to purchase products while engaging with short videos and live streams. In 2023, TikTok's global gross merchandise value approached $20 billion, largely driven by sales in Southeast Asia. The platform's next strategic steps include expanding in the US and launching e-commerce operations in Latin America.
TikTok is also enhancing its appeal to US consumers by offering incentives like free shipping and subsidies for influencers promoting products on the platform. The success of promotional events like Black Friday and Cyber Monday, which attracted over 5 million new US customers to shop via TikTok, highlights the platform's growing influence in the e-commerce space. With nearly 150 million users in the US, TikTok is positioning itself as a formidable player in the online retail market.