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While TikTok Shop delivers strong early results, questions remain

The news: TikTok Shop has rapidly emerged as an important channel for some merchants thanks to strong early results, per Ad Age.

  • TikTok users have made over 300,000 purchases from Tarte Cosmetics. The brand saw several products sell out after the platform launched its Black Friday discounts on November 14.
  • Gen Z-oriented fashion brand Cider sold over 100,000 items on the platform, with a two-piece knit dress accounting for roughly a third (over 34,000 units) of those sales due to a handful of viral videos featuring the product that have been viewed over 80 million times.

As of October, TikTok Shop was selling about $7 million worth of products a day in the US, with a goal of reaching $10 million a day by the end of the year, per The Wall Street Journal.

Beyond the platform: PacSun has had a very different experience from Tarte and Cider given that it has only generated about 10,000 sales on TikTok Shop.

  • But the platform played a large part in PacSun’s massive 580% spike in gross merchandise value between October and November, the retailer told Ad Age.
  • As a result, it prioritized regularly updating its TikTok Shop catalog with new products to ensure affiliate creators can post about them.

The big caveat: It is still very early days for TikTok Shop.

  • Much of the early strong gains stem from a combination of key shopping days such as Black Friday and Cyber Monday, and steep TikTok-subsidized discounts.
  • For TikTok Shop’s momentum to continue it will have to ensure that the platform has a broad enough scope that merchants (and consumers) don’t associate it with the types of counterfeit and low-quality goods that make up a large share of current sales.

Go further: Read our TikTok Commerce 2023 report.