TikTok, TikTok: Why 2021 is the Year of Live Commerce

After the kind of year the retail industry just endured, who knows what’s around the corner? Well, Walmart does. The retail giant recently gave everyone a glimpse of what’s next: live commerce, or shoppable livestreams.

Walmart recently conducted a live streamed shopping event with TikTok in which trendy TikTok creators such as Michael Le showcased their favorite Walmart fashion finds on Walmart’s TikTok profile. Even better, shoppers could buy those exact products  via mobile checkout. Although Walmart and TikTok did not disclose sales figures, the event was noteworthy because it represents  how live commerce is taking hold. 

Consider some of these eye-popping facts:

No wonder Walmart wants in. But why is live commerce catching on? A couple of reasons stand out:

  • First, the obvious: online commerce as a whole is skyrocketing. As IBM recently reported, the pandemic accelerated a shift to e-commerce by five years. 
  • Live commerce taps into a human need to buy from real people just like we usually do in stores. For years, that desire to connect with other people has fueled the success of popular home shopping channels on television, such as Home Shopping Network and QVC, where hosts showcase products for sale live. These live shopping experiences give people both convenience and the human touch. 
  • We’re getting more comfortable with platforms such as Zoom that basically act as de facto live streaming experiences to manage our lives during a time of social distancing.
  • Live commerce often involves influencers, our modern-day digital celebrities. This is especially the case in China, where key opinion leaders such as Viya Huang Wei can move products like nobody’s business. Hanging out with influencers is also a natural pastime of the surging Gen Z population. According to research firm Coresight, nearly half of Gen Z purchase decisions were based on social influencers’ recommendations, compared with 26 percent of the general population. The Gen Z factor alone may attract brands like Walmart, which is eager to court Gen Z.

For those reasons, live commerce is having a moment. And 2021 is barely under way.

What Brands Should Do

Here’s where Isobar enters the picture. We can help businesses develop and execute a live commerce experience that builds brand love. We know that brands need to:

  • Do your homework if you work with an influencer. A superstar influencer may or may not be the right match for your brand. You may find it more cost effective to work with micro influencers who have strong followings among different geographic regions, niche industries, and apps.
  • Live commerce requires creative expertise and event planning that capitalizes on the distinct attributes of digital, such as building awareness for the experience with social media and rolling it out glitch-free.
  • The “commerce” part of live commerce requires a lot of heavy lifting behind the scenes to ensure that the checkout process works seamlessly.

To learn more about how to create a memorable experience with live commerce and many other digital experiences, contact Asher Wren.

More News

| 7th Jan 2021

Brace Yourselves: 2021 Will Change Everything about Digital Creative

If 2020 was about brands trying to win a race to create the best digital experience possible, 2021 is about rethinking the digital experience completely.

| 16th Dec 2020

Why Agencies Need to Be Maestros of Innovation

It’s time for the services industry to pivot. Again.

| 13th Nov 2020

What Black Friday? Why Singles Day Matters

Singles Day may provide interesting lessons for US retailers looking ahead to the 2020 holiday shopping season.