Social media platforms have evolved into indispensable tools for businesses, offering unique avenues to connect with audiences. Among the plethora of platforms, TikTok has emerged as a global sensation, captivating millions with its short-form, visually engaging content.
In Australia, TikTok is establishing itself as one of the most popular social media platforms, beating out WhatsApp, Twitter (or X as it’s now known), and LinkedIn in terms of monthly usage, meaning many Australian businesses are embracing the platform as a marketing tool.
That said, when it comes to navigating TikTok for business, there’s still a lot of uncertainty and confusion about how to use it in the right way. Utilize the platform effectively, however, and TikTok can be a great place for ecommerce businesses to get discovered.
Here’s all you need to know about using TikTok as a marketing channel for ecommerce ventures Down Under.
Can TikTok work for businesses?
Since its international launch in 2017, TikTok has rapidly gained popularity worldwide. Its distinctive feature of allowing users to create, share, and discover short, engaging videos set to music has proven to be a game-changer in the realm of online content.
What distinguishes TikTok is its capability to make content go viral often at an unmatched pace compared to other platforms. Although it may initially feel overwhelming, just as opting to learn a language enhances your understanding of different cultures, mastering TikTok can open your eyes to a whole new realm of social media for your business, potentially providing a vital boost to your ecommerce venture.
As of 2023, TikTok boasts a massive user base in Australia of over 8.5 million daily users, giving you a huge potential market to engage with. For ecommerce businesses eyeing the Australian market, TikTok’s expansive user base presents an incredible opportunity to showcase products, engage potential customers, and drive conversions — alongside the right marketing strategy, of course.
How is TikTok suited to Australian businesses?
Australia’s ecommerce landscape has experienced a remarkable upswing in recent years, and the trend is showing no signs of slowing down. As more Australians embrace the convenience and accessibility of online platforms, ecommerce businesses are recognizing the immense potential that awaits them in this burgeoning market.
Here are some ways that TikTok can suit Australian ecommerce habits:
Shift towards omnichannel experience
Modern consumers in Australia seek a seamless shopping experience across multiple channels, encompassing online websites, mobile apps, and even social media platforms like TikTok. Ecommerce businesses are aligning their strategies to provide a unified omnichannel experience to cater to these preferences.
Rapid growth in online retail sales
According to recent data, 81.5% of Australian shoppers are searching online for products or services and 76.8% are purchasing a product online — a rate still expected to grow! TikTok can be a great way of attracting those audiences looking for new products, whether that’s through the TikTok shop or directing them to your website.
Tips for Effective TikTok Marketing in Australia
Believe it or not, TikTok has become one of the most interesting and diverse shopping markets around. Not only can the platform help Australian shoppers discover new brands, but if you’re an Australian business hoping to expand, going global isn’t out of the question either.
Here are 3 tips for using TikTok to grow your ecommerce business:
- Leverage trends and challenges: TikTok is all about trends; it’s an ‘if you know you know’ kind of thing. You must stay up-to-date with the latest trends, music, and conversations so you can get involved in relevant discussions and add some personality to your business.
- Focus on short, attention-grabbing videos: Keep your videos short, snappy, and attention-grabbing. The Australian audience, like most TikTok users, has a penchant for quick, entertaining content, so aim to capture their interest within the first few seconds to ensure they watch the entire video.
- Collaborate with influencers: Partner with TikTok influencers who align with your brand and target audience. Influencers can help showcase your products or services to a wider audience, lending credibility and authenticity to your brand.
The Pros and Cons of TikTok for Ecommerce
TikTok has garnered immense popularity for its ability to make content go viral at an unprecedented rate, making it a promising platform for ecommerce businesses. However, like any other marketing channel, it comes with its own set of pros and cons that you need to consider.
Pros of using TikTok for ecommerce businesses
- Vast Reach and virality: TikTok’s algorithm is designed to amplify engaging content, potentially propelling it to viral status within moments. This viral reach allows ecommerce businesses to swiftly showcase their products or services to a vast audience.
- Engaging and creative content: The platform encourages creativity and authenticity. Ecommerce brands can create captivating, short-form videos that not only showcase their products but also tell a story or elicit emotions, effectively engaging the audience.
- Real-time engagement: Going live on TikTok offers ecommerce businesses a unique chance to engage with their audience in real-time, whether that’s answering questions or showcasing products. TikTok’s Live Shopping feature also permits businesses to tag products during their live sessions so you can convert shoppers there and then!
- Targeted advertising capabilities: TikTok offers sophisticated advertising tools, allowing businesses to precisely target their desired audience based on location (in this case Australia), demographics, interests, and online behavior. This enhances the effectiveness of attracting Australian audiences.
- Opportunity to join TikTok Shop: TikTok Shop allows verified ecommerce businesses to showcase their products directly within the app, streamlining the shopping experience for users. With a dedicated shopping tab, users can browse and purchase products seamlessly without leaving the platform.
Cons and challenges associated with TikTok
- Highly competitive landscape: The popularity of TikTok has attracted businesses from various sectors, intensifying competition for user attention. Standing out amidst the crowd requires well-crafted and unique content strategies which means testing which kinds of content work best for your Australian market.
- Limited link-sharing options: TikTok has limitations in direct link-sharing within the platform, hindering users from easily accessing external websites. This can pose a challenge for ecommerce businesses aiming to drive traffic to their online stores; however, if your audience is engaged with your brand, they’ll naturally gravitate to your site.
- Not relevant for all ecommerce businesses: While TikTok is popular among younger demographics, it is crucial to assess its relevance for your particular ecommerce audience — creating customer personas can help with this. Some products may fit better with other platforms, too — such as products with higher price tags that require a longer purchasing decision.
TikTok emerges as a compelling platform for businesses aiming to establish a stronger online presence, especially in the vibrant market of Australia. Experiment, have fun, post unique and engaging content, and you’ll put your Australian ecommerce business in the best position to grow.