Shopify, the Canadian e-commerce platform, has signed a deal with TikTok to allow its merchants to create and show shoppable content on the video-sharing site.

Shopify said the deal would allow its one million-plus merchants to “create and connect their TikTok for Business account and deploy in-feed shoppable video ads directly within Shopify”.

Shopify, which offers a platform mainly for small and medium-sized businesses, said merchants could create shoppable ads that allowed viewers to click and buy. 

The whole process of creating video ads, running them and optimising a TikTok marketing campaign will be carried out from the Shopify dashboard by installing a new TikTok channel app, TechCrunch reports.

Merchants can use the new tool to target their audiences by gender, age, online behaviour, and video category. It will also allow businesses to monitor their campaign’s effectiveness.

Initially, the service will be available only in the United States, but Shopify indicated it would be available for the whole of North America, Europe and Southeast Asia early next year. 

The two companies “will also collaborate to test new commerce features” in coming months, Shopify said.

“Shopify has seen a lot of success in the social channels,” Suthan Sukumar, an analyst at Eight Capital, told Yahoo! News. “They already work with Instagram, they already work with Snapchat. So, this is just another extension of that. 

“And beyond that this is interesting because with TikTok it is a video-focused category,” he added. “The video category is becoming more and more important for online sellers and this is Shopify being at the forefront of innovation of this space.”

Mark Boidman, managing director and head of media and tech services at boutique investment bank PJ Solomon, told Reuters, “TikTok aggregates a massive audience for branding and as a Shopify user, you can allow third-party advertisers to use videos you upload in their advertisements.

“This is key for TikTok users who have good content and lots of followers,” he added.

Reuters also reports that US retail giant Walmart has been looking at a partnership with TikTok to connect the bricks-and-mortar retailer with younger online consumers.

Such a deal has been hampered by political uncertainty in the States, however. A US appeals court hearing is expected early next month (November) on whether the government can prohibit transactions with TikTok. This is a move the video-sharing platform says would, in effect, ban its use in the country.

Sourced from TechCrunch, Yahoo, Reuters