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TikTok to Import Popular Social Shopping Models from China

By Ding Yi / Feb 08, 2021 06:27 PM / Business & Tech

TikTok may be eying several new features for its planned expansion into U.S. e-commerce, copying its Chinese mainland sister app Douyin’s success in online shopping despite uncertainties over its fate under the presidency of Joe Biden.

Among those features is a tool that allows TikTok’s most popular users to share links to products and automatically earn commissions on sales, the Financial Times reported on Monday, citing sources familiar with the matter.

The app owned by China’s ByteDance is also planning to roll out livestreamed shopping where users can buy goods with a few taps after seeing them showcased by TikTok stars, the Financial Times said.

The tools will put TikTok in competition with Facebook, which last year introduced tools on its photo sharing app Instagram in some countries to make it easier for users to buy goods, and a digital shopping channel on its main Facebook site.

In China, Douyin has become one of the most important e-commerce platforms after Alibaba’s Tmall and Taobao marketplaces and by allowing its users to buy products through links embedded in short videos or livestreaming sessions. Last month, Douyin launched its own digital payment tool which users can choose to make purchases within the Douyin platform.

Contact reporter Ding Yi (

Related: TikTok Owner Launches Digital Payment Service in Challenge Against Alibaba, Tencent

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