What SMEs Need To Know About Selling on TikTok

Cameron Fleming | 26 October 2022 | 2 years ago

TikTok Shop

TikTok has become one of the hottest social media platforms in recent years, and it offers a unique opportunity for small and medium-sized businesses to reach a new audience. TikTok can be used for direct sales through TikTok Shop, as well as for promoting other products or services which can generate revenue. With over a billion active users worldwide, TikTok provides vast potential for businesses in every industry to enter new markets and make some serious money, often with little or no investment.

In this article, we will explain everything you need to know about selling on TikTok, from how to set up a TikTok Shop to other ways of making money from TikTok.

What is TikTok?

TikTok is a short-form, video-sharing app that allows users to create and share 15-second videos, on any topic. It was originally launched in September 2016 by the Chinese company ByteDance and was known as Douyin in China. The app quickly gained popularity in Asia and was launched internationally under the name TikTok in 2018. Today, TikTok is one of the most popular social media apps, with an estimated 800 million active users worldwide.

While TikTok originally started out as a platform for sharing funny videos, it has since evolved into a creative outlet for users of all ages and interests. TikTok users now create videos on a wide range of topics, from dance and comedy to beauty and fashion. The app has also become a powerful marketing tool, with brands using TikTok to reach new audiences and promote their products.

how can SMEs make money on tiktok

How can SMEs Make Money on TikTok?

There are various different potential revenue streams on TikTok for SMEs to capitalise on. These include:

Sponsored Content

For businesses and SMEs, TikTok provides an opportunity to reach out to new audiences and generate revenue through sponsored content. Sponsored content on TikTok works in a similar way to other social media platforms such as Instagram and Facebook. Businesses can create short videos that are then promoted to users who are likely to be interested in the product or service.

Sponsored content works by businesses paying TikTok to show their videos to users who fall into a certain age range, location, or interests or by ads popping up in between users’ videos. The cost of sponsored content varies depending on the reach and engagement that businesses want to achieve

The key to generating revenue from TikTok-sponsored content is to create high-quality videos that promote the business in a positive light. Additionally, it is important to ensure that the videos are targeted at the right audience and that they are placed in relevant categories. By following these tips, businesses can maximise their return on investment from TikTok-sponsored content.

However, it is important to note that there is also a potential downside to this method of marketing, as some users may find sponsored videos intrusive and annoying. Additionally, if a business does not carefully select its target audience, it may end up wasting money on advertising that will not reach its intended customers. Overall, though, TikTok-sponsored content provides a great opportunity for businesses to reach out to new audiences and generate revenue.

Driving Traffic to Websites and Social Media Platforms

Another way that SMEs can make money on TikTok is by driving traffic to their other social media platforms and websites. By creating compelling content that encourages users to click through to their other platforms, businesses can generate a significant amount of additional traffic – and potential revenue.

To ensure that your audience visits your others platforms, there are three things to focus on: content, content and content! Your videos need to be interesting, engaging and relevant to your target audience. If you can get users hooked on your content, they’ll be more likely to follow your call to action and visit your other platforms.

Of course, there are potential downsides to this approach as well. For example, if a business’s TikTok content is not up to par with its other platforms, it could reflect poorly on the business as a whole. Additionally, if a business focuses too heavily on driving traffic from TikTok and doesn’t provide value for its audience, the business risks losing followers and damaging its reputation. Nonetheless, when used correctly, TikTok can be an extremely effective way for businesses to increase their reach and drive sales.

Affiliate Links and Marketing

SMEs can also make money on TikTok through affiliate links and marketing. Affiliate links are hyperlinks that direct users to a product or service. When someone clicks on an affiliate link and makes a purchase, the business that owns the link earns a commission. This is an easy way for businesses to generate revenue from TikTok without having to create their own products or services.

There are several ways to maximize returns from affiliate marketing on TikTok:

  • First, choose products or services that are relevant to your target audience.
  • Second, make sure your affiliate links are well-placed and visible in your videos.
  • Third, track your results and adjust your strategy as needed.
  • Finally, be transparent with your audience about your use of affiliate links.
The potential downside of this method is that some users may be turned off by the presence of affiliate links in videos. It can be annoying or even misleading if a video appears to be promoting a product or service but is actually just an affiliate link. However, as long as businesses are transparent about their use of affiliate links and only promote products that are relevant to their audience, this should not be a problem.

SME and TikTok influencer marketing

Partnerships with TikTok Influencers

TikTok influencer partnerships are a great way for SMEs and businesses to make money on the platform. By partnering with popular TikTok users, businesses can reach a wider audience and promote their products or services in a more innovative and engaging way.

Typically, influencer partnerships involve the business paying the influencer to produce sponsored content, which is then shared with their followers. This can be an extremely effective way of marketing, as it allows businesses to tap into the influencer’s audience and create a genuine connection with potential customers who will be also likely to trust the recommendations of someone they already follow and admire.

The key to a successful influencer partnership is to choose an influencer who is relevant to your business and whose audience is likely to be interested in your products or services. It is also important to negotiate a fair price with the influencer and to make sure that all aspects of the partnership are clearly defined from the start.

There are a few potential downsides to this method that you need to be aware of:

  • First, influencer partnerships can be quite expensive so businesses need to be sure that they are getting value for money.
  • Second, there is always the risk that an influencer’s audience will not be interested in your business, no matter how well-matched you think they are.
  • Finally, there is a chance that an influencer could damage your business’s reputation if they produce poor-quality content or behave inappropriately while representing your brand.
Overall, though, influencer partnerships offer a great opportunity for businesses to reach new audiences and grow their brand on TikTok.

In-App Purchases

SMEs can also generate income on TikTok through in-app Purchases. This can be done by setting up a Shopify account and then linking it to their TikTok profile. Shopify allows businesses to create and manage their own online stores, and the platform integrates with TikTok, making it easy to sell products directly to users.

In order to be successful, businesses need to create engaging content that drives traffic to their Shopify store. They also need to make sure that their products are well-priced and offer good value for money.

There are a few potential downsides to this method of using TikTok to generate revenue. First, it can be time-consuming to produce high-quality content. Second, there is no guarantee that users will actually purchase products from businesses’ stores. However, if done correctly, this can be a great way for SMEs and businesses to make money on TikTok.

What is TikTok Shop?

TikTok shop was set up in 2020 as a way for businesses to generate income on the social media platform. It allows businesses to sell products directly to users, who can then purchase them without leaving the app. It was launched in September 2020 in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, which has resulted in a dramatic increase in online shopping.

TikTok shop is a convenient way for businesses to reach a wide audience, and it offers a number of advantages over other potential revenue streams. For example, it is more likely to result in sales, as users are already engaged with the content on the app and are therefore more likely to make a purchase.

Furthermore, TikTok shop is less time-consuming than other options such as setting up an e-commerce store, and it requires no upfront investment. Businesses simply need to create a short video showcasing their product and then leave the rest to TikTok.

Set Up TikTok Shop

How to Set Up TikTok Shop

  1. Create a TikTok Business account – This is separate from a regular TikTok account and will allow you to access TikTok’s business tools and insights. Once you’ve done that, you can then start creating your shop. To do this, go to the ‘Create’ tab and select ‘Shop’. From there, you’ll be able to set up all the different aspects of your shop so that it’s ready to start selling products.
  2. Add products to your shop – TikTok supports a wide range of product types, including physical goods, digital products, and services. To add a product, simply click on the ‘add product’ button and fill out the required information. This may include the product name, price, description, and shipping details. You can also add up to five photos or videos of the product to help TikTok users get a better idea of what they’re buying.
  3. Set up payment methods – TikTok offers a number of different payment options, including credit cards, debit cards, PayPal, and Apple Pay. You can also provide discounts and coupons to encourage users to make a purchase.
  4. Start promoting your shop – The best way to do this is by creating engaging content that will drive traffic to your shop. For example, you could create a video showing how to use your product or you could do a giveaway where the prize is one of your products.
  5. Start selling! – Once that is all done, you’re ready to start selling products, services and prescriptions on TikTok.

Are there any Potential Downsides to Using TikTok Shop?

There are a few potential downsides to using TikTok shop that business owners will need to consider:

  • It can be time-consuming to produce high-quality content. For example, making sure that your videos are well-edited and include relevant keywords will take up a significant amount of time.
  • Some industries are not well-suited to selling products on TikTok. You have to consider that the majority of TikTok users are young people who are not necessarily in the market for certain products or services.
  • There is no guarantee that users will actually purchase products from businesses’ stores. This means that there is some risk involved in using TikTok shop as a revenue stream, especially if you are investing a lot of time into it or relying on it as your sole source of income.
SME TikTok success

Final Thoughts

There are various ways for SMEs to sell products and services and make money in other ways on TikTok. From influencer and affiliate marketing to selling products directly to customers on TikTop Shop, the app provides a number of opportunities for businesses to reach a wide audience and boost their revenue. When using TikTok or any social media platform to promote or sell, it is always crucial that SMEs consider their target audience and what type of content would be most engaging for them. By taking the time to conduct thorough market research, businesses can ensure that they are using TikTok in the most effective way possible to achieve their desired results.

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