Social commerce is a wildly growing trend among modern retailers in the Philippines. It is now becoming more important for companies as it encourages and allows users to buy products and services directly from social media platforms. But how has social commerce, which is one of the fastest growing in Southeast Asia, changed?
Truelogic Managing Partner Bernard San Juan III said the rapid expansion of e-commerce this year will give marketers additional opportunities to create social commerce experiences as social media continues to develop.
“Social commerce enables businesses to reach customers where it matters and provide frictionless purchase experiences. Platforms are expanding ways for merchants to get their goods in front of consumers’ eyes,” he says.
However, San Juan underscores, “Your ability to leverage the current social commerce trends quickly and efficiently will make all the difference.”
Recently, platforms such as Meta’s Facebook and Instagram, as well as TikTok, have introduced new shopping features and partnerships to capitalize on the growing social commerce trend.
With over one billion active users worldwide, video platform giant TikTok is also reshaping the way consumers discover new products and shop. It recently launched its own marketplace, “TikTok Shop,” which provides users with a new shopping experience as well as opportunities for content creators.
It first appeared in Indonesia and the United Kingdom earlier this year, and it has since expanded to Vietnam, Thailand, the Philippines, Malaysia, and Singapore.
Users can purchase fashion, home and living, beauty, and personal care items—providing more business opportunities to local brands and small-to-medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). These products can be purchased through anchors embedded in short videos, live streams, and the TikTok Product Showcase tab, which can be found on the seller’s page.
Merchants will be able to enjoy zero commission fees on the platform for certain products, while payment service fees for payment service partners will be capped at one percent.
Meanwhile, Meta announced in a blog post last August 4 that it would discontinue the Facebook Live Shopping feature on October 1, 2022, as part of its plans to shift the focus on its short-form video feature known as “Reels.”
During the pandemic, Filipino entrepreneurs used this tool as an avenue to promote their products, broadcast conversations, performances, and virtual events.
But a week later, Facebook’s parent company, Meta, clarified that live selling can still continue through Facebook Live, but users will not be able to create product playlists or tag products on the social media platform’s live videos.
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Meta also emphasized that the Live Shopping feature, which utilizes product playlists, wasn’t even released in the Philippines and has only launched in select countries. This feature lets users upload a product playlist that they want to be featured, which will be shown when a live stream starts. If the user clicks on the image of the shown product, they will be redirected to an e-commerce platform, website, or any links organized by the host of the live stream.
To be successful in social commerce, marketers must have a clear plan and use the appropriate channels to reach their target audience. Even as brick-and-mortar reopens in the new normal, it’s become clear that “social commerce is here now, but there is more to come,” San Juan says.
If you want to learn more about social commerce, you can listen and subscribe on our Spotify, Google, and Apple accounts. Webinar episodes are free to watch on Truelogic Inc. YouTube Channel.
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