TikTok has made several efforts in recent months to turns its browsers into shoppers and recent trends indicate some early signs of success.
A heart-shaped Kate Spade bag that recently went viral on TikTok quickly sold out, for example.
“We were able to harness that. The bag sold out. We got it restocked. We’re learning how to engage that community better and better,” Tapestry CEO Joanne Crevoiserat said in an interview on CNBC’s Closing Bell after the company announced that it had beat analysts’ expectations for its holiday quarter.
TikTok has also become an important tool for driving sales for retailers from across the spectrum. Take the toy industry, for instance. With playdates and school routines off the table, parents are spending more on toys and they are increasingly turning to TikTok for inspiration.
Toy company Zuru also saw a significant increase in sales of its Surprise Mini Brands, which is an unboxing toy that features miniature replicas of routine household products such as Dove shampoo and Jell-O gelatin.
“A combination of fan-generated and TikTok influencer videos ignited the craze,” Renee Lee, vice president of global marketing at Zuru, told CNBC.
“TikTok is unique in the fact that a user does not require a large following in order for a video to go viral,” Lee said. “So, we actively look for super creative, brand fans to work with versus just looking at high-profile influencers.”
The popularity of TikTok is not going unnoticed by larger retailers either. For example, Walmart sought to acquire a minority stake in TikTok’s U.S. operations late last year.
“If you’re watching a TikTok video and somebody’s got a piece of apparel or an item on it that you really like, what if you could just quickly purchase that item?” Walmart CEO Doug McMillon said. “That’s what we’re seeing happen in countries around the world. And it’s intriguing to us, and we would like to be part of it.”