YouTube is planning to introduce shopping functionality to its TikTok-like Short videos as it looks to offset the revenue losses it is observing from a decrease in ad spending among recession-wary customers.
The video streaming platform is initially testing the feature with select creators in the U.S., allowing them to tag and sell products from their own stores.
“Viewers in the U.S., India, Brazil, Canada, and Australia can see the tags and interact with them and we’ll continue to bring tagging to more creators and geographies,” a Google spokesperson told Reuters.
YouTube introduced its short-form video service in March 2021 to compete against TikTok, which had more than 80 million users last year.
The company is also piloting a new commission structure for influencers who choose to sell products in their short-form videos. Creators already get 45% of the revenue that is generated from ads that are featured between the Short videos on the platform.
Last year, the company’s CEO, Susan Wojcicki, revealed that the platform had paid more than $30 billion in influencer payments over a three-year period. In addition, the number of new channels that joined the company’s Partner Program, which enables creators to earn advertising revenue, more than doubled in the year 2020 alone.