Learn TikTok For Dropshipping
Written by Deimantas Brandisauskas
Today we’re going to cover the TikTok platform and how we can leverage it to start & scale a dropshipping business. While TikTok is hot right now, and a ton of businesses are starting to realize that they can start and leverage this platform cheaper than on Facebook or Instagram, while getting similar or even better conversions and results.
TikTok is taking the social media world by storm right now. Because of how easy it's to consume content on this platform, every business owner starting to consider TikTok as a viable option to drive traffic to their business.
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How Does TikTok Work?
We’re fairly confident that almost everyone reading this already knows what TikTok is and how it works, but for those of you who aren’t really following all the trends in the social media space, we will briefly talk about it.
In short, TikTok is a social media platform where you can post all sorts of video content by creating that content within their app. You can add sounds, music, effects, etc. Very similar to what Instagram Reels are, or even Snapchat. Nonetheless, TikTok is the hottest popular social media platform as of right now. Meaning, you probably don't want to miss out the being on this platform.
Who's TikTok Audience?
One of the most important things to understand is social media platform specifics, so you could get a better understanding of the audience, its (possible) needs, and have a better grasp on what this audience wants as in the next step we will talk on how to create content on TikTok.
That being said the TikTok audience is fairly young, and 49% of its users are within 18-24 years of age, and only 1% of users are within 13-17 years of age, while the remaining 50% are from 25 years of age to 55+. The TikTok age range is quite broad but it clearly tells that not only young people are using it, which is a good sign for us, marketers and business owners.
Another interesting piece of data is that TikTok as a platform ranks 2nd by consumer spend (right after Tinder) which basically means that its users tend to spend a lot of money on the platform. It’s ranking above YouTube, Disney+, Netflix, etc.
Nevertheless, these are only cold-stats that only give us some grasp on what to expect on this platform, what are the benefits, disadvantages here, but the main thing is that it’s truly worth it to dive deep into TikTok and see whether your own brand will work on this platform.
Spotting Trends on TikTok
Really, the easiest way to spot trends on TikTok is to just use the app.
After just spending half an hour on TikTok you will get a really good grasp on recent trends, what are the most popular sounds and music, if any challenges are trending, etc. Just by exploring the platform, doing some searching, or scrolling through the main feed will give you a lot of bonus points as you will soon be going to see how other brands are using the app for their own advantage.
look for any repeating patterns with music, actions, or text in the video. If you hear a sound you haven’t heard before or see someone lip-syncing something that seems to have a theme, tap on the sound at the bottom of the video. This takes you to a page that lists the number of videos using that sound. You can see the original date and other videos using that sound ranked by popularity.
After all of this, it's time to create your video that you can either post right away on TikTok, or just use later as your video for any promotional purpose (like sending it to the influencer or creating your first TikTok ad).
How to Create Amazing Content for TikTok?
To get the best results from a trending video, you need to make it fit into your niche and brand and put your stamp on it. And in general, it doesn’t really matter whether you will post content to try to get viral, or use that video for your ads or influencer posts.
And here we've compiled 8 steps to create share-worthy content on TikTok:
1. Order the product for yourself. This is how you’re going to make unique content that people haven’t seen before. And get ready to record a video for your product.
2. Make sure that within the first 2 seconds of your video you are already making it as engaging as possible, so set the tone of it as early as possible.
3. Make sure that the video length is under 15 seconds. The shorter the better, but if you’re trying to promote a specific product, 15 seconds will be enough for that.
4. Use trending music or sounds that are currently trending on TikTok. You can do this simply by scrolling through the home page on TikTok. Nothing fancy.
5. Tell a story by simply showing why your product is great, what are the main features, or how people can use the product.
6. Make sure you’re using captions to explain the product, or how it can be used. We strongly advise you to have some sort of caption at the beginning (or the opening frame) so people are already caught on watching it further, and not moving on to the next video.
7. Use your own voice to narrate the video. For example, if you're selling some sort of moon lamp, you can use your own voice to talk about how it works, and what are the main features of the product.
8. Finally, make sure to add relatable hashtags to your video so people can find them if they are going to use the "Search" tab on TikTok.
If you don't want to use native TikTok app features to record and edit the video, you can use an app like InShot which is absolutely free and has great features to compile a short video for TikTok.
Influencer Marketing on TikTok
Now you have your own video created and the next step is to either just post it to your feed (we highly recommend you to do that right now), but if it misses becoming viral you can use TikTok influencers to promote your product.
This is really simple to do as you will need to just contact a profile on TikTok and ask them to promote your video. Tell them that you’re running an eCommerce store and you have this amazing product that you think their audience will really like!
Make sure that your message is short and sweet, and that you're being straight to the point.
For the video, you can either use your own video that you created previously or better yet, ask an influencer to shoot a video for you.
Influencers know best what type of content works great for their audience, and the only thing you will need to do is to send a product to their address. You can simply do that via Amazon if your product can be found there, so they will get the product faster and record the video within a couple of weeks.
And to find those influencers is really easy - simply scroll through your TikTok feed, see what influencers are posting there, and contact them with their rates.
How to Find Winning Products on TikTok
We’ve already talked about influencers on TikTok, how to find and contact them, as well as how to create your own videos, and what’s important in your video. Great!
But what if you don’t have a product yet that you’d like to promote (or create a video around it), or maybe you just want to make sure that the product itself is going to work on TikTok (since TikTok audience is a bit different than on Facebook or Instagram).
No worries, it’s quite straightforward to find great products on TikTok, and here are 3 different methods that are going to help you find those products today:
1. Just scroll through the TikTok discover page, see what’s popping, and eventually, you will get some trending videos where some sort of product is being advertised. Save that product, check their website, and like it, so you can come back and add the product to your store.
2. A little bit less time-consuming method to find great products to sell is by using relatable hashtags that could be used by profiles who are sharing products. A couple of examples for such hashtags are #amazonfinds, #productfinds, #aliexpress, and anything else that would be related to product compilation profiles. This is a great way to perform product research and you can even filter down videos by date and popularity, to find trending products.
3. Finally, you can simply combine a couple of methods into 1. This is where you can use a spy tool like , find a product there, and enter it in the search bar on TikTok. This way you can check if the product has some sort of audience and whether people are posting any content related to that specific product.
TikTok Ads for Dropshipping
Let's talk about TikTok advertising.
Facebook Ads are still the most popular way to run paid traffic to an eCommerce store. Nevertheless, with the current updates with iOS 14.5, it became a bit harder to run ads, track performance, and target different audiences.
And that's why in this episode we decided to cover TikTok Ads really briefly.
For the case of this live stream we’re going to give you some basic steps to launch your first ad on TikTok, and if you like it, do let us know in the comments section below if you'd like to see more advanced strategies in regards to TikTok Ads. And here are the 4 steps to launch your first TikTok Ad.
1. First you will need to create a TikToks Ad Account
This is where you will need to create a brand-new account as your regular TikTok account will not work. Simply go to and click on the red “Get Started” button.
On the next page enter your information and simply proceed with questions that TikTok is going to ask about you and your business. Really simple and self-explanatory.
2. Create a TikTok Ad Campaign
Now, once you have set up your TikTok Ad Account, the next step is to create your first Ad Campaign where you're going to run your ads.
If you have run a Facebook Ad before, you will quickly start to understand the terminology and how everything works here. However, creating an Ad Campaign means that you’ll be creating a new ad where you will target specific demographics of people, as well as advertising your product URL and adding your ad creative (video).
This is as simple as going to your TikTok Ad account and creating a new “Conversions” based campaign. Why conversions? Simply put your goal is to get sales (not traffic, not engagement, or anything else), so just choose “Conversions” and proceed to the next step.
3. Set Your TikTok Ad Placements, Details, and Targeting
The next step is to create an ad group for your campaign and choose your placements and targeting. And the main important parts here are:
Make sure to create a pixel so you'll be able to track all your sales, visitors, and more
Set your Optimization Event to Conversions (we want conversions not traffic)
Set your placement to only TikTok (uncheck everything else)
- Location: We recommend to only choose "United States"
- Gender: No limit
- Age: 18+ (since this is the age when people can start buying stuff online)
- Set your Languages to English, since we only want English-speaking users to see our ad
- In the “Interests” section just select the interest that is related to your product niche. On TikTok interests are very broad and they are nothing compared to what Facebook gives you.
- Budget: minimum $20/day (as TikTok doesn’t allow a lower amount)
- Cost Cap: this is where you will need to play around with it as this is where you will set how much are you willing to spend per customer. If your product price on your store is $20 and your product cost on AliExpress is $5, just set the ‘Cost Cap’ to like $10 and see how it goes. If it doesn’t spend at all - just increase the bid until $15 (your gross margin).
4. Import/Create Your Video
And the last step is to import (or create) your video. This is a very simple part as your most important thing is your actual video. Your caption doesn’t really matter too much but makes it all about the main feature of your product. Set the "Call To Action" to “Shop Now” and you’re good to go!
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And that's it for today. Hope you got a little grasp on how TikTok works and why it's super-important to get on the TikTok train before everyone starts jumping on it.
If you'd like to learn more on TikTok, do let us know in the comment section below! 👇