Will a TikTok-like video feature make a grocery app go viral?

Discussion
Sources: Weee; App Store
May 25, 2022

Short videos like those found on TikTok are a major source of entertainment today, especially for generations Gen Z and younger. Now an online grocery startup is utilizing the short, user-generated video model on a platform of its own to get customers engaged with its products.

Weee, an online grocery platform that specializes in hard-to-find Asian and Hispanic cuisine, encourages its customers to upload short recipe/favorite product videos so that the customer community can view them using the app’s TikTok-like functionality, according to CNBC. Shoppers can buy snacks and ingredients on display in those videos directly from the app.

The startup recently brought on film director John M. Chu as the chief creative officer. Mr. Chu is considering adding other creative and immersive features to the app, such as song playlists to accompany particular recipes, and follow-up emails detailing the history of a product after purchase. The app has a selection of more than 10,000 products. The company ships fresh groceries in 18 states and shelf-stable ones to the entire continental U.S.

Others in grocery have been working on finding ways to leverage shoppable video as customers get more comfortable with the technology.

Late in 2021, regional grocer Albertsons launched a partnership with tech platform Firework to make shoppable short-form videos available on the grocer’s websites, with an eye toward eventually enabling livestream grocery shopping.

The TikTok platform in particular has proven capable of giving retailers a bump if they can hitch a promotion to the right meme.

For instance, early in the pandemic when brick-and-mortar retailers had to close their doors to the public due to nationwide lockdowns, mom-and-pop candy retailer Candy Me Up was able to save and even boost its business using TikTok. In March of 2020, the store owners started a TikTok account and began posting short videos of themselves playing around in the store. They also posted a video of themselves doing the then-viral Jelly Fruit challenge, which helped sell a pallet of 1,200 difficult-to-find Jelly Fruit candies. While the retailer had built an Instagram following over years, it quickly established a TikTok following of more than 40,000 users.

DISCUSSION QUESTIONS: Do you think the inclusion of TikTok-style, user-generated videos on a platform like Weee will boost engagement and sales? Do you expect large numbers of retailers to incorporate TikTok-style user generated videos as part of their product descriptions?

Please practice The RetailWire Golden Rule when submitting your comments.
Braintrust
"I’m not sure this will be the key to their success or failure, but it’s a clever and on-trend way to stand out in a crowded online grocery landscape. "
"Pre-filled grocery list, themed dinner parties, a playlist — can you just send someone over to cook it?"
"It’s a smart strategy for a targeted customer cohort who is interested in a niche set of products."

Join the Discussion!

5 Comments on "Will a TikTok-like video feature make a grocery app go viral?"


Sort by:   newest | oldest | most voted
Jenn McMillen
BrainTrust

Pre-filled grocery list, themed dinner parties, a playlist — can you just send someone over to cook it?

Keith Anderson
BrainTrust

I’m not sure this will be the key to their success or failure, but it’s a clever and on-trend way to stand out in a crowded online grocery landscape. And given the centrality of food culture to their offering, short-form video makes a lot of sense.

Patricia Vekich Waldron
Staff

It’s a smart strategy for a targeted customer cohort who is interested in a niche set of products.

Craig Sundstrom
Guest

This seems to be a classic niche player, so to succeed it needs to get the message out as to what’s it’s all about (IMHO the name doesn’t do that very well).

I think the approach has some promise, but it’s still iffy: will the platform attract sufficient interest and — most importantly — if it does, will people make the connection between the content and “Weee”s products?

Brad Halverson
Guest

Another great way of promoting, telling stories about key products and promotions in the store. Many grocers can easily integrate this into already established marketing channels. They are easy to produce. For customers, the videos can be fun, short, and without worry of long sales pitches.

wpDiscuz
Braintrust
"I’m not sure this will be the key to their success or failure, but it’s a clever and on-trend way to stand out in a crowded online grocery landscape. "
"Pre-filled grocery list, themed dinner parties, a playlist — can you just send someone over to cook it?"
"It’s a smart strategy for a targeted customer cohort who is interested in a niche set of products."

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