Livestream shopping, a trend that originated in China, has grown into a massive $512bn market, according to research firm Coresight Research. This unique form of shopping involves sellers broadcasting live videos of themselves showcasing products while viewers can ask questions and make purchases in real time.

In the US, major platforms such as TikTok, Poshmark and eBay are eager to tap into this growing market and have already started testing livestream shopping.

Small business finds success in livestream shopping

Anthony Velez, CEO of Bagriculture, a small business selling pre-owned designer handbags, has seen tremendous success in livestream shopping. Velez used to generate up to $100,000 a month across his brick-and-mortar stores in New York City, but after diving into the world of livestream shopping, he now generates up to $100,000 a day.

He praised livestream shopping, stating that its metrics exceed any other form of shopping he has seen. Velez can go live on multiple platforms simultaneously, expanding his reach and sales potential.

Projected growth and competition in the US livestream shopping market

Coresight Research originally projected that US livestream sales would reach $32bn by the end of 2023. However, the firm has revised its estimate due to recent developments such as Naver‘s acquisition of Poshmark and the introduction of TikTok Shops.

Coresight Research now believes that livestreaming sales in the US could easily reach $50bn this year alone. The firm also predicts that livestream shopping will account for over 5% of total e-commerce sales in the US. by 2026.

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Major platforms such as TikTok, Poshmark and eBay have confirmed that they are currently testing livestream shopping. eBay’s chief product officer, Eddie Garcia, expressed enthusiasm for this new way to shop and emphasised that eBay would initially focus on fashion and collectables, with plans to expand further.

Meanwhile, influencers and small business owners such as Danielle Santana are also taking advantage of livestream shopping. Santana hosts live shopping shows on Amazon and receive a commission from every transaction.

The rise of TikTok in livestream shopping

According to Coresight Research CEO Deborah Weinswig, TikTok has a significant advantage in the livestreaming battle. With its 150 million monthly active users and popularity among younger consumers, TikTok has a strong foothold in the US market.

The platform’s technological capabilities allow for targeted product recommendations to users, enhancing the shopping experience. Unlike other platforms, TikTok keeps livestreams and purchases within the app, streamlining the process for users.