Douyin Sets Up Internal E-Commerce Team for Alcoholic Drinks

Douyin, the mainland Chinese version of ByteDance’s TikTok, is setting up a self-operated e-commerce team focusing on alcoholic drinks, domestic media outlet Tech Planet learned on Friday. The new team will launch livestreaming shopping and short videos, which will be featured on Douyin. An individual in charge of Douyin e-commerce responded that in order to further expand the product SKU (stock-keeping unit), the platform will make various business attempts with self-operated brands of alcoholic drinks.

The team is now recruiting people familiar with alcoholic drink procurement and sales on e-commerce platforms. The alcoholic products to be sold on Douyin e-commerce will not include Maotai, a famous distilled Chinese liquor. In addition, this new business sector for ByteDance will be affiliated with Beijing Chaoniang Muyin Trading Co., Ltd.

According to data by iiMedia Consulting, a digital marketing agency, the market for alcoholic drink retail will be about 116.75 billion yuan ($18.35 billion) in 2020. It is estimated that the market scale will reach 136.31 billion yuan in 2021. Douyin chose to sell alcoholic drinks directly on the platform, showing its desire to obtain a portion of this market.

In addition, the number of content hosts selling alcoholic drinks on Douyin is proliferating. Data from the “2021 Liquor Industry User Insights and Content Ecology White Paper,” released in April last year by ByteDance’s Ocean Engine shows that there were nearly 1,500 content creators with more than 10,000 fans involved in wine tasting and teaching on the Douyin platform in 2020, an increase of 329% from 2020.

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Consumers also show great enthusiasm for alcoholic drinks. On Xiaohongshu, a lifestyle-sharing digital platform in China, the number of recommendation notes for “slightly tipsy” and “girls’ alcoholic drinks” reached over 210,000 and 100,000 respectively. On Twitter-like social media platform Weibo, impressions of the topic entitled #Alcoholic_Drinks_Suitable_for_Girls reached 150 million, causing near 97,000 people to comment. The above-mentioned report shows that in December 2020, there were more than 67 million users on Douyin interested in alcoholic drink consumption, an increase of more than 62% year-on-year.