The move comes in an effort to boost the company’s revenue which has been hit hard by the global economic slowdown that led many advertisers to cut their ad budgets. During the third quarter of 2022 ended September 30, YouTube generated $7.07 billion from ads, down from last year’s $7.2 billion.
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According to the report, the company has rolled out the ability to shop while scrolling through Shorts to users in the United States, Canada, Australia, Brazil and India.
In addition to the new shopping features, YouTube has also started testing an “affiliate marketing” scheme for content creators that sell products on the platform via links. The company is currently testing the scheme with a small number of creators in the United States, FT reported.
The news arrives two months after YouTube announced that it would give 45% of Shorts ad revenue to content creators starting next year.
In order to expand its shopping offerings, the company also announced a partnership with Shopify in July to allow its users to connect their Shopify stores and promote their products on YouTube.
It also tested live-shopping features for a while, but couldn’t get the results it expected from western users so it’s shifting its focus to eastern markets including South Korea, according to the report.
Meanwhile, its rival TikTok also announced a similar partnership with Shopify last summer, and has just started testing its in-app shopping feature in the United States this week.