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Twitter taps big retailer for launch of new livestream shopping feature

Twitter has teamed up with Walmart for the social media company’s first live shopping event.

The shoppable “Cyber Deals Sunday” livestream on iOS and desktop will kick off at 7 p.m. ET on Sunday, November 28, with entertainer Jason Derulo hosting a 30-minute variety show featuring electronics, home goods, apparel, seasonal décor, special guests, and more.

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Twitter's new livestream shopping platform.

Twitter says that as you watch one of its Live Shopping streams, you’ll be able to do things like explore the shoppable banner and shop tab on the livestream’s page, and also engage by posting tweets about what you’re watching.

You can also toggle between the latest tab and the shop tab throughout the duration of the livestream, and view it on the merchant’s website via an in-app browser so you can keep up with the broadcast while doing other things such as making a purchase.

Twitter said in a message posted online that livestreaming on its service “gives businesses the power to engage with their most influential fans, and adding the ability to shop into this experience is a natural extension to attracting and engaging with receptive audiences.”

William White, Walmart’s chief marketing officer, said the retailer has been “focused on charting new territory in shoppable livestreams” and through Twitter will be able to “meet customers where they are.”

In more developments related to Twitter’s e-commerce ambitions, the company also revealed that it’s expanding its shop module test to more brands following a limited launch last summer. The module appears as a carousel just below a brand’s profile and can be populated with a selection of its products.

Twitter will also start testing the Twitter Shopping Manager, a feature designed to help merchants get started with shopping on the site and described by the company as a “one-stop shop for managing how [products] show up on Twitter.”

Other social sites such as Facebook, TikTok, YouTube, and Pinterest are already exploring similar shopping features based around livestream formats, so it’ll be interesting to see whether Twitter can bring anything new to the table and make a success of its own effort.

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