Tencent, the maker of popular messaging app WeChat, is taking its ecommerce ambitions one big step forward today by allowing anyone to set up a store inside WeChat. WeChat first added support for mobile payments in August last year, with only a few brick-and-mortar retailers supporting it. Then the app explored ecommerce shortly after by testing out flash sales of Xiaomi smartphones. By March of this year, both offline and online purchases within WeChat went mainstream, but the eshopping was mainly limited to major brands and retailers.
Popular messaging app WeChat has taken a step forward in evolving as a platform after it opened up an option on Weixin — the version of WeChat offered in China — for official account owners to set up shop within the app. Not all users can take to selling their items on Weixin though. Only verified official accounts (which are typically brands) that have already linked up with the Weixin payments API can go on to open an e-commerce store. This means that a merchant such as Nike, which may have an official account on Weixin, can sell their items to potential customers without having to direct them outside of the app. An announcement on Weixin’s QQ page gives would-be merchants the instructions for setting up shop. It’s as straightforward as simply listing your items for sale under certain categories. After that, you can manage your stocks and monitor your sales amount all within Weixin itself.