What is the Best Length for Your TikTok Videos?

August 29, 2022
by Alyssa von Bornhoft

Video-based social media platform TikTok, has taken social media by storm. It’s risen quickly to the 6th most-use social media platform in the world since its release in 2016. Currently the most downloaded appand has been for the last 3 years in a row – reaching 3 billion downloads in July 2021, up from 2 billion less than a year earlier. Since January 2014, the only other apps to reach the 3 billion mark were Facebook, Messenger, Instagram and WhatsApp. This feat made TikTok the first non-Facebook app to hit that benchmark. It’s now available in over 150 countries and has over 1 billion monthly users globally – 90% of who use the app every day.

The app has become a key player in the consumer path to purchase, particularly for product discovery. Naturally, this makes the platform a goldmine for reaching potential consumers who may be interested in your e-commerce brand. More businesses are turning to TikTok videos to grow their e-commerce brands. The platform allows them to start conversations and trigger user reactions with videos instead of using text and images alone. Below we’ll take a look at how using TikTok can help grow your e-commerce brand. And, we’ll examine the ideal length of TikTok as it relates to achieving your marketing goals.  

Why Your E-Commerce Brand Consider TikTok Videos

  • 30% of Gen Z’ers prefer using TikTok for product research. In fact, TikTok is now more popular among Gen Z users – born between 1997 and 2012 – in the United States.
  • TikTok is the most engaging of all social media apps, boasting an average user session of 10.85 minutes. That’s more than twice as long as the second most engaging app, Pinterest (which has an average user session of 5.06 minutes). 
  • TikTok is the top app for consumer spending. Consumer spending on the platform increased from $1.3 billion in 2022 to $2.3 billion in 2021. That’s 77% in just one year! 
  • 67% of users say TikTok inspires them to shop, even when they weren’t planning to.
  • 49% of TikTok users have purchased something after seeing it on TikTok. #TikTokMadeMeBuyIt
  • In 2022, 24% of marketers considered using TikTok as an effective way to reach their business goals, compared to just 3% from a year earlier.
  • 47% of TikTok users are between the ages of 10 and 29 years old. Last year, that age group made up 62% of TikTok’s user base. This is a clear sign that the platform is aging up, with 42% of users now aged between 30 and 49 years old.

TikTok is no longer just a platform for younger audiences. It’s now cross-generational, allowing your e-commerce brand the opportunity to reach audiences from all age groups. There is a ton of opportunity to build your business and TikTok is the place to be right now. This is especially the case if your e-commerce brand’s target audience includes anyone between the ages of 18-60 years old. 

The Length of TikTok Videos: A Brief History

When TikTok hit the scene, the app wouldn’t allow users to post videos longer than 15 seconds. The length of videos that could be uploaded on the platform has steadily increased over time and in February 2022, TikTok announced:

“We’re always thinking about new ways to bring value to our community and enrich the TikTok experience. Last year, we introduced longer videos, giving our community more time to create and be entertained on TikTok. Today, we’re excited to start rolling out the ability to upload videos that are up to 10 minutes, which we hope would unleash even more creative possibilities for our creators around the world.”

The truth is, the majority of TikTok users enjoy creating content just as much as they like consuming it – with 83% of TikTok users having uploaded their own video content. But, although TikTok now offers the ability to post much longer videos, it doesn’t necessarily mean you should. In fact, one study showed that 50% of TikTok users found videos longer than one minute to be stressful. And, a third of users watched online videos at double speed. So when it comes to promoting your e-commerce brand on TikTok, bigger doesn’t always mean better. 

So, What is the Best Length for Your TikTok Videos?

Well, a quarter of the highest performing videos on TikTok are between 21 and 34 seconds long. TikTok discovered that videos between 21 and 34 seconds are optimal for both conversion rates and impressions. Videos within this timeframe showed a 280% increase in conversion and a 2% increase in impressions compared to videos under 21 seconds or over 34 seconds long. They found that videos between 10 and 20 seconds long helped boost impressions, but as an e-commerce business trying to convert users, targeting the higher conversion rate should be your goal.

While videos between 21 and 34 seconds long have been shown to perform better, it’s important to mention that the first few seconds of your e-commerce brand’s TikTok ads and videos are vital to their overall success. Studies show that over 63% of all videos posted where e-commerce brands highlight their key message or product within the first 3 seconds have the highest click-through rate compared to those who don’t. While it’s important to make good use out of the entire length of your TikTok videos, remember to get to the point right off the bat.

Is Your E-Commerce Brand Ready to Create TikTok Videos?

Of course, when it comes to marketing your e-commerce brand, there’s no one-size-fits all. There are, however, best practices that your e-commerce brand can follow when creating TikTok videos that will help attract the right people to your business and keep them interested in your content. Studies might show that 21 to 34 seconds is ideal, but you should experiment with different lengths to find the one most suitable for your content and target audience. Use TikTok analytics and stay on top of your progress. This allows you to measure a ton of different metrics including, but not limited to, organic metrics like weekly and monthly growth, total likes, and paid metrics including Reach, CTR and CPA. By tracking the right metrics, you can determine which video lengths are working well for you and which could use some tweaking. 

TikTok is quickly becoming the go-to platform for e-commerce brands to promote their services. It definitely deserves a spot in your marketing strategy – and we can help you get started. By keeping your videos short (or long!), sweet and to the point, TikTok’s staggering potential is sure to help you reach countless potential consumers. Are you ready to attract them to your business and achieve the goals most valuable to your e-commerce brand?

About the author: Alyssa has spent the majority of her career specializing in the Accounting sector of Affiliate Marketing. With a persistent urge to learn new things, Alyssa returned to McGill University in Montreal, Canada in her 30s to study Public Relations and Communications Management where she discovered a passion for writing – and she hasn’t looked back!

Her interests include adventuring in the great outdoors, cooking up a storm, and not sitting still. She aspires to take a million pictures of her Siberian Husky/Saint Bernard mix, Jax, and is probably getting pretty close.

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