TikTok announced today the launch of its Jump program, which expands the app’s potential for third-party integrations. TikTok began beta-testing this feature in February with Whisk, a recipe-sharing app, though only select creators could use the feature. Now, Jump will start rolling out to all users with an expanded slate of partners.
Jumps can only be built by third-party providers after being approved through an application process. Platforms like Breathwrk, Wikipedia, Quizlet, StatMuse, and Tabelog participated in the beta test, and now, TikTok says providers like BuzzFeed, Jumprope, IRL, and WATCHA will begin implementing their own Jumps in the coming weeks. So, an educational creator could link to Quizlet flashcards to review a concept they explained in a TikTok, or a yoga instructor could share breathing exercises on Breathwrk. For a platform that doesn’t even let all users include a link in their bio yet, this expands the existing tools creators have to engage their audience.
TikTok is positioning Jump as a feature that propels discovery. Sean Kim, Head of Product, TikTok US writes, “TikTok has become a destination both to be entertained and to learn; through TikTok Jump, we’re creating that ‘last mile’ of our community’s discovery journey and helping to spark action and deeper interaction both on and off the platform.”
But on other apps like Snapchat and WeChat, these lightweight third-party integrations drive e-commerce. Jump is similar to competitor Snapchat’s Minis feature, which lets you buy movie tickets via Atom, for example. Both Minis and Jump integrations can be built using HTML5. Meanwhile, WeChat facilitates over $250 billion dollars in annual transactions through its own mini apps – there were over a million mini apps on WeChat as of 2018.
While Instagram has been ramping up its e-commerce features on Reels, its TikTok competitor, it’s possible that Jump could later be used to sell items featured in a video. In December, Walmart piloted video shopping on TikTok, which performed well enough that they did it again in March. But for now, it seems like Jump is being used to improve user experience and deepen the platform’s relationships with third-party partners.