Tencent officially launched WeStore on August 20, 2020, an online store mini program on WeChat.
WeStore is fully open to enterprises, businesses, and individuals. The individual only needs the Chinese identity card information to be able to open the shop directly. After binding the bank card, the withdrawal can be completed. It supports the sale of first-hand and second-hand goods. One WeChat account can launch one WeStore store for individuals only.
Businesses can only open stores by uploading business licenses, operator information, settlement bank account information, and filling in the nickname/category of the WeStore mini programs. One WeChat account can support the opening of three WeStore business stores.
Personal stores manage the backend through the mobile terminal – WeStore Assistants; enterprises and individual businesses will manage it through a desktop computer.
Value-added service providers can directly join the developers’ program, and more service types will be gradually open. At present, the WeStore service market has opened up commodity management services such as one-click moving, product bulk management, and cross-platform management, as well as order logistics management services such as batch order processing, batch printing, and logistics.
The ability of fast building a mini store mainly meets the needs of small businesses without development ability. Businesses with personalized development needs or existing e-commerce mini programs can directly access the open components of WeStores.
At the same time, WeChat’s official team will continue to iterate and open the interface and function of components to help businesses realize personalized development while reducing development costs.
Businesses can click the button below to apply for the internal test, access to the small store open components, and enjoy the relevant services and capabilities provided by the small store.
WeChat’s WeStore looks like a simple and quick way to set up a mobile store. The Enterprise version also supports up to 500 users to co-manage the store. Merchants can set different access levels for different employees.
It also support WeStores to buy delivery insurance for users.
If the user needs to return and exchange the goods after purchasing in the WeChat shop, the deliver insurance will compensate for the logistics expenses caused by the return and exchange, and help the businesses improve the transaction conversion rate and the user’s shopping experience.
Transaction guarantee certification is another important feature on WeStore. It aims to help users find more stores with good service and bring more exposure opportunities for high-quality stores. If the service of the WeStore shop is up to standard, it can be certified automatically.
WeStore started testing in June 2020
Some WeChat Official Accounts received the invitation to try WeStore (Weixin Xiaodian) in June 2020. The invitation shows that this is a mini program for selling products that can be launched with one click and operated independently.
After opening, businesses can quickly start live streaming and sell products on WeStore. Speculations from China internet show this might be building a foundation for WeChat Channel Account (short videos).
WeChat hasn’t made Channels publicly available. This obviously carries Tencent’s hope for a share in China’s short video market as it restricts the videos to be within one minute. Check out this demo video if you are not familiar with WeChat Channels:
There’s no data yet about the user base or engagement on Channels; if taking off, it will be very powerful when combined with WeStore creating an additional e-commerce sales channel with short videos:
WeStore is a SaaS mobile store building tool created by the Mini Program team to help businesses quickly launch a mobile store. Currently, the online functions include:
- Basic store opening and operation capabilities, including product management, store operation, live broadcast management, fund management, etc.
- Good shopping experience capabilities on the user end, including product details page, shelf tools, live streaming plug-ins, etc
Currently, some third party “shopping malls” are widely adopted and help the WeChat Official Account to build shops. They can also directly provide the supply chain, product details page, and so on, which greatly reduces the difficulties of running content e-commerce.
In comparison, this WeStore currently provides very limited services. But, launching and managing a store with this mini-program is completely free.
It’s currently by-invitation-only for verified Service Official Account, which has activated the payment feature.
Weibo also announced their Video Accounts program on 22 June, currently available via by-invitation only.