In the ever-expanding digital world, it is absolutely necessary to protect your intellectual property and reputation.
As one of the largest online retail platforms in the world, Amazon is a hotspot for counterfeit activity, and protecting your brand on Amazon is paramount.
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Brands can strategically track Amazon and utilize its brand protection services to combat counterfeits, unauthorized sellers, and brand infringements.
In this article, we will review brand protection services on Amazon to understand their key features, benefits, and impact on brands and consumers.
Selling on Amazon can be a great way to build your brand and grow your sales.
However, counterfeit products and unauthorized sellers pose significant threats to brands and consumers.
With the growth in online shopping, counterfeiters continuously find new avenues to exploit consumers, showing no regard for the original brands.
The alarming rise in counterfeit goods undermines brands while compromising consumer safety and satisfaction.
The problem does not end with counterfeiting. Unauthorized resellers and the gray market can negatively affect brands by offering substandard or expired products, impacting your revenue, damaging consumer trust, and resulting in negative reviews.
Start with a Trademark
Brand protection services Amazon, such as the Brand Registry program, requires that you have a registered trademark.
In the US it means registering the trademark with the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO).
Amazon Brand Protection Tools
Amazon has implemented measures to address brand protection concerns and maintain the trust of both sellers and consumers on its platform.
To protect your brand on Amazon, you can use Amazon’s brand protection services when available in the territory.
Registering your brand and using Amazon’s system is called gating.
Brand gating helps protect your brand from counterfeits, knockoffs, and illicit sellers.
With Gating, brand owners can limit the number of sellers of their trademarked ASINs and require approval before sellers can offer brand products.
Amazon Brand Registry is the first step for sellers who want to “gate” their Amazon presence.
After you join Brand Registry, the next step is Amazon seller support. You decide which products need permission from resellers by listing their Amazon Standard Identification Numbers (ASINs) so Amazon services can brand-gate them.
For brands that sell multiple products, consider compiling a list that starts with your highest-selling ASINs to your least popular items and send it to your Amazon seller support representative.
Once Amazon approves your ASIN(s), they gain better protection. As a result, if a third-party seller tries to use your ASIN, they will get blocked until they provide documentation or pay a fee.
Let’s explore some of the key brand protection services introduced by Amazon.
This is a free tool that verifies true brand owners and allows them to assert their intellectual property rights.
Once you are verified, an automated system is set to identify and prevent new bad listings from going live where customers can see them.
Brand Registry allows brands and their representatives to protect intellectual property and manage their listings.
With Brand Registry, you can report violations through the Report a Violation tool. This tool allows users to monitor, identify, and report infringements.
Once you report, Amazon investigates and acts to delete the listing if a violation is found, which brands can track on a Submission History dashboard.
It also provides enhanced control over product listings and their accuracy.
For brand owners, it provides more efficient support that helps you fix or remove listings in cases of IP infringement.
Brand Registry also has proactive brand protection features such as image and text search, global search, and predictive automation to detect potential infringements.
However, Amazon’s Brand Registry does not forbid other sellers from selling your brand or notify it in advance which sellers are approved or banned by your brand.
In addition to intellectual property-related benefits, Brand Registry allows brands to access and benefit from Amazon A+ Content, Brand Stores, Sponsored Brands, Brand Analytics, Amazon Vine, and more.
This Amazon program enables brands to combat counterfeit issues through product serialization at the individual product level.
The program assigns unique codes to products, which can be verified by customers through a mobile app, ensuring the authenticity of the purchased item.
The way it works is that brands notify the marketplace which products they want in the services and send all required product information to Amazon, which then issues transparency codes.
Now, to sell your product on Amazon, sellers need to provide transparency codes before they can sell on your listing or create a listing themselves. In addition, customers can verify that products are genuine.
Once you enroll in Transparency, product codes are valid worldwide.
Therefore, codes can be scanned in fulfillment centers with Transparency programs, while customers can scan delivered goods wherever they are.
Amazon’s Project Zero combines advanced technology with brand expertise to proactively identify and remove counterfeit listings.
It empowers brands with self-service tools, including automated counterfeit removal, a product serialization feature, and the power for brands enlisted in Project Zero to remove counterfeit listings from Amazon.
Brands can apply to take part in Project Zero.
To check eligibility, they must have a Brand Registry account and have already submitted reports of infringements through the Amazon Report a Violation Tool with at least a 90% acceptance rate.
Like Brand Registry, it is a free tool. To fully take advantage of it, it is usually best to use professional monitoring and management.
Benefits and Impact
Amazon’s brand protection services offer benefits to brand owners and consumers alike.
Here are some of the advantages of brand protection services:
- Enhanced Brand Reputation: Combating counterfeits and unauthorized sellers leads to increased customer satisfaction and loyalty. This helps build brand reputation and maintain consumer trust. When you are not proactive about gating your brand, unauthorized sellers can sell low-quality versions of your goods, damaging your efforts to build and maintain your reputation.
- Improved Customer Experience: Effective brand protection measures ensure that customers receive genuine products, reducing the risk of purchasing counterfeit or low-quality items and, therefore, improving consumer trust. Over time, consumer trust leads customers to expect a certain quality, and, in turn, the brand gains customer loyalty. With gating, brands grow the value of their intellectual property by building recognition and trust in their branded goods.
- Intellectual Property Protection: The Amazon Brand Registry plays a crucial role in safeguarding intellectual property rights. It allows for infringement detection and quick removal of infringing listings, protecting the brand and its assets.
- Proactive Detection and Removal: With Project Zero and its automated detection systems, Amazon provides brand owners with tools to actively identify and remove illicit listings. This proactive approach helps mitigate the impact of counterfeiters and remove infringing products from the marketplace.
- Increased Sales and Revenue: Fewer counterfeits and unauthorized sellers mean more sales and revenue for genuine brands. Due to Amazon’s size and popularity, limiting the number of unauthorized sellers of your product on Amazon makes a difference.
- Sustainable Growth: The combination of strong brand protection measures and consumer trust enables brands to thrive in the online marketplace, fostering long-term sustainable growth.
Wiser Brand Protection Services
Amazon’s brand protection measures are helpful, but there are still issues of counterfeits and illicit sellers in the marketplace, and even more so in territories that do not have some or all of Amazon’s brand Protection Services.
The unprecedented number of fakes sold online calls for tech and expertise on Amazon and globally.
Wiser Market offers a complete suite of brand protection services on Amazon, from registering your brand on Amazon Brand Registry to providing 24/7/365 monitoring and protection from sellers abusing your IP rights.
We detect, analyze and enforce your IP rights, taking down IP-infringing products and blocking unauthorized sellers from selling on your listings.
As part of our services, we work with Amazon on your behalf, representing you as your online brand protection agency to ensure your brand is protected while you focus on growing your Amazon sales.
When you work with Wiser Market, you can see the results of your decision as you stop others from stealing what’s yours.
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How to check if my ASINs are brand gated?
After applying to Amazon brand services, you can check to see if the listings are brand gated. To do that, use an account that belongs to a different seller account to search for your ASIN(s). Now click on the “Sell on Amazon” button. If the product is gated, you receive a message that says you need approval to list products, plus a request approval button.
What are the key benefits of the Amazon Transparency Program?
- Authenticity: Transparency ensures that only genuine products are shipped to customers through Amazon, whether your brand uses FBA or items are shipped directly.
- Customer Engagement: Customers can use the Transparency app or the Amazon Shopping app to scan the unique Transparency code and verify the item they purchased is genuine while also accessing more brand content.
- Improved Revenue: Counterfeit products are your competition. With no counterfeits, you sell more.
- Enhanced Reputation: When you protect your brand, you have fewer fakes, negative reviews, and sub-optimal customer experiences, resulting in brand reputation.