Black Friday is the day following Thanksgiving in the United States, an important day for shoppers and retailers. It’s a day-long sales event, characterized by significant discounts and often considered to be the beginning of the Christmas shopping season in the U.S. It is followed by Cyber Monday, a newer term referring to the Monday after Thanksgiving focused on online shopping.
Black Friday Online
Black Friday, a day that had its roots in brick-and-mortar stores, is increasingly becoming an online experience. Shoppers buy every possible product online – from apparel and cosmetics to electronics and appliances. In recent years, the growth in Black Friday sales is through e-commerce more than physical stores. Every year, more Black Friday shoppers purchase on websites and mobile devices, and even if they go to a physical store, they usually check prices online.
In 2018, Adobe Analytics recorded a 23.6 percent increase in online sales from a year before for a total of $6.22 billion in online sales. This year sales are again expected to reach a record high.
Counterfeits on Black Friday
As manufacturers, retailers, and consumers get ready for Black Friday, so do counterfeiters. This is a time for them to take advantage of the market and sell their fake goods.
No doubt many customers look for counterfeit goods, but many others are simply confused into making purchases of fake goods on online marketplaces and social media, as well as on websites. Since Black Friday is characterized by discounts for almost every brand, shoppers may believe that even when paying extremely low prices, they are still getting the genuine product. This legitimizes fake products that sell for much lower prices.
Last November, the U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) issued a statement reminding online shoppers that some of the too-good-to-be-true deals online are actually too good to be real. As shoppers search for bargains on Black Friday and Cyber Monday, they may end up buying fake goods, especially if they are not careful and make impulse purchases.
This warning is of greater importance each year as the number of online shoppers increases, as well as the number of sellers peddling counterfeit products.
These counterfeits are a threat to brand owners, and they may also pose health and safety hazards to the people who buy and use them.
CBP views e-commerce as part of trade, working to ensure consumer safety and economic vitality. It recommends to exercise caution when buying online, especially on social media.
Protection for Shoppers
Shoppers may not be able to completely avoid fake goods. However, it is advised to look for signs that you are buying a fake product. As mentioned above, the chances of purchasing fake products is greater when the purchase is impulsive. For example, when you click on a suspicious ad and buy a product without giving the purchase enough thought. In these cases, you are most likely tempted by discounts, and fail to research the product, prices, or reviews.
In its statement, CBP has offered key signs that a website may be peddling counterfeit goods. It suggests that if all the products listed are on sale or prices are extremely low, chances are you are looking at fakes. Also, look to see if the website lists proper contact information, and check where the product is shipped from. In addition, be more careful if you are redirected to an external online payment system at checkout.
IP Protection Strategy
Brands should always work to protect their IP rights. Having more online shoppers means that protecting your intellectual property rights online is more crucial than ever. During Black Friday, brands are more vulnerable as their margins are smaller and sales may be lost to illicit sellers.
As a brand, you may give anti-counterfeiting information to help those shoppers who wish to make sure they have the genuine brand.
If you ask yourself how to protect your intellectual property online, using an anti-counterfeit agency is an easy, safe, and cost-effective choice. Wiser Market offers to monitor online channels every day to protect your IP rights, and even more so during the holiday shopping season.
It’s crucial to scan online channels for your IP, such as trademarks, copyrights, and patents. Counterfeiters may also purchase domain names that are similar to your official one, or they may have websites that replicate your brand’s website. In addition, it’s important to scan and analyze listings on major marketplaces and social media channels to protect your brand.
Wiser Market offers its clients an over 90 percent success rate.
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