So, you have been selling on Amazon for a while and have private labeled a product that you have built a brand around, you have great reviews and are on the front page and first listing of that product’s category. One day you look at your listing and notice that someone is selling a counterfeit or similar version of your private label product. They have officially hijacked your listing. You start losing money by the day and do not know what to do. Does this sound familiar?
How to Mitigate Hijacking
One of the most important things we can do to protect your brand and product is file a patent if your product is patentable, and trademark the name associated with the products. As people become more familiar with your brand they will start to associate your products to your brand. You can create a logo that is distinct from others and then file that logo with the United States Patent and Trademark Office (“USPTO“). Once your trademark is registered with the USPTO you can register it with Amazon Brand Registry. A trademark can take as long as a year to get through the USPTO and be issued a registration number, but in the mean time you can build your brand recognition by placing the logo on your packaging, website, and Amazon listings. In addition, you can place the letters TM next to your logo notifying others of your claim to that mark. As you build your brand make sure you are showing the brand name on the product listing, thee product itself, your website, and the product itself.
You can also build your brand through content used on your page, and images of your product, and videos of your product in use. This is covered under copyright law. If someone else is using your images, videos, or any other original content created by you then they are infringing on your copyrighted material.
2. Build your ecommerce
One way to get around Amazon and the rules of Amazon is build your own #ecommerce site outside of Amazon, and by so doing avoid all the individuals looking to hijack a successful product. Amazon offers a affiliate program and a private label program so that you can have customers check out completely on your site, and have Amazon fulfill their order.
3. Send Cease and Desist Letters & Contact Amazon
One way to get your point across is sending a cease and desist letter which will threaten to take their whole seller’s account down, and if you have a patent on your product you can go after damages (contact an attorney for this). In addition, you can contact Amazon about the intellectual property infringement and have them remove the seller’s product. However, you will need to have proof of intellectual property infringement and that is where filing a patent application, trademark, and copyrighting your materials comes into play. With all the protections in place you should be able to keep those hijackers at bay!