One of the biggest issues in the Amazon marketplace is the volume of counterfeit products that are being sold. Reports indicate that over the last year, Amazon has spent more than $500 million dollars to fight fraud, abuse and counterfeit products and has over 8000 employees working to keep their platform a safe and legitimate place for customers to buy products.
Counterfeit products can have a variety of negative effects for both you, the brand, and for the customer. Counterfeit products are generally made with cheaper, more generic, untested materials which can be unsafe or harmful, but at the least will almost certainly affect the performance of the product. While all sales of counterfeit products are strict diversions of revenue, as sales go to the company making the counterfeit units, rather than to you as a brand; it can have an even greater impact long-term as poor customer experiences can push customers to pursue other products to solve their problems.
Despite counterfeiting being such a tremendous problem on Amazon today, there is a way for you to protect your brand from counterfeit products being sold that’s fairly easy and the most effective strategy possible.
Are you ready?
Ok here it is:
Sell your own products on Amazon!
It’s that simple.
By selling your own products you’re able to deliver the highest quality products and the quality of customer experience that will keep them coming back for more. Yes, there are times when a brand cannot or does not sell their products themselves. When you have a third-party seller promoting and selling your products on Amazon, you should be reviewing your listings, as well as placing orders to verify that the products are real, that they’re being packaged correctly, and are still delivering the desired experience for the customer.
When allowing third-parties sell your products on Amazon, it is key to make sure that these other sellers are signing the right documentation with your brand, stating where they’re going to sell it, how they’re going to carry your products, and compliance provisions, so if they don’t represent your brand and products correctly, you have the right to remove them.
It’s important that you are diligent with this oversight including:
- Reviewing all orders being placed;
- Reading the reviews and product questions;
- Monitoring how your products are being sold
You do this to ensure your brand and products are being promoted and represented the appropriate way to keep your customers’ experience positive and your brand integrity intact. So, the more third-party sellers you have, the more homework you have. This process is well worth it as it serves as a measure to protect your brand.
So, what do you do in the unfortunate case that you do find a product that’s counterfeit?
You have to report it to Amazon and prove that it’s fake. Upon investigation, Amazon will take appropriate action to remove that seller. In our experience at Spotlight Brand Services, this can be a pretty frustrating process as many times another fake seller will pop-up on the listing causing the process to be repeated over and over.
At Spotlight Brand Services, we understand the negative effects counterfeit products have on your brand and understand how this process can be extremely tedious and tiring. While were work diligently to resolve these situations for our clients and have a very high degree of success, we also work with brands on taking a proactive approach that prevents many of these problems before they start.
One of the core processes to protect the brands we work with is to work with border patrol to establish very specific criteria for importing your products. We ensure the trademark is registered properly in the shipment lanes. So, the next time the product come through border patrol, if it wasn’t directly from an authorized shipping lane, border patrol would stop that product and confirm the order to ensure its authenticity.
As an ambassador for your brand, working to assist you in realizing your full potential, requires proactive steps that support the growth of your brand, and the integrity of the products you create. By having this proactive process in place, it ultimately allows your team (and ours) to focus on what matters most, generating more sales, creating a positive customer experience and to be constantly moving forward.
The products you sell and the experience you provide for your customer is a direct representation of your brand and putting these proactive measures in place, with a comprehensive review and monitoring program will produce extremely positive results for your business.
If you’d like more information or assistance in learning how to protect your brand from counterfeit products, click the button below to schedule a FREE Amazon Product Listing Audit and one of our Spotlight Brand Services Brand Optimization Specialists will meet with you to help you start growing your business on Amazon.