Even for the biggest and most powerful businesses Amazon can be intimidating. Figuring out how to keep control of your brand on the platform is tricky but things have gotten a lot easier since the launch of Amazon Brand Registry in 2017.
Whether Amazon is one of your main channels or not the Amazon Brand Registry is definitely something worth signing up to. So let's take a look at who can apply why you should apply and how much it costs.
Amazon Brand Registry is a programme which gives brand owners more control over their products and trademarks on Amazon. It is the easiest and most practical way to protect your intellectual property on the platform.
But those who sign up also gain access to tools which help with everything from the prevention of counterfeit sales through to the promotion of their brand. It should be an essential feature in every Amazon strategy for brands.
To be clear the Amazon Brand Registry can't help you prevent unauthorised third-party sellers from listing your products on Amazon.
However it will allow you to manage listings so that customers are only presented with accurate product information. This allows you to protect your brand's reputation. But there's a lot more to the programme than just that.
Here are the biggest Amazon Brand Registry benefits you'll be able to take advantage of:
When you sign up to Amazon Brand Registry you'll be asked some questions about your business. Amazon then uses this information to automatically remove content that it thinks is inaccurate or infringes on your intellectual property.
According to Amazon brands who sign up report a 99% reduction in suspected infringements.
Amazon's proactive approach is pretty convenient but brands also gain access to search tools which allow them to find and report suspected violations as well. You can search using words or images. Then you can monitor ongoing cases in your dashboard.
By joining Amazon Brand Registry you also gain access to Amazon's two anti-counterfeiting programmes: Transparency and Project Zero.
These use automated store scans and product serialisation to prevent counterfeit sales. There's even a self-service tool which lets verified brands remove counterfeit listings by themselves. So far just over 10000 brands have signed up.
Amazon Brand Registry can help you to build your brand's presence too. Once your account is verified you'll gain access to useful tools like:
You can grow awareness of your brand and its products on Amazon by creating Sponsored Brand Ads.
These are much more extensive than regular product ads. They usually feature a logo which links to your Amazon storefront a custom headline and a selection of products from your range.
Because these prominently placed ads aren't available to third-party sellers they should be a key part of the Amazon advertising playbook for brands.
Once signed up you'll be able to view brand analytics in your seller account.
This provides insights into how Amazon shoppers are searching for your brand as well as their demographics and behaviour. You'll also find item comparison reports and alternate purchase reports so you can see how competitors are performing.
You can also take advantage of Amazon Attribution which allows you to measure and quantify the impact non-Amazon ads are having on your sales.
All this information allows brands to make informed business decisions and improve their advertising ROI.
Amazon Brand Registry is free but to sign up you'll need to own a registered trademark. If you haven't already got one you'll have to pay to register one.
The cost will depend on the country where you register as well as the type of products you sell.
Amazon only recognises trademarks issued by government trademark offices like the USPTO in the US. So if you want to join the Brand Registry in multiple marketplaces you'll need to register an active trademark in each country. It's also worth noting that your trademark needs to appear on your products or packaging in order to join the Amazon Brand Registry.
Because the process is complicated many brands enlist the help of a trademark attorney which will add to the cost. If you're going this route it's worth noting that brands who hire a law firm through Amazon's IP Accelerator can gain access to the Amazon Brand Registry before their trademark application is fully approved. This can save months of waiting.
Most of the tools that become available when you join the Amazon Brand Registry are free too. But brands that want to take advantage of Project Zero's serialization service will need to pay a fee.
Go to the Brand Registry website and click 'Enroll now'. You'll then be asked to choose a country and to sign into your Seller Central or Vendor Central account.
Make sure you sign into the relevant seller account as all the extra features and tools will be applied to this dashboard.
To ensure you're eligible to apply you'll be asked about your brand name and whether it features on your products. You'll also be asked about your trademark including its name registration number and the trademark office that issued it. (Eligibility requirements vary from country to country so you may be asked slightly different questions.)
If your trademark is image based you'll need to upload a copy of it too.
You'll then be asked about distributors manufacturers product codes and the categories your items fall under. This will help inform Amazon's search for false listings.
The form features lots of boxes to tick so the application shouldn't take long.
Amazon will send an email to the rights owner that is listed by the trademark office. This will include a unique code that needs to be submitted under the 'Case log' section of your account.
Here you can also view the status of your application. Approval should only take 24 hours.
Signing up to Amazon Brand Registry costs nothing but you'll gain access to some powerful tools. Amazon is consistently bigger and better features too. To date over 350000 brands have registered. If you have an active trademark you should register too. It's key to creating a winning brand strategy on Amazon.