Amazon has built one of the world’s richest companies that now does everything from produce movies to design smart assistants like Siri. The company started off as an online marketplace, and is the go-to for purchasing everything you can imagine. Amazon sells products themselves, but allows anyone to sell products on their website. This became a popular place for those in the United States to sell things like old books, but has more recently seen foreign countries, particularly China, sell thousands of products from phone cases to t-shirts.
Foreign goods on Amazon
Thanks to cheap production costs in China, you can buy $3 iPhone chargers and $2 screen protectors. This has been great for buyers, especially if you remember needing $150 of accessories with your new cellphone.
The downside to cheap products includes more knockoffs and infringing goods. Copyrights, trademarks, and patents are quietly infringed and sold at a discount from overseas manufacturers. The commerce giant has been suspending sellers for intellectual property violations, but that has not been enough.
Amazon Brand Registry
Thanks to the problem of knockoffs, Amazon is now helping sellers protect their brand with Brand Registry. Sellers can enroll to receive automated protection, better infringement reporting, and perhaps most importantly, better search result placement for their products. You send Amazon your logo, product categories, and where you sell your products.
What do sellers need to enroll in Brand Registry? A registered trademark in the United States or 11 other countries. Sorry, but trademarks in manufacturing countries like China and India are currently not good enough.
Filing a trademark in the United States
Chinese sellers on Amazon have looked to receive US trademarks so they can enroll in Brand Registry, part of a huge push for China to expand the country’s intellectual property. Merchants must use an attorney in the United States to file their trademark. This makes the process more difficult for foreign sellers. However, Brand Registry is great way for merchants to sell more and better fight infringement on Amazon.
Amazon merchants considering United States trademarks should contact a qualified US attorney regarding filing. The attorneys at Spengler & Agans help foreign and domestic entities file United States trademarks.