Top Tips to Protect your Brand Online During the Peak Shopping Season
Singles’ Day, the world’s largest online shopping event, opens up the most lucrative e-commerce window of the year on November 11. In 2017, the event generated online spending totalling to US$44.5 billion in China and a further $1.82 billion in the United States. Singles’ day is followed closely by Black Friday and Cyber Monday, which generated $6.2 billion and $7.9 billion in online spending respectively. Anchored by these events, online consumer spending between October and December is 25% higher compared to the rest of the year.
While retailers prepare for the holiday sales bonanza – which accounts for a third of all online spending of the year – unscrupulous counterfeiters are also getting ready to share the windfall.
With that in mind, we remind you of our five-point checklist to help you protect your brand online and prevent your customers and profits from going to the criminal organisations behind counterfeiters, especially at this time of year.
1. Secure Your IP
Establish the IP for your entire range of products, including artwork and any related-promotional material. Provide the information to brand protection programmes of online marketplaces, and follow this up with regular audits. This will allow them to quickly identify and react to IP infringements.
You should also create an easy reporting system to allow your customers and business partners to report IP infringements. A dedicated page on your company’s website would help to streamline the process. Remember to advertise the existence of the page in your promotional campaigns and literature.
2. Monitor the marketplace
Be proactive and implement a monitoring system in all the marketplaces your products have a presence in, as well as social media, websites and apps. Quicker identification of infringements will result in quicker corrective actions by marketplaces, search engines and app platforms.
Extend your monitoring to your entire supply chain, especially third-party manufacturers. Written agreements should be established with manufacturers and partners to ensure effective enforcement in the event they renegade on contracts.
3. Establish in-house legal counsel
Creating an in-house legal department can help you navigate the complex world of online IP legislation. The department will be able to provide advice on evidence gathering, local laws and enforcements, as well as any arising regulations or loopholes.
4. Work with local governments
Governments and local authorities will typically have IP protection initiatives in place to address the threat of counterfeit goods. Support such initiatives as there is strength in numbers, and relationships with local and national authorities can be leveraged into quicker enforcement actions.
5. Keep pace with technology
Keep abreast of the latest anti-counterfeit and brand protection technologies. For instance, anti-counterfeiting micro tags to help monitor and identify products on marketplaces or online brand protection software that searches, detects and enforces online infringements.
Obviously, these measures require planning and the results will take time. However, there is no better time to start than right now to protect your brand.