Counterfeiting is a deep-rooted problem difficult to eradicate. Even for renowned ecommerce platforms like Amazon, where millions of brands are constantly exposed to this conundrum that, to some extent, seems hard to steer away from. With this in mind, the tech giant created the Amazon IP Accelerator as part of its Brand Registry program.
If you’re an Amazon seller seeking to join the Brand Registry program quicker, this blog post might be of your interest.
What Is Amazon IP Accelerator?
As its name suggests, Amazon IP Accelerator aims to speed up the process of obtaining intellectual property (IP) rights to better protect a brand’s name and reputation.
This does not mean you will get your trademark faster; it means that you don’t have to wait until you’ve received your trademark for Amazon to accept you into the Brand Registry program.
In 2017, Amazon launched an entire arsenal of tools to make driving sales for third-party sellers a lot easier, with a view to protecting their brand’s intellectual property: Brand Registry.
However, to some sellers, obtaining their trademark registration could take up to a year.
Therefore, in October 2019, Amazon disclosed 11 American law firms to help its sellers obtain intellectual property rights and trademark protection in a practical and easy way.
With the undertaking that this well-curated network of reliable IP law firms – with high-quality trademark registration services – would benefit small and medium businesses, allowing them to legally safeguard their brand at an affordable price.
How Does the Amazon IP Accelerator Work?
As previously mentioned, the great thing about this feature is that you can get accelerated access to the Brand Protection Program in Amazon’s stores.
Once your trademark application has been filed by one of the law firms from Amazon, your brand can remain protected for months, or sometimes years, before their trademark registration officially issues.
It’s very easy to sign up:
- Go to https://brandservices.amazon.com/ipaccelerator
- Click on the ‘Get started’ button.
- Choose the country you’re in, where you want to sell, and the IP Accelerator service.
- Choose an option from the list of law firms. You can click on any firm to read reviews from other Amazon sellers and get in touch with one of their lawyers directly.
Why Should You Opt for Amazon Brand Registry’s IP Accelerator?
We strongly recommend joining the Brand Registry Program to any seller new to the platform; but what exactly are the benefits of the IP Accelerator?
Here is a quick list:
- Brand Protection – Brand Registry provides a range of ways to protect your brand from black hat sellers on Amazon.
- A+ Content – This feature will allow you to expand your listing and create persuasive sales messages with images, copy, and video.
- Test Management – You’ll be able to run split tests of your A+ Content to optimize its potential.
- Amazon Storefronts – You’ll be able to create an exclusive online store for your brand within Amazon.com. This content will potentially attract more shoppers. One of the many advantages that this service has is that you can link the content in your store to any of your sales channels. You can also optimize your Store by using insights about performance, campaigns, traffic, and sales.
- Amazon Posts – This tool, available only for Amazon vendors at the moment, focuses on brand-shopping and replicates the look and feel of a social media feed. Allows you to publish brand-curated content that can be linked directly to their product detail pages where customers can buy your products.
- Amazon Attribution –You can track your off-Amazon marketing and to know exactly which pieces are working.
- Amazon Live – You’ll be able to make, post, and promote your own QVC style videos.
Trademark Costs Through Amazon
Amazon doesn’t make any profit from connecting businesses with their list of approved law firms. The IP Accelerator is completely free.
However, you still need to pay for the lawyers and the process itself.
Amazon did set a cap on the fees of the law firms it selected. The approved law firms negotiated with Amazon the following “Maximum service fees”:
- A thorough brand search of Trademark Office records for relevant pending applications or registrations = $500
- A comprehensive brand review including Trademark Office records and unregistered uses = $1800
- Filing a US trademark application = $600 (plus government fees or approximately $275)
How to Trademark A Brand?
In case you’re new to the trademark process, it’s worth pointing out that Brand Registry is not the only way you can get your brand trademarked.
A US trademark application can take from 6-12 months to get approved. That is, assuming that everything goes smoothly with your application. If there is any issue, it could take way longer.
Basically, there are two ways of doing it:
Option 1: Cost effective, but slow – File your own US trademark application. Like we mentioned, it takes up to a year, at least. The good part is that your only expense is the $275 government-filing fee.
When you opt for this process, you’ll have to assign your products to a specific class. If your brand has products that are covered by more than one class, or may have in the future, you’ll have to decide if it’s worth filing your trademark under each class at $275 per class.
Option 2: Easier than A US Trademark – Amazon has stated that if your trademark is registered with the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO), you just need to send the number registered with your country’s IPO office. They also accept trademarks issued by government trademark offices from Brazil, Canada, Mexico, Australia, India, Japan, France, Germany, Italy, Spain, Turkey, Singapore, the United Kingdom, the European Union, and the United Arab Emirates.
So you don’t have to file for a US trademark to be accepted. Some of those other countries have way faster application times.
Recommended: Selling on Amazon: Steps to Effective Trademark Registration
Be Prepared, Applications Can Be Denied
With legal matters, it is always best to play it safe.
You can be part of the Brand Registry program once your trademark application has been submitted. But, it’s important to keep in mind that if your application ends up being denied, you will no longer have access to brand protection features linked to that application.
Therefore, don’t rush into making a decision. Seek for legal advice first!
Who Are the Law firms?
Amazon based their IP law firms selection considering experience, expertise, and customer service.
The law firms have agreed to provide the standard services involved in obtaining a trademark registration at competitive, pre-negotiated rates.
These law firms know all particularities of IP like the back of their hand. They can save sellers both money, and time. An adequate, well drafted trademark application can significantly reduce the time required to secure a trademark registration.
Once you’ve decided to work with one of this law firms, you can hire them to provide other IP-related services, such as filing design patent applications, copyright applications, and broader IP protection strategies.
This is a simple way to get tailored solutions for your brand.
However, there are no pre-negotiated Amazon fees. So, the costs of those additional services will have to be agreed upon between the business and the law firm.
Click here to see the list of law firms available for the Amazon IP Accelerator program.
The Brand Registry program is a tool that will definitely drive sales. The list of features it provides will boost your online presence and reach potential buyers. Not joining because of a lack of time to deal with trademark application filings is no longer a problem. Using the IP Accelerator is a guarantee to gain access to the Program quicker and to get your trademark in a more effective way, without mistakes.
Although there are certainly less expensive ways to get your trademark, Amazon’s IP Accelerator will most likely save you time. And with all the benefits that come with being part of Brand Registry, it’s worth giving it a go!