Category Archives: Uncovered

How to Fight Amazon Rights Infringement Claims

Best practices for Plans of Action and DMCA counter notices

This post is by Chris McCabe, a former Amazonian and founder of ecommerceChris.com, with Suzi Hixon, an Amazon FBA seller and attorney specializing in intellectual property law at The Private Label Lawyer.

Chris McCabe’s first post on this topic, False Infringement Claims are Rife on Amazon, was published on Web Retailer in January.

The incidence of rights infringement claims at Amazon spiked upward recently, as many parties have realized how easily this can be abused to remove unwanted sellers from a desired listing.

In fact, Amazon’s policy teams have moved much more aggressively to suspend sellers, instead of warning them and removing the ASIN in question from their listings.

The net result of these actions is to drive up the number of suspended account appeals. These appeals require Plans of Action to address not only how you’ll resolve the current dispute with the claimant, but also how you’ll avoid such rights infringement cases in the future.

That’s the bad news. The good news is that the increased friction around notice claims has resulted in new methods to prevent notice abuse. Amazon is now taking this subject very seriously and no abuse of Amazon’s systems or policies will be tolerated going forward.

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The Top 5 Amazon Seller Concerns Trending for 2017…

…and the top 5 things you need to know about each of them.

This post is by Austin Fisher, Product Manager for SellerEngine’s product research scouting app Profit Bandit. He also works with SellerEngine Services, helping Amazon sellers with listing and account issues.

For those of us who have dealt with Amazon for a while, it was only a few years ago that selling through the ecommerce giant seemed like the wild wild west.

Anyone could start selling and making money. There weren’t many third-party software or service providers, and – most importantly – there weren’t so many rules, regulations and rapid-fire changes to watch out for.

Today it feels quite different. Amazon selling, FBA, retail arbitrage – they’ve all hit the mainstream now. And Amazon has got a lot more proactive in regulating their marketplace.

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False Infringement Claims are Rife on Amazon

How unethical sellers abuse the system with bogus IP, trademark, copyright and patent reports

This post is by Chris McCabe, a former Amazonian and founder of ecommerceChris.com. For Amazon sellers, having their merchant account suspended means losing time and money trying to get back in business. ecommerceChris shows sellers how to keep their accounts healthy, or, if the worst should happen, how to get their account back from a suspension.

UPDATE FEB 2017: A follow-up to this post, How to Fight Amazon Rights Infringement Claims, covers Amazon’s changing attitude to false claims, how to create a Plan of Action, and how to file a DMCA counterclaim.

As demonstrated in a recent CNBC article about Samsung sales, Amazon scarcely has any process in place to vet disputes over sales rights or to filter counterfeit claims from alleged rights owners.

In order to meet a minimum liability standard, Amazon only acts upon properly submitted and completed notice claims of infringement. They notify specified marketplace sellers which party reported them on what listing, and how to reach that would-be rights owner via email. The rest is up to you.

Unfortunately, now word is out that anyone could submit a form without any true vetting or verification process on the other side. Investigators merely check the form for completed content in all the right spaces. They don’t independently verify that any of the information is actually correct, or valid. The rights owner makes a legally-binding declaration in the form, and signs it. What if you can’t locate a party who submits a false form?

If anything there does not square with reality, then it’s up to you to chase them down.

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7 Ways Brands and Manufacturers are Failing Online Retailers

This post is by Trevor Ginn, the founder of VendLab, a retail consultancy which helps retailers and suppliers create, optimize and manage their product data. Trevor is also the founder of online retailer Hello Baby, which has been selling baby, toddler and nursery products worldwide since 2007.

Ecommerce has been around for over twenty years, but in many ways the manufacturers of products which are sold online are yet to adapt.

Online retailers have different requirements from bricks-and-mortar shops, yet the products and service they receive from their inventory suppliers (brands, manufacturers, distributors and so on) are generally still tailored to retail stores.

Here are seven ways suppliers fail online retailers, which I have seen time and time again. Be on the lookout for them!

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The Negative Review Spike and Ten Tips to Get More Festive Cheer

This post is by Jordan Garner, Director of Marketing at Trustpilot. 20,000 new reviewers join Trustpilot each day, making it one of the world’s largest online review communities. Trustpilot has over 20 million reviews of 130,000+ businesses and counting.

The holiday season, for most online retailers, is the busiest time of the year in terms of sales revenue. But new data shows that it’s also when the proportion of negative customer reviews is at its highest.

Having a rock solid strategy to proactively collect and manage reviews is critical at all times of the year, but is certainly most urgent during the holidays simply because of the sheer quantity of feedback that comes in during this time.

It’s not all bad – the increased quantity of reviews also gives sellers a unique opportunity to turn 2016 holiday wins into 2017 sustained growth. By proactively collecting tons of feedback, retailers can use these reviews to boost sales moving forward, as well as make sure any new customers are having the best possible experience so they will come back for future transactions.

Let’s look at the numbers…

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