If your brand is selling on Amazon, you need to have a plan for handling unauthorized sellers of your products. Unfortunately, there are plenty of people who will steal your listing, undercut your price and avoid paying the commission fees.
This can be frustrating and difficult to deal with if you don’t know how to handle it. In this blog post, we’ll go over some ways to handle unauthorized sellers to get back control of your listings!
What Is An Unauthorized Seller?
An unauthorized seller is any third-party retailer on Amazon who doesn’t have any right to buy your products. Yet, regardless of the lack of permission, they still set up a sales page on Amazon and sell your products.
The worst part of unauthorized Amazon sellers is its not taking either side in these types of disputes. It can be problematic for your brand.
While Amazon will remove a listing if it goes against using a manufacturer’s intellectual property, such as using your brand name or trademarks, they won’t necessarily take action against products listed below your MAP pricing policy. This is because Amazon does not involve itself in pricing disputes, only in legal matters.
5 Ways To Handle Unauthorized Sellers On Amazon
If you find yourself in this situation, there are many ways you can deal with the problem. It depends on what you want the outcome to be. We’ve put together the top 5 ways to handle unauthorized sellers on Amazon.
1. Report Resellers Directly To Amazon
This strategy may work. However, Amazon takes a passive attitude toward disputes between brands and retailers involving such issues. The issues can be violations of brand or pricing guidelines.
One major exception to his problem is if Amazon detects that a seller is infringing a seller’s intellectual property rights. They will then remove the unauthorized listing and ban them from selling in the marketplace.
Amazon does not want to have any legal problems, so they will not host or allow any illegal content or activity that could violate the law.
Thankfully, if an unauthorized seller is trying to resell your products on Amazon, you might be able to fight for the case. That they’re infringing your intellectual property rights.
For example, suppose they’re using anything trademarked material in their postings, such as a tagline, logo, description, or any other material that belongs to you. In that case, you can claim that they’re illegally using your intellectual property rights.
However, if the issue is that they’re pricing lower than what your price levels are. Or if they’re not approved with your network of dealers, Amazon will likely not take any action on your behalf.
2. Ignore The Sellers On Amazon
Some sellers or manufacturers might choose to ignore the unauthorized sellers on Amazon completely. For example, they may have already tried to approach the seller before about the issue, and the seller ignored it. Or they might not have been able to identify the seller. At that point, they might not know what to do to protect their business.
While companies may have tried to report it to Amazon, they may end up not being able to do anything because it doesn’t infringe upon your property rights. Unfortunately, this is one of the worst choices because it’s not stopping the problem.
Instead, it’s actually encouraging these sellers to continue to violate your products. It could hurt your brand or authorized resale network.
3. Become A Restricted Brand On Amazon
As an Amazon seller, you can be a Restricted Brand. This means that your products will have strict limits on which resellers can offer your items. Unfortunately, doing this also makes it harder for your authorized seller network to list your products, which can end up creating frustration.
This might seem like a long shot, but it’s definitely worth considering if unauthorized sellers continue to infringe upon your intellectual property rights (such as using trademarked material), and this is happening over and over again. Most retailers who use this strategy deal with high-end goods such as telephones, laptops or designer bags, etc. Unless you have an extremely valuable product, you might want to reconsider this option.
4. Consider Amazon Brand Registry
If you have a high-value product, and you’re noticing unauthorized sellers are listing your inventory for sale, then this might be an option worth considering.
Amazon Brand Registry has strict guidelines to follow in order to maintain access privileges. For starters, they only allow one authorized seller per account. This means there won’t be any more confusion about who’s selling what products because it will always be clear as day when looking at Amazon’s marketplace whether or not the reseller is actually authorized by you (the manufacturer).
Plus, you’ll have control over unauthorized listings as well as tools to help enforce unauthorized seller problems before they become too big. This extra protection can be worth it if you’re unsure how to move forward.
5. Set Up An Automated Detection System
One of the best ways to handle unauthorized sellers is to start tracking your products for pricing. This type of software works by constantly monitoring your brand on Amazon at all hours of the day and providing solutions if any unauthorized sellers are found on the platform.
This will help you detect when there is an immediate problem with your products or brand, allowing you to find and take control of the situation faster than if you manually searched or just happened to fall upon it.
Will Amazon Take Action Against Unauthorized Sellers?
While you can definitely report listings on Amazon, you’ll want to remember they don’t typically get involved in these types of issues. They will only help if there is a violation of intellectual property rights or if there are illegal reproductions of your products. The basic idea is that if it involves legal issues, Amazon will help.
However, they will not protect against your own distribution or reseller policies. Instead, when you report the listing, Amazon will be looking to find violations of their own policies and will remove products if any listings are in violation.
Get Ahead of Unauthorized Sellers On Amazon Today
It’s clear that one of the most important ways to stop unauthorized sellers on Amazon is to get ahead of the problem. This means tracking down resellers as soon as they appear on the market. However, policing the platform 24/7 can be near impossible for one person or business to take on, which is why we suggest using software to help you with this process.
There are excellent solutions, such as Sunken Stone’s MAP compliance software, where you’ll be able to set up an account, answer a few questions on how you want to be alerted, and let our program take care of the rest. Once resellers are found on Amazon, you’ll receive their contact information, and the recommended following steps to take will be displayed on your dashboard.
The best part about the Free MAP compliance software? It’s completely free, so there’s no risk to you to see if it works for your business! Try it out today to get started.
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