Listing your brand on the Amazon Brand Registry will help to protect you from counterfeiters, copycats and cheap imitators selling on Amazon. But there’s a pre-requisite to getting on the Brand Registry in Canada.
It’s a Canadian trademark registration, or at the very least, a pending Canadian trademark application.
We’ve helped many Amazon sellers file Canadian trademark applications, and in this blog, we set out our top tips for how to trademark in Canada for the Amazon Brand Registry.
The brand name you use on products
Your Canadian trademark application must claim the brand name that appears on your products or their packaging. Not only is this an Amazon Brand Registry requirement, it’s also necessary to gain protection for your trademark under Canadian law generally. A trademark is only considered to be used in connection with products if it is physically branded on the products themselves or on their packaging at the time that the products are received by purchasers.
Keep this in mind when developing your packaging and when planning to list your brand on the Amazon Brand Registry. There has to be a connection between the name and the product at the moment it is received by customers.
Your brand name in standard word format
Your inclination may be to file a trademark application for your brand name in the stylized form that it appears on your products. You should fight this urge.
There’s a much bigger advantage to filing your trademark application for your brand name in standard word format. A word mark registration gives you protection for your name in any stylized format, whereas a logo or design mark registration only gives you protection for the name in that specific format.
There’s a couple of reasons to register your brand name as broadly as possible.
One, if your logo happens to change over time, your design mark registration may no longer protect you, but a word mark registration will.
Additionally, you will be able to rely on a word mark registration to stop competitors from using your brand name in any design format, even if it is vastly different from yours. This makes a word mark registration a much more powerful tool to list on the Amazon Brand Registry and to protect your brand name in general.
The Amazon seller should be named as the trademark applicant
The Amazon seller and the person or company who is named as the applicant for the trademark should be one and the same.
The very purpose of a Canadian trademark registration is a federal government grant of the exclusive right to use a brand name throughout Canada. Amazon relies on this grant as proof of brand name ownership, and so they need to be able to connect the trademark application or registration with the Amazon seller claiming it as their own.
The goods you sell now plus the goods you plan to sell in the future
The Canadian trademark registration process takes a ridiculously long time. Once you file your trademark application, the quickest your registration will issue is about 2.5 years. If there are objections raised in the application process, your wait will be even longer.
One of the most compelling reasons to work with a Canadian trademark agent in filing your application is to avoid objections and unnecessary delays to your registration. Our goal at Markably® is to file mistake and objection free trademark applications that sail through the application process to provide headache free trademark registrations.
Considering it takes a minimum of 2.5 years to obtain your Canadian trademark registration, you’ll want to ensure that it actually covers all the products you could be selling at that time, and not just the products that you were selling when you filed the application.
Unfortunately, you cannot add goods to a trademark application once it has been filed. You can only narrow the scope by restricting goods or deleting them all together. If you start selling items on Amazon that are not covered by your trademark application, you’ll have to file a second application and wait for that application to make its way through to registration as well.
If you would like help with the Canadian trademark registration process, Markably® is here to help you quickly and easily file your headache-free Canadian trademark application.