What is Project Zero by Amazon?
E-commerce platforms and sellers are relentless in their efforts to combat counterfeit trade. Fake goods trading accounts for 3.3% of the world’s trade, according to a study from 2019, what’s even more horrifying is that the number is on the rise and who knows what the number is now after E-commerce sales increased significantly after the Covid-19 pandemic forced the closing of physical stores.
When dealing with counterfeits, the typical scenario is: the platform receives a complaint. Afterwards, the fake item reappears on the platform. Amazon has released a tool to fight counterfeits, so this never-ending cycle might end (or be interrupted occasionally). Sellers and ecommerce consultant in all countries, be alert! Amazon has launched a new, game-changing program. Amazon Project Zero reduces counterfeit listings on the online retailer’s site using new technology.
What Is Amazon Project Zero?
A new self-service tool called Project Zero allows brands to identify their original products from counterfeit ones on Amazon’s platform, a bold move against counterfeit products on this e-commerce platform. This project helped brand alot in their amazon account management services and optimizing their listings. As Amazon shared in its message, the project’s aim is to empower brands in order to eliminate counterfeit products.
The launch of Amazon Program Zero was announced in February 2019. Amazon began combating counterfeit goods in large part because of a series of lawsuits filed by online sellers. Amazon’s handling of counterfeit products was so deeply flawed (and they armed themselves with lawsuits) that they were openly dissatisfied.
An Overview of Amazon Project Zero’s Components
Three aspects of Project Zero offer anti-counterfeiting protection. Our discussion will focus on what they are and how they can be used to detect counterfeit goods.
- Automated Protections
A machine learning-powered automated protection component scans online stores for counterfeit products and removes them. Each day, more than 5 billion listings are scanned, and suspected counterfeit listings are removed immediately without any delay. Brand data, such as logos, trademarks, and unique characteristics that indicate the credibility of a brand, is taken into consideration during the scanning process.
The automatic detection and removal of counterfeits is significantly sped up by automated protections. Comparing this automated process to reactively removing counterfeit goods based on brand appeals will drastically reduce the amount of counterfeit products.
- Self-Service Counterfeit Removal
With self-service counterfeit removal, a different facet of the counterfeit war can be streamlined. By removing counterfeit listings themselves, companies avoid reporting to Amazon potential fake goods sellers and waiting for the investigation to conclude. Consequently, the anti-counterfeiting process becomes a fast and easy process from a several-day hassle.
Amazon and their sellers have come to an agreement to share power through the new self-service tool. Listings will be controlled by brands, and brands can assist Amazon in removing counterfeit products. As a result of the ban lists, this tool will be able to identify and catch counterfeit listings to enhance automated protection efforts.
- Serialization of products
Lastly, product serialization is a distinctive feature of Project Zero, which allows sellers to register their products with a code. Using the code, Amazon can verify the authenticity of every product purchased with the code.
By serializing products, sellers can protect their intellectual property. By using product serialization services, counterfeits are detected and stopped before they reach consumers. In addition, the automated protection system will be fed the data from this service.
Essentially, the three components work together to identify counterfeits and gather information about those counterfeits to help improve the services. As the data collection increases and the innovative technology behind this project becomes more precise and effective, it will become more accurate and effective.
Project Zero membership and its automated protections as well as the self-service counterfeit removal tools are free of charge. When you choose to use the serialization service, however, you will be charged between $0.01 and $0.05 per product. Prices are determined according to the store’s volume, serialization of products is not mandatory for Project Zero members. It is possible that brands will opt to use free tools only, but if they want to ensure that their intellectual property is protected, they will not be reluctant to make the investment.
Who Can Join Amazon Project Zero?
Amazon Project Zero is currently an invitation-only program; only brands that get invited by Amazon can participate. Vera Bradley, Kenu, ChomChom Roller, and Thunderworks are among the brands that accepted Amazon Project Zero.
The number of brands that will receive invitations or the extent of the project’s reach remain unknown. All sellers who are certified on the platform will be able to access Project Zero. So the present exclusivity should be applied only during the testing phase. Brands have to meet certain requirements before they are considered for Project Zero Amazon. The criteria are as follows:
- Registered trademarks are required for brands.
- Brands must be registered with the Brand Registry.
Amazon’s Brand Registry protects trademark holders’ intellectual property rights. Aside from offering personalized product listings and better control over product listings, the service also offers accelerated ad approvals, advanced search features, and other technological features.
You should take the following steps now to begin the application process for Project Zero Amazon if you are interested:
- Amazon’s Brand Registry allows you to register your brand.
- You can join the waiting list by applying.
Amazon’s Project Zero has drawbacks
While Project Zero boasts impressive features and capabilities, it isn’t perfect. It is impossible to undermine the usefulness of Amazon’s aggressive fight against counterfeit goods traders. We should reflect on the limitations of Project Zero before finalizing its story:
- Amazon Brand Registry is only open to brands with established trademarks and the status of a potential Project Zero candidate. Therefore, trademark-free brands are ruled out of consideration for the project.
- It won’t detect counterfeits that don’t use the brand owner’s ASIN. Counterfeits that make no explicit reference to a brand’s trademarks and use different Amazon Standard Identification Numbers (ASINs) won’t be detected.
- Besides focusing on counterfeits, Project Zero does nothing about other intellectual property issues that can arise among sellers, such as trademark infringement.
Project Zero is Amazon’s answer to the growing number of counterfeits as well as the growing number of complaints. While ending the fake goods trading on Amazon can’t happen overnight, Project Zero is a big step forward to achieving a counterfeit-free e-commerce platform.
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