What does Amazon consider to be a “branded” product?

We get a lot of complaints about hijacking sellers – sellers who take over a listing and sell generic or in some way inauthentic merchandise on a private label seller’s branded listing.

However, there is a lot of misinformation out there about what it means to be a branded product. Contrary to what we see from clients, buying an item, buying a new UPC and putting a new sticker on it does not make it a private label product, and Amazon will not protect your claim to sell the product exclusively. Also, threatening other sellers with a cease and desist letter because you have a different UPC than they do on a generic listing is pointless – they can just ignore you, and Amazon will do nothing.

So, what does Amazon consider to be a branded product?

First, it must be branded on the item itself, not just the packaging. Think of the last branded item you bought from the store and note how it was branded.

Generic cell phone cases
High quality branded cell phone case

Second, it must have real packaging. This means FFP (Frustration Free Packaging) with a real box or polybag with an insert or other sticker decal that was designed for your brand, not just a UPC/ASIN sticker.

Not branded packaging
High quality branded Frustration Free Packaging

Third, you must have high quality, high resolution pictures showing your product, the brand on that product, and the packaging with the branding on the packaging.

Low resolution says “Hi! I’m not a professional brand!”

Fourth, you must have your own website, with your own trademarked logo on it. Filing a trademark is relatively simple, and without it, Amazon isn’t going to pay attention to any claims of infringement.

Shopify – one way to host your own website at low cost

AmazonBasics, Amazon’s most ubiquitous private label brand, is a poster child for the right way to do private label on Amazon. Choose a product, do it better, for a lower cost, with clear branding on the product and detail page, with a package designed specifically for e-commerce. If you have a product like one of these, Amazon will kick the bootleggers off your listing with very little effort.

Clearly branded packaging and product

But, if a seller were to buy 20 AmazonBasics backpacks, then sell them as a seller on the website, Amazon won’t stop them – that is the design of the website. And Amazon won’t stop another seller from selling your product online; but with a properly branded product, they will stop the hijackers from selling generic garbage on your listing.

Even AmazonBasics has to allow other seller offers on the listing


About the Author
I got my first job at Amazon because of my German language skills from my Master’s in History. Take that, people who said I’d never get a good job with my liberal arts degree! I soon learned that I’m not good at taking orders and started my MBA coursework at Seattle University.

I worked at Amazon for 8 years, as a liaison for law enforcement in Fraud/Transaction Risk, a quality and compliance manager in Product Compliance for Amazon Brands and imports globally, and lastly, managing hardware for Website Availability. I love the flexibility that working for clients on Amazon rather than for Amazon affords me.

In my not significant free time, I do fiber crafts such as spinning, crocheting, and embroidery, and I have been in a community band since 2009, playing French Horn, Trombone, or Euphonium depending on the band’s needs that season.

8 thoughts on “What does Amazon consider to be a “branded” product?”

    • Through GS1, yes, they are quite expensive. We’ve had success with Bar Codes Talk. You can only get the Amazon provided IDs (GCIDs) with Brand Registry, which requires a Trademark. Many new sellers likely do not have this, so buying UPCs is cheaper. Hope this helps!

    • Hi Dyanne! That’s what private label is, so I won’t be able to explain the whats and wherefores in a short comment – but basically, you need to find a supplier, make sure the products are legal to sell (compliant with regulations, doesn’t infringe on IP), trademark the logo/name you intend to use, work with the supplier to produce and ship the product, then get approval to sell it on Amazon (some products/categories don’t require approval). If you’d like to learn more, please check out our self study course: https://www.thinkcascadia.com/concept-to-pl-seller-course/

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