Weather you’ve been in business for years or just starting out, you need to protect your brand. In order to do that you need to register with the county where you operate for Registering a trademark. Think about a big brand like Starbucks Trademark, what if they had not trademarked there name. Do you think they would be as successfully as they are if not?
Trademarks are often deemed complicated, and not many people actually understand what they are and why they’re needed. Registering one often seems like too much unnecessary work that you would rather just avoid. What many people don’t realize is that if you don’t register your trademark, you may have some practical and legal issues with your business.
The number one aim of every business owner is to keep their business afloat and legal. This means that you can’t afford not to have a trademark, no matter how difficult the process may seem. Here are some practical and legal reasons you should definitely register your trademark.
1. What’s a trademark class?
Before we get into the legal and practical benefits of registering your trademark, we have to tell you what trademark classes are and why you need them. Without knowing which class you belong to, it will be difficult to register your business under the right category. The result of mis-categorizing your business is that the trademark registration process becomes even more complicated and that you’ll lose the rights you are otherwise entitled to.
Trademark class groups products and services of similar areas of a trade together. This helps people figure out exactly what class they belong to and helps avoid misunderstandings that would otherwise happen more often. Classes are numbered, as this is a much easier way to follow things and stay up to date with the information you’re expected to know about your class.
Of course, you don’t need to know anything by heart, as all of the classes are registered under numbers according to the European Union trademark classification. In other words, all you have to do is take a look at that classification and figure out what class best describes your business. Finally, simply remember your number, and you won’t have any issues when registering your trademark.
2. Why is it necessary?
Registering your trademark into a trademark class doesn’t seem that important to the average user. Still, this can very well be necessary. The biggest reason why registering your trademark under a class is important is because this way, other people are prevented from registering the same or similar trademark within the same class.
Those who are selling the same products or offering the same services as you are now stopped from having the same or similar trademark as you. In other words, your class keeps you safe from those who have similar ideas to you. You’ll stay unique and one of a kind without ever having to worry that will change.
Of course, this doesn’t prevent someone from registering the same or similar trademark under a different class. If you want to stay truly original and avoid any sort of disputes, make sure to thoroughly check all of the classes where your business is relevant. Nothing is preventing you from registering your trademark under multiple classes. Before you start the registration process, take a good look at the classification and figure out which classes are related to your business, then register your trademark under all of them. That’s the only way to prevent others from registering similar trademarks.
3. What Is the classification?
In order to register your trademark, you first have to know which class it belongs to. r trademark could even belong to more than one class. In total, there are 45 classes, 34 of which are reserved for goods and 11 for services. You need to take a thorough look at the classes and decide where you fit in. Some examples of classes include nautical, surveying, cinematographic, weighing, measuring, scientific, computer, data processing equipment, computer software, transforming, and so on. We could also have paper and cardboard, printed material, instructional and teaching materials, photographs, and stationary. These are all examples of the goods classification.You
When it comes to services, you may encounter business management, business administration, office functions, and advertising. Let’s not forget about education, entertainment, and providing training. As well as that, we could have the scientific and technological services and research and design related to the same. Industrial analysis and research services, design, and development of computer hardware and software also fall under this class (Class 42).
Finally, let’s not forget about legal services, protection of property, and other security services, personal and social services that meet the needs of individuals.
4. Choosing the right one
Now that you know how important classification is and what it entails, it’s time to pick one for your business. The first step in figuring out which class your business belongs to is to prepare a specification. In other words, you should describe the goods or services you intend to register under the trademark. This specification needs to be clear and precise. Not only that, but it has to be very thorough. It should cover the products of immediate interest, but also those which are intended to be used in the future.
Take into account these things if you want to categorize your business successfully. First of all, take into account the function and the purpose of the goods or services you’re offering. Simply ask yourself why you’re doing this and what the point of your products and services is. Next, consider the materials from which the goods are made of. More specifically, are there any raw materials involved?
As well as that, you should take into account what activities are involved in the service. The process is very important and should be placed under the protection of a trademark so that no one else can copy you in this way. Finally, ask yourself what the subject matter or activity of the services provided is. All of this is important because, otherwise, you may be subject to potential claims for non-use of the trademark and even involuntarily becoming a trademark troll.
5. Avoiding unwelcome changes
Changing the name of your company can often be difficult and costly. This is especially true if you have already built up a reputation. You may wonder why you would even need to change your name. Well, if you don’t register your trademark, others could do it before you. That way, you’re considered to be plagiarizing them, and not the other way around. So, you could spend all of this time making your business well-known and valuable, only for someone else to register the name and take all of your credit.
Changing your name is this situation may be necessary. In other words, you’ll have to start from scratch. You know more than anyone how hard you worked to get your name the recognition it deserves, so why should you start over? Simply register your trademark on time, and you can avoid this whole mess. Only you will be able to use your name, and you won’t have to worry about anyone stealing your reputation.
6. Building value
When you have a trademark, it means that no one can use your name or products for their own benefit. Moreover, it means that no one has the right to use a similar name or similar products. No one is allowed to make cheap versions of your work. In other words, there’s no way your customers will confuse the real deal and the knock-off version, as knock-offs will not be permitted to exist.
This builds value more than anything else, as your customers can only come by quality items. You will be an original provider of original goods and services, meaning that your customers can always expect the highest quality. They’re much more likely to continue putting their money and faith in you, and your sales will continue to grow. All of this will be possible simply because you’ll be deemed valuable because of the trademark you have.
7. Nationwide priority
One of the most valuable benefits of registering your trademark is that you get nationwide priority. When your trademark is unregistered, you only get to prevent others from using it in your limited geographic area. When you register it, nobody across the entire country can use the trademark. If you don’t think this is a huge benefit, remember that we live in a digital age, where the internet is the number one thing that drives traffic to your company.
If your trademark is not registered, others could be using your name or similar names and driving potentially your traffic to their website. Additionally, the nationwide priority benefit is useful for when you’re expanding your business. You’ll get exclusive rights to the brand name across the entire country and are going to be far more valuable when others simply won’t have permission to copy you.
8. Public record of ownership
There is a public database of trademark ownership’s that the Office keeps. This database contains information about the certificates of registration and the certificates themselves, which makes it a matter of public record that you own the trademark in question.
This record is significant because it provides notice to the public that the registrant owns and has exclusive rights to use the trademark. It doesn’t matter if someone who tried to infringe your trademark knows you own the trademark or not. The public record eliminates that standard defense of good-faith adoption, as the infringer doesn’t really have an excuse to use your trademark when they could have easily checked who had the rights to it. The public record will also discourage others from adopting similar trademarks and registering them.
Registering your trademark benefits you in that whenever anyone conducts a thorough trademark search, they’ll see your trademark is already taken. This means that they won’t be able to use the same name or product or anything else for personal benefit. Not only does this keep your company original and free of copycats, but it also protects you from cybersquatters.
Cybersquatters are people who basically steal your name and use it for themselves to make a profit. Not only does this directly affect the amount of money you have in your pocket, but it also downgrades the quality of the services you offer. After all, your customers won’t know that this person is squatting. Instead, they’ll just think you offer poor services.
If you have a trademark on your business, you have the right to take legal action against the cybersquatter and once again gain full control over your business. No need to worry about anyone taking advantage of you any longer. A trademark allows you to directly decide whether someone can use your work and your name and how they can use it. Without your permission, this is just considered stealing, and you have the right to put a legal stop to it.
10. Basis for international registration
Expanding your business beyond the borders of your home country, you’re going to need to trademark it internationally. At some point, every successful business reaches a point where it could go international easily if it just had an international registration. If you look at it logically, how can you register a trademark internationally if it’s not registered in our own company?
When you register your trademark in your home country, you only have to extend the trademark rights to other countries. This is called the Madrid Protocol and has made international registration less complicated. The process has allowed many to reach their business goals more easily and reach a wider audience.
As you can see, registering your trademark brings a lot of benefits to it. Above all else, you’ll know that your trademark only belongs to you. It’s yours, and no one will be able to utilize in your stead or will be able to make a profit under your name. You’ll have a much easier time reaching success and achieving your business goals, too. All in all, the process may be difficult, but by educating yourself, you can easily understand why trademarks are important and register your business. We’re confident nothing but success is in front of you after the registration is complete.