Idea

Amy avatar image
Amy suggested

Remove Best Seller Rank from Merch Shirts or at least hide them from the public

The Best Seller rank tools out there are great for FBA Sellers

For Merch Sellers, and I'm sure the overworked Copyright team, its a nightmare

While many use this tool "just for inspiration", the copycat theft is using this to their advantage

If we can't have a watermark yet, at least hide the ranking

I am at the point where I would much rather just skate by with a handful of sales here and there on my merch shirts instead of having sales explode (which, is insanity for any designer or business owner) because I KNOW as soon as a shirt gets a decent rank, I am going to be wasting time reporting the pixel by pixel design theft as soon as the following morning.

Benefits:

  • Designers will spend more time designing quality shirts which will benefit Amazon with the revenue they make
  • Copyright team cost will be significantly reduced and amazon may allocate those funds in other areas to benefit the platform
  • Copyright team can better focus on shutting down repeat offenders instead of focusing on excessive volumes
  • No other POD showcases rank that I am aware of. I have far fewer instances of copyright theft on other platforms

Cons:

  • None for Amazon or for sellers running their business with integrity
merch by amazoncopyright
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Joan avatar image
Joan commented

Hide Best Seller Rank from data scraping tools/scripts (or whatever they're called)

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L. Frase avatar image
L. Frase commented

I like Joan's suggestion best. Make it so that ranking data can't be scraped with tools and scripts. That's how the worst of the offenders get the info. For the honest researchers, ranking gives you a good idea of whether a niche is selling or not (not to copycat).

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merchnoob avatar image
merchnoob commented

The problem is the scraper tool will then just spoof itself as being a browser - I doubt you will be able to hide it to specific types, easy to find a way around that unfortunately.

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ok then,it was a lame suggestion because I don't know how scraper tools work. I just know something has to be done about p4p copycat infestation. If anyone from Merch is interested, I can show them examples of how BAD it is.

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DMS avatar image
DMS commented

Nice idea in theory. Perhaps we could have the best of both worlds.

When Merch shirts reach a certain sales rank (200k ish), the sales rank is removed? Designs with zero and high sales have the same data showing, but we are still able to check if a niche is viable.

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Amy avatar image
Amy commented

Ok maybe I don't fully understand the scraping tools because I do not use them

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M avatar image
M commented

The "Bestseller Rank" is an integral part of Amazon as a whole, and part of the reason why they've got lots of items for sale, competitive prices on many things (due to competition), and lets sellers know how they are doing in a particular niche so as to know where to concentrate their efforts or marketing etc etc. While I don't disagree that the scraping tools are annoying in that they make it easier for unscrupulous people to simply copy listings, that would be far better dealt with (in my opinion) by getting Amazon to actually properly deal with infringing copycats or design thieves in the first place - for one thing they have an obligation under DMCA regulations to enact a "repeat infringer" ban on any accounts reported multiple times for clear infringements, and if they actually banned them and also then banned those bank accounts from being used with another Merch account it would do a far better job of removing the copycats/thieves than simply removing the best-seller ranks would do since many designs that have been blatantly pixel-for-pixel copied have not been huge sellers they've just been where thieves have stolen tons from a particular account/seller. Ban obviously infringing sellers and it won't matter whether BSR is shown or not - but remove BSR and you'll still have thieves.

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Agree. While I like this on one hand thinking of copycat issue (like OP's suggestion btw), on other hand it will not allow me to see what is working best in the market, whether it's my own t-shirts or the general market. Market research in not the problem, copycats are. And there should be more concentration of effectively dealing with this situation rather than having another roadblock established just because it's easier to throw towel at it. I also take a good estimates based on my own BSR to do market research and figure what niche is better to focus on and work in more. So if this is taken away, I'd be little upset.

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