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Catch counterfeiters red handed on Black Friday with anti counterfeit protection

November 16, 2022

Discover how fighting fakes through anti-counterfeit protection technology has become key to safeguarding your online revenue and brand reputation on Black Friday and beyond.

Do you want to know if your brand is at risk online?
Talk to an expert

Black Friday provides a great opportunity for companies to attract consumers, particularly within the US and European markets where beauty and fashion products (amongst others) will be in high demand. 

Since 2019, online sales have grown by 31%, giving companies greater emphasis on ensuring their products are listed and available in the correct channels and markets. But beware, with these changing trends, dangers are lurking within today's vast digital ecosystem, making brand monitoring and anti-counterfeit protection a necessity in the fight against the rise of fake branded products and the various forms of brand abuse online.

But it's not only retailers who must be alert this Black Friday, consumers must also be vigilant to online scams. Highly anticipated bargains may not transpire to be as good as they had initially appeared. Counterfeiters are preparing for a BIG payday, leeching on the success and reputations of authentic brands and products, which is precisely why protection against fakes must be in place for this day and beyond.

Stay alert to online threats

The huge number of counterfeits listed throughout the digital ecosystem increase further during peak shopping periods, and Black Friday is no exception. It acts as a timely reminder of the importance of protecting brands against fakes online. 

Almost 60% of Black Friday 2021 purchases were impulse buys which heightens the risk to shoppers who can be easily tempted to make a purchase with brands and products which they know little about, entirely based on price. It's these irrational purchases which play directly into the hands of counterfeiters, and unauthorized or non-compliant resellers. Failure to detect and act against such infringements or breaches of contract leaves product sales and brand reputations at risk.

It used to be that fake branded goods were limited to cheap watches and handbags, but today, counterfeiters have expanded into new industries where products are easily copied and demand is high like fashion accessories, personal care products, and pharmaceuticals. 

Fake beauty, personal care, or pharmaceutical products pose a far greater danger to the end consumer. Shoppers may purchase makeup, skincare products, or a fragrance which contains untested, harmful, or even toxic ingredients which are unlikely to have followed the strict regulations which authentic products undertake. This leaves the health of consumers at risk, and companies must act to prevent the sale of such products marked with their brand name. Failure to prevent this association can lead to negative reviews and ratings, complaints which in turn cause lasting, or irreparable damage not only to the end consumer, but to the brands reputation. 

Black Friday in the beauty and fashion industries

Did you know that consumers are searching for bargains earlier each year? In fact, Statista reported that by October last year 27% of the potential buyers in the USA, followed by 25% in Canada, 23% in the UK and 22% in Germany had started looking for Black Friday deals. This anticipation of searching for the best discounts has prompted brands to launch their Black Friday campaigns earlier. 

Despite a growing trend for male fashion, grooming, and the use of personal care products, the main consumers of beauty and fashion products are women. Perhaps unsurprisingly, women are also more likely to make a purchase during Black Friday with 29% of female consumers making at least one purchase last year. People aged between 25 to 44 make up 58% of the potential customers, which is aligned to the industry's main core target market audience.

Clearplay revealed that last year’s Black Friday shopping was dedicated to beauty and fashion, with “year-on-year orders rising 61% and 35% respectively”, indicating shoppers were open to invest in these product types. 

Customers were attracted to “street style” related items such as trainers (which were the top item), followed by apparel and bags. In beauty, brush sets, foundations, hair and skincare products proved to be the most popular. These are great examples of the goods which Brands need to protect against fakes using the correct anti counterfeit protection in order to detect them and withdraw harmful sales online.

This year Calashock expects to see  Marketplaces, (which already account for 62% of total e-commerce sales), to take an even greater percentage of the overall sales. Those who adopt an omni-channel approach will have an advantage, driving traffic from various channels to their products using attention grabbing prices, but beware, fake branded products are likely to surface and get mixed with authentic items.

What to expect from Black Friday 2022:

  • Black Friday 2022 will begin early this year and sales will be extended over a longer period.
  • Whilst we expect to see a rise in offline sales year-on-year (post pandemic) online sales will be huge once again and remain well above pre-pandemic levels. Many retailers have invested heavily in their online business and consumers of all ages are more accustomed to shopping online.
  • Due to the cost of living crisis and high inflation we can expect to see greater discounts as retailers look to clear excess inventory. Also last year deals were less as due to supply chain issues and less excess stock.
  • Sales and revenue will be lower this year as consumers tighten their purse strings and avoid making unnecessary purchases as a cost of living crisis looms large.
  • Consumer confidence and trust in your brand will play a vital role as ecommerce becomes an increasingly important sales channel. For this reason brands must focus on the safety of online shoppers and invest in anti counterfeit protection to safeguard not only your sales and brand reputation but also online shoppers, this Black Friday and beyond!

Here's how you can protect you brand and products against fakes this Black Friday:

The global sales of fake goods are estimated to be worth approximately 450 billion US dollars a year. For this reason brand and product monitoring and protection must be considered a key aspect in a company's online business strategy. Gaining and maintaining full visibility of the digital ecosystem through scalable AI technology must be a key part of a businesses online strategy. Managing this in-house is an almost impossible task.

Our brand and product protection software crawls the internet in search of suspicious activity throughout digital channels and markets. This enables us to act quickly and efficiently on the behalf of our clients to stop IP infringements and unauthorized activities before they reach the end consumer.

The Smart Protection software includes various solutions including: 

Anti counterfeit protection: our AI and machine learning technology can be adapted to suit your individual business needs. Together we can successfully identify and eliminate sales of fake branded products throughout the channels and markets in which you operate, and those you don´t, safeguarding your sales revenue and brand reputation online. 

Online sales control: identify unknown sellers, monitor authorized distributors, and gain valuable insights into who is selling your products, where, and under what conditions all in one platform. We provide you with all the information through our intuitive, user-friendly platform designed to suit your individual business needs.

Seller tracking: allows you to monitor third parties who are trading your products online. This part of our software will keep an eye on how much your products are sold for, the discounts being applied, and any stocking issues. We understand how a lack of seller visibility can impact your business and provide a suitable solution.


We’ve outlined some of the biggest challenges facing your company and how to tackle them. Now it’s time to take action. The key takeaway here is that counterfeits are threatening your revenue and reputation online, but you can take action. By implementing product and brand protection solutions to your online sales strategy you can identify suspicious product listings, and unauthorized or non-compliant sellers and take appropriate action before they reach consumers. 

Author: Laila Serroukh - Smart Protection

Do you want to know if your brand is at risk online?
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