Why Have A Trademark?

Does your business buy or sell online?

If you’re buying and selling online, a registered trademark can be a critical asset for your business. Yet only 4% of small businesses in Australia have a trademark, and many business owners don’t know it can help them grow and protect their brand.

What is a trademark?

A common misconception is that a trademark is the same thing as a business name, company name or domain name, but it’s not.

A trademark is a sign used to differentiate your business from others in the market who are providing goods or services like yours. The most common types of trademarks are:

  • brand names
  • logos
  • distinctive phrases

Benefits of a trademark

A trademark can help build a memorable experience with customers, leading to brand loyalty and repeat business.

Registering a trademark gives you:

  • exclusive rights to use that trademark as your brand in Australia
  • a legal avenue to prevent others from using your brand to trade similar goods and services

A new way to check and apply for a trademark

Before you apply to register a trademark it’s important to check your idea is new to the Australian market. Some words, phrases or images can’t be registered as a trademark.  That’s because they’re common words that should be available for everyone to use. For example, ‘warm’ for heaters.

To help small businesses, IP Australia is piloting a new trademark checker tool.  You can use the tool to check if a trademark is available to register in Australia, and then easily apply. An initial check only takes a few minutes and is free.  If you decide to apply, it can cost as little as $330.




Peta Stephen