The rapid growth of e-commerce has led to the evolution of a variety of online businesses. With discounts forming an integral part of every business, almost all products have discount coupons, especially during festive seasons. That has opened the door for businesses that accumulate coupons and promote them to consumers, sometimes in return for a small cut from online retailers for coupons used. Some examples of such websites are CouponMinister and so on.
Most of the coupon websites pick coupons from the website of the original business, with or without permission, express or implied. Such a practice can give rise to trade mark and copyright violation, if appropriate due diligence is not performed. It is important to look for the following before picking a coupon:
- Express permission to use or promote a coupon;
- Compliance with coupon affiliation program;
- Adherence to trade mark usage policy;
- Compliance with terms and conditions of coupon usage;
- Avoidance of misleading or deceitful business practices; and
- Copyright compliance, among others.
It must be borne in mind that there is more than just promoting a coupon that is important for businesses and mistakes can result in costly legal battles.
Image – CouponMinister logo