Product Authenticity: Which Industries Consumers Care About Most

November 10, 2022

While counterfeiting and goods diversion happens all year, the risk of buying fake goods increases near the holidays. As the U.S. Customs and Border Protection notes, “the holiday season poses a particular risk, given the increase in shopping.”

As consumers plan their gifts and holiday dinners, they are also wary of certain industries and the potential for buying a counterfeit product. We recently surveyed thousands of consumers in the US and the UK to find out what they really think about product authenticity and the brands they buy from. We discovered that 67% of consumers say they are concerned about product authenticity when buying goods for their home and family. However, there are certain industries that concern them more than others.

Here are three industries consumers worry the most about when it comes to counterfeit goods.

Apparel and luxury goods

Almost 80% of consumers said they care about the authenticity of the product when buying luxury goods as well as apparel and fashion. That number increases among Millennials, where 83% of them are concerned about the realness of the luxury goods they purchase.

Pharmaceuticals and medications

For pharmaceuticals, 83% of consumers said they care about their medications’ authenticity – especially over the counter (OTC) medications. Among the generations surveyed (Boomers, Gen X, Millennials, and Gen Z), 87% of consumers over the age of 55 said that when buying pharmaceuticals, they worry about the authenticity of their medication.

Food, beverage, and tobacco

When it comes to what we consume, people across generations worry about authenticity. Almost 70% of Millennials have concerns about the authenticity of the baby food and formula they buy. Additionally, 78% of consumers care about the authenticity of chocolate and other confections, and over fifty percent have concerns about the authenticity of the alcohol and tobacco they buy.

Bringing it all together

No matter the industry, product authenticity is important to consumers. They want to be sure the products they buy for themselves, and their loved ones, are real. When consumers discover that they’ve bought a bogus product, their perception of that brand changes. Over fifty percent of those surveyed said they wouldn’t buy from a brand again if they bought a fake product. Furthermore, 47% say they wouldn't trust a brand if it had an issue with counterfeit products, whether they personally bought the product or not.

What can businesses do to ensure their consumers stay happy and healthy this holiday season? Invest in product digitization. With Digimarc Validate, a brand protection product featuring covert watermarks, brands gain cutting-edge anti-counterfeiting capabilities that allow brand protection teams, retail partners, customs agents or consumers to check the validity of goods. Additionally, brands also gain unprecedented insight into their products across their lifecycle, from creation to shipment, manufacturing and purchase. Powered by the Digimarc Illuminate platform, Validate also provides brands with robust product data in a centralized product cloud.

Protect your brand integrity and ensure your real products are in the right place.

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