Types of trade marks

Two IP Australia staff members chatting in the corridor 

Sometimes called a brand, your trade mark is your identity - the way you show your customers who you are. It might be:

  • your corporate logo
  • your name
  • painted on the side of your truck
  • on your signage
  • packaging
  • letterhead

While many trade marks are words, logos or slogans, a trade mark can be a:

  • word
  • phrase
  • letter
  • number
  • sound
  • scent
  • shape
  • logo
  • picture
  • aspect of packaging
  • or combination of the above

This section provides information about the different types of trade marks you can apply for. However, these are not as common as a standard application.

  • Certification trade marks - show that a trader's goods or services are certified as meeting particular standards.
  • Series of trade marks - is made of two or more similar trade marks on the same application or registration.
  • Sound trade marks - protect a sound in relation to good or services.
  • Movement trade marks - protect a motion in relation to good or services.
  • Shape trade marks - protect an overall shape in relation to good or services.
  • Colour trade marks - protect a colour in relation to good or services.
  • Scent trade marks - protect a scent in relation to good or services.
  • Trade marks for wine - before choosing a trade mark or designing a label under which wine will be imported, exported or sold on the Australian market, you need to be aware of certain requirements and regulations.
  • Trade marks for plants - if you are registering a trade mark application relating to plants, there are some issues you need to be aware of.

Last Updated: 27/3/2014

Meet Pampa
Doctor of Philosophy in Biochemistry

Patent Examiner since 2010
Learn more about working with us

Latest news

Stay up to date with the latest intellectual property news in Australia

Read more

Trade mark case studies

We have a range of trade mark case studies, including how to protect and enforce your trade mark

Read more

Search trade marks

Learn how to search our trade marks online database

Read more


eServices is a secure, reliable and convenient way to access a range of IP Australia's transactions and services. With eServices, you can apply for an IP right or make a payment to renew your IP right.

Read more