How Map Policies Can Benefit Businesses

by Lina Martinez

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More and more people are getting conscious of their spending. For one, a lot of buyers tend to compare prices first before they make their purchase. This helps them be wiser with their spending and save money on other things.

On the one hand, sellers also monitor other retailers’ pricing to determine whether they are still competitive in the market. A way to compare pricing is by visiting physical stores. However, it can be tedious and time-consuming to do.

On the other hand, there are companies that offer online price tracking that can be easily accessed by consumers and sellers. But brands should also ensure that their MAP policy is implemented correctly and their products and services not sold below their set pricing.

What is MAP?

Minimum advertised pricing (MAP) refers to the lowest pricing a brand or retailer can promote to consumers. However, this does not mean that the brand can sell their products based on the advertised MAP.

Rather, it only indicates the minimum pricing brands can advertise whether online or through other forms of advertisements. In the US, the MAP is 100 percent legal. To clarify, the MAP only refers to “advertised” product pricing and does not dictate a product’s selling price.

In fact, it also serves as consumers’ protection for brands and manufacturers. If a brand sells its products below the MAP, it can affect the product’s overall value.

Likewise, consumers may perceive the product’s quality as subpar and also affect the brand’s image as well. Nonetheless, it is still within the brand’s discretion to sell their brands at any price points they want.

How can MAP affect businesses?

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To clarify, both brick-and-mortar and online retailers have to follow the MAP policy. However, brands have the responsibility to monitor the MAP advertised by their resellers. Basically, brands have the right to pull out their products being sold by retailers if the latter sells the products below the MAP.

That said, it is important that both brick-and-mortar and online retailers follow and honor the brand’s MAP.  For one, it shows that you are a well-trusted business partner and deserves the help you may need from the manufacturer in the future.

By honoring the MAP, everyone can be in a win-win situation — the brand, the retailer or seller, and the consumer. For one, manufacturers who constantly monitor their MAP can help in preserving the integrity of their brand.

It also gives them the right to remove resellers that do not follow the brand’s MAP, hence protecting their brand image. It also helps manufacturers offer consistent pricing for all sellers and prevent commoditization.

Retailers, on the other hand, can be more confident in stocking more products due to competitive pricing and service. Resellers who honor the MAP get more integrity and sales, unlike unauthorized sellers.

Consumers would likely buy to sellers who offer MAP-protected products. In return, consumers will be ensured they will only get the best products from authorized sellers. At the same time, it will lead to trust and loyalty for both sellers and the brand.

These are the important reasons why companies should establish their own MAP regulation. This will protect the brand, the sellers, and the consumers, and promote fair trade and trust towards one another.