What Constitutes a MAP Policy Violation

Blogs | July 24, 2019

What is the Difference Between Breaking MAP and a MAP Policy Violation?

Let’s start with the basics. What is MAP? Differing from MSRP (Manufacturer’s Suggested Retail Price), MAP (Minimum Advertised Pricing) is the lowest price a retailer can advertise a product for sale. While a product can actually be sold under MAP, the price advertised must go no lower than the price determined by the manufacturer.

That said, the only sellers that are held to this standard are those who have a signed contract with the brand stating that they will abide by the set MAP pricing structure. This policy, applicable to both online and brick and mortar stores, was put into place to protect manufacturers from brand erosion.

When is a Third Party Seller Violating a Minimum Advertised Price (MAP) Policy?

A MAP policy is a document stating the manufacturer’s value of the product and a clearly defined list of penalties that a manufacturer can place on a seller should they breach the contract. It’s important to remember these regulations and penalties are only applicable to sellers who have a signed contract with a brand.

Some MAP tracking/policing services report very high (90+%) success rates for their efforts enforcing MAP. It’s important to note that this success rate often only includes authorized seller MAP adherence by known dealers who have signed MAP agreements. Normalizing third-party marketplaces also requires focusing on unauthorized sellers and authorized sellers who have not agreed to MAP policies.

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