MAP is a common term used by wholesale suppliers. You might see it on their dealer price list, or it’s outlined in their dealer terms. We get questions like What is MAP? Why does this supplier require it?
Wholesalers have their own industry terms. As a retailer, it’s good for you to be able to talk with them in their own language. This avoids a lot of misunderstandings. Also, you won’t have to stop them to ask to explain what they mean. They will treat you more seriously if sense that you understand the business.
What is MAP?
MAP means Manufacturer’s Advertised Price. That is the required advertising price of a product. Meaning you can’t advertise that you sell it for LESS than the retail price the manufacturer has set for it.
Let’s do an example. Looking at a dealer price list, you may see that the cost of a honeysuckle scented soy jar candle is $3.50 wholesale. That is YOUR price that you will pay per candle. In another column, it says MAP is $9.99. So when you post that product for sale on your website, on eBay, Amazon or another third party website, you cannot advertise that you sell it for LESS than $9.99.
Why do some suppliers require it?
There are manufacturers that require you to use the MAP and will shut you down if you don’t. This is to regulate the price of the product online.
One of the biggest problems with online retail is that anyone can start an online business, but that doesn’t mean that everyone should. There are poor sellers out there that think that they have to undercut everyone’s prices to make sales, and that is not the truth.
In an effort to protect their products and brands from bad retailers, and to keep the competition equal they will enforce the MAP policy. It’s in the best interest of the brand, and their dealers.
Is there a way around MAP?
Ok ok.. someone always has to ask. Read again to what what MAP is.. Minimum ADVERTISED price. So the way around the same price everyone else is selling it for, is to not advertise it that it’s lower. Meaning you can’t post the lower price on your site or on third party sites, but if you own your own website, you can HIDE the price and show it in the shopping cart at a discount.
So you aren’t going against any policy but what’s the point right? If customers can’t see they can get it lower at your site than somewhere else, they are going to move on. So just follow policy and quit trying to do a “hack” for everything. Some things just have to be followed for the benefit of everyone involved.