What is the MAP violation? How & Why Should You Monitor and Enforce MAP Violations Across Channels?

GrowByData
What is the MAP violation? How & Why Should You Monitor and Enforce MAP Violations Across Channels?
Malina Thokar | May 12, 2022
|READ 8 MIN
MAP Policy Violation

If a retailer advertises a product below the outlined price set by a manufacturer in the Minimum Advertised Price policy, then it is called a MAP Policy Violation or simply put MAP Violation.

A manufacturer or brand builds a pricing policy for retailers to protect their brand image and value in the marketplace. A MAP Policy is an important document created specifically to set an advertising price threshold for products. Unfortunately, the policy does not always stop retailers from advertising or selling the products below the MAP, as they may offer discount coupons or codes to customers. MAP policy also specifies the scope of the policy on the internet (IMAP), electronic (eMap), and physical stores.

Today, we will go through what a MAP policy violation is, why it is necessary to monitor MAP violations, and how you can enforce MAP policy violations across channels.

What is MAP Violation?

If any retailer advertises a product below the outlined price set by a manufacturer in the Minimum Advertised Pricing Policy, then it is called a MAP Policy violation or simply put MAP violation.

A recent study done by the Harvard Business Review on manufacturers who use MAP policies found that unauthorized retailers had violated the policies 50% of the time. Similarly, authorized retailers had a 20% violation rate.

Why should you track MAP policy violations across all online channels?

As numerous sellers are advertising and selling your products online, some may be authorized, some may not. Therefore, it is of utmost importance for you as a manufacturer or brand to track MAP policy violations across all online channels. This protects your brand image among customers and saves the profit margin of your loyal authorized retailers. Monitoring MAP compliance and taking necessary actions for non-compliance eliminates unauthorized retailers and allows you to reap maximum benefit.

We know Amazon, Target, eBay, etc. are some of the biggest online channels where anyone can join as a retailer and sell their product. A recent study done by the Harvard Business Review on manufacturers who use MAP policies found that unauthorized retailers had violated the policies 50% of the time. Similarly, authorized retailers had a 20% violation rate. From this study, we can determine that not tracking MAP violations across all channels can potentially destroy your brand image and undermine your authorized retailers.

Consumer buying behavior involves shopping for products on multiple online channels, comparing prices, and searching for the best deal before purchase. If a consumer sees your product or brand advertised at a very low price, it may not be a great representation of your brand value, or they may think a product is a counterfeit or from the “grey market”. This is an example of degrading or destruction of your brand value.

Retailers in today’s world are equipped with cross-channel intelligence to stay competitive in the market. They constantly analyze the product prices of their competitors and reduce their own prices to win the sales, triggering a price war among the resellers, and degrading your brand image in the process. Cross-channel monitoring is very important to avoid a chain reaction as it creates a very serious situation for your brand.

How to track MAP policy violations?

A manufacturer or brand should monitor the market prices of the product advertised by the retailers, to track if the MAP policy is compliant or not. It is the only way to track and take necessary actions on non-compliant retailers.

Enforcing MAP policy in the eCommerce world is very crucial, as it has a huge audience compared to other mediums. A powerful MAP Monitoring Software can help track retailers’ prices across multiple online channels. These tools can alert you about violations with evidence compiled in a PDF format to immediately claim and take swift action to enforce the MAP policy.

How to enforce MAP policy?

powerful MAP Enforcement insights

The process to enforce MAP pricing is to detect all MAP violators across various marketplaces and advertising platforms, proclaim MAP enforcement policy, and if needed, ban non-compliant retailers from selling certain branded products. The ultimate decision to ban the seller is left to the seller and the marketplace. This means retailers must use the MAP compliance monitoring tool, analyze data, and produce accurate evidence to swiftly report MAP pricing violations across multiple platforms.

Our GrowByData MAP Monitoring Software solves this retail industry problem. Along with our powerful price intelligence for your repricing strategy, our price monitoring software provides the bonus of resolving key challenges to MAP violation monitoring and enforcement.

  • Ensure accurate evidence
  • Monitor across platforms at scale
  • Swift MAP violation alerts

1. Ensure Accurate Evidence

Our solution accurately matches your products at the variant level with other retailers across various platforms. We ensure this accuracy with a double-layer Data QA Process that incorporates both AI and human inspection.

2. Monitor Across Platforms at Scale

Our marketplace intelligence solutions support platforms such as Google Shopping, Google Ads, Amazon, Walmart, eBay, Target, and eCommerce platforms such as Shopify, Magento, BigCommerce, Yahoo, Volusion, 3DCart, and others in different countries. Alongside these options, we can scale monitoring for various frequencies and for different time zones and different geographies. Today, we are monitoring MAP violations for different categories such as apparel, tools, industrial, health & beauty, electronics, and more.

3. Swift Map Violation Alerts

Our solution quickly alerts you with accurate MAP violation reports separately on Amazon and Google. You can track violations in an SKU by different retailers across eCommerce sites and marketplaces. You have a snapshot of the violation that you can send directly to related parties for MAP enforcement.

Conclusions

It is imperative to strictly enforce your MAP policies and build brand loyalty among your retailers and customers while maintaining your brand value. While selecting MAP monitoring software for your company, you should ensure that you opt for software that tracks and monitor all the channels like Amazon, Target, Google Shopping, etc.

Want to get started with our cross-channel monitoring and intelligence to stay competitive in your market and gain an edge against your competition? Contact our experts at info@growbydata.com today to learn more!

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