Mapping out MAP
Minimum advertising pricing is the full name for what MAP stands for in terms of online businesses. It defines that retailers and distributors cannot advertise goods for less than a manufacturer.
Amazon, specifically, the MAP policy prohibits vertical agreements and requires a level of transparency for online consumers, while regulating the online sellers.
The pros and cons of having a minimum advertising pricing policy are there to research and consider, but understanding it is the first step. Most people do not purposefully break policy. No one wants to lose Amazon as a platform to sell their goods and services.
Brick and mortar stores do not have the same regulations in terms of MAP. But, the protections of using an online platform is also not available for an in-house shop.
Intellectual Property complaints are an Amazon norm. However, Amazon does not always enforce the minimum advertising pricing, MAP. It does show that baseless accusations of ownership happen whether a brick and mortar or an Amazon seller.
Amazon’s role is to stay on top of complaints. Failure of a retailer or distributor to respond to grievances from customers may cause a suspension of account or accounts.
The distributor or retailer should always reach out to the complaining party in a show of trust with Amazon and resolve any issues without involving the platform’s staff. Any appealed suspension has a better outcome if the retailer has proof of attempting to clear up a complaint.
If Amazon steps in to clear up any matters between distributors and customers, the final resolution has a possibility of both positive and negative outcomes.
The Law of Online Land
Corporate lawyers are responsible for the MAP policies. Online retailers sometimes sneak in extra clicks to try to avoid the minimum advertising pricing.
To counteract the extra customer clicks, advise to manufacturers are to impose price restrictions transparently.
Amazon retailers are the breath of the online economy and the fabric of American consumption. The goal is better service at the lowest prices. The sellers who abide by the brand’s mantra are the most successful.
Manufacturers cannot always chase down those who do not abide by MAP pricing. However, MAP monitoring services is a successful plan of action. The harm in undercutting starts with the creator and ends with the consumer. The in-between is trackable.