Serial entrepreneur with an industrial psychology education and over 23 years of creating, consulting, and operating businesses. Loves mountain biking, snowboarding, and surfing.
If you are new to the world of pricing policies things can be a little bit confusing. Like all industries, there is a certain amount of jargon that gets thrown around. But in the world of MAP it is even worse, because it is an industry that evolved without any central authority. In the aviation world, everyone pretty much uses the same lingo, but in the MAP world that is definitely not so. People use different terms to mean the same thing, and sometimes they use the same term to mean different things! With that in mind, I hope I can clear up a little of the confusion.
Here is a list of abbreviations I commonly see; MAP, EMRP, DMCA, UMAP, VeRo, EMAP, IMAP, MSRP, MRP, and UPP.
It looks like some word soup doesn’t it?!
Here’s the thing, when it comes to pricing policies they all fall into only one of two categories. Either the policy is dealing with just the advertised price, or it is dealing with the actual selling price. (If you want some clarification on the legal ramifications of this difference please check out the article our friend Gene Zelek wrote last month here.)
So the policies dealing with advertising only are MAP (Minimum Advertised Price), UMAP (Unilateral Minimum Advertised Price), IMAP (Internet Minimum Advertised Price), and EMAP (Electronic Minimum Advertised Price). The first two, MAP and UMAP are exactly the same. All policies, whether they are dealing with advertising price or selling price should be unilateral, so adding the “U” in front does not signify anything different.
By the way, making sure policies are unilateral is important legally because it means the manufacturer is not making an agreement with any seller. They are only stating their policy to the world. Sellers are free to do what they want and the manufacturer is also free to do what it wants, which might be to keep sellers from obtaining product if they violate the policy. This might sound like hair-splitting but legally it makes a big difference.
Anyway, the IMAP and EMAP are also almost the same thing. They just limit the scope of what advertisements are governed by the policy. Generally, this means print advertisements are excluded. Brick and Mortar dealers can also advertise however they like.
So on the other side, are the policies that govern the actual selling price. These policies are getting more popular as the legal structure has become more defined. These policies are; MRP (Minimum Resale Price, or sometimes Minimum Retail Price), EMRP (Electronic Minimum Resale Price), and UPP (Unilateral Pricing Policy). This last one can be confusing because, as stated above, all of these policies should be Unilateral so it is not really saying anything.
So that covers the basics of the pricing policies but here are a few other things you might see if you are investigating pricing policies.
DMCA is the Digital Millennium Copyright Act. This is a 1998 law that protects copyrighted material. In our world, it is used as a secondary enforcement measure on online dealers who are infringing a client’s IP (intellectual property). It allows a brand to go to the host of a website that is violating IP and have it taken down.
VeRo is the Verified Rights Owner Program run by eBay. It is also a secondary enforcement measure. It is a program within eBay to have IP infringements removed.
If you have any questions still please reach out to us. We would love to help you set up your pricing policies and get your headaches under control.
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Sounds like a loaded questions doesn't it? One of the most overlooked or undervalued answers to this question is "Do you have the stomach to stop selling to a good customer". Consider this "Is this really a good customer if they're undermining your efforts to maintain a fair market for the rest of your customers". Consumers will find and buy your products regardless of the source. Brand integrity, customer service and continuing to bring viable products to market isn't easy or inexpensive but it's what you've built your business on. Don't allow your work to be degraded by sellers who are only interested in a quick buck and could care less about how their actions undermine your hard work. ...Read More
In today's dynamic business climate, price changes have taken on much more importance. Freight and raw material costs are rising quickly and price changes need to happen quickly as well. Fortunately, we make these price changes easy for our clients. It's as simple as sending us an email with the new file and we make it happen. No need to log into a portal and format your file to fit etc. Just send us your price file to ensure enforcement is in sync with your internal price notifications. In addition, we can make sure your new price file is distributed to all your resellers, even the ones that you do not have direct contact with. We can notify all the Amazon and eBay sellers in one easy email making your life easier and also heading off future advertised price violation issues. IMPORTANT: Do not forget to update your data services as well. Updating one and not the other is a recipe for a MAP violation nightmare." Send your price files to; email@example.com ...Read More
Besides monitoring and MAP policy enforcement we also develop a healthy relationship with your compliant sellers.