A MAP (minimum advertised price) policy, is a contract between you and your re-sellers, which forces the re-sellers not to sell your product for less than the agreed MAP. When you are a big brand, it can be next to impossible to monitor all your collaborators manually, which is where MAP monitoring software comes in handy. This is a program that automatically checks the websites of your re-sellers and notifies you is someone is violating the MAP policy. If you are having doubts on whether or not you should use such a tool, keep on reading to understand exactly how a monitoring software protects your brand.
A brand’s value is determined by how the customers perceive the brand and there are many factors that contribute to this perception, but pricing is by far one of the most important factors. The price should be proportional to the quality of the product (quality being a relative term, which aside from materials and manufacturing processes, can also be determined by design, trends, status symbols and much more). This means that a customer may be willing to pay a lot of money for a certain product, provided that they feel that they are getting their money’s worth. However, consider the following example:
You own a big brand in the fashion industry. You sell expensive clothes, and you are very successful. A person buys a jacket from you and pays $1000. After a few weeks, that same customer, will see that same jacket on different websites. On one website it will be sold for $800, on another for $900 and on another with for little as $600. First of all, that customer will feel that they made a very bad deal, and they won’t be as satisfied with the jacket as they used to be. Secondly, they will start doubting the value of the product, and consequently, they will start doubting your brand as a whole.
As such, not only should you carefully consider your pricing policy, but you should also consider how you enforce that policy, and MAP monitoring is the best way to do this.
Aside from protecting the value of your brand, there are many other benefits that come with enforcing a MAP policy. For example, when your re-sellers stick to the minimum advertised price, they will make a higher profit for your products, which will motivate them to advertise your products more. In addition to that, by making a higher product, they can afford to invest more in improving their services. You might wonder how that can affect your brand. Well, how your products are being sold matters greatly in maintaining your brand value. A corner shop or a poorly designed website is bad for your brand’s image, whereas a nice shop in a good area, with great customer service is sure to increase your brand’s value. Last but not least, by using MAP monitoring, you are encouraging a fair competition with your re-sellers, thus protecting your partnerships.