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The MAP, or Minimum Advertised Price, is the lowest price at which a retailer should sell a specific product. MAP Monitoring scans the internet for fluctuations in price across different e-commerce sites. The easiest way to MAP monitor is through web scraping, the automatic extraction of data from a web page. Keeping careful track of minimum prices has many organizational benefits such as maintaining brand image, enhancing competition in the market, and protecting the margins of suppliers. Tracking the manufacturer advertised price along with scraping useful data from e-commerce sites will create a solid base for your organization to make data-driven decisions in the future.
What is a MAP price?
MAP stands for Minimum Advertised Price which is the lowest price that a retailer can sell a supplier’s product. Enforcing minimum advertised pricing gives suppliers control over the sale of their product therefore helping organizations maintain brand image, enhance competition in the marketplace among retailers, and protect the profit margins of suppliers. For example, if the manufacturer advertised price is $15, then retailers have to sell it for at least that amount or violate MAP.
How to Monitor MAP
In an era of e-commerce, it is especially important to monitor MAP. Because of the plethora of online retailers, it can feel nearly impossible to keep track of all the prices on every site. With the ubiquity of online shopping, organizations must be extra vigilant against retailers trying to sell their goods below the MAP (minimum advertised price).
What is MAP Monitoring?
MAP Monitoring is the act of tracking prices online for your goods across retail channels in order to ensure that MAP is being followed. While this can be done manually, tracking every online price fluctuation is time consuming and expensive.
Web scraping, the automatic extraction of data from a web page, makes the MAP monitoring process much easier and efficient. When given a URL as input, a scraping tool will output the entire web page as data points. This data can then be organized and analyzed to generate organizational insights.
MAP monitor scraping
Scraping Robot’s scraping modules make it easy to scrape e-commerce sites for price fluctuations. Because scraping tools help you notice even the slightest changes, they are perfect for monitoring MAP. Additionally, scraping tools use updated online data, therefore making the price information more accurate than manual data extraction. If you extract price data manually, then it will likely already be outdated by the time you’ve collected all the necessary data for analysis. Check out our price page for more information.
Benefits of MAP Monitoring
There are many reasons organizations monitor MAP, primarily in order to protect their profit margins and brand image. However, MAP ensures that the market stays competitive since retailers can’t undersell items in order to attract consumers.
Maintain brand image
An important reason to do MAP monitor scraping is to protect your brand’s image. While having a low price attracts customers, luxury brands of mid market brands also use price as an indicator of quality. For example, expensive skincare brands justify prices by advertising all natural ingredients or other factors that distinguish them from cheaper brands. Therefore, it is essential that brands whose price is indicative of a specific target should learn MAP price monitoring to prevent their product from being sold at a price below its quality.
If a retailer were to sell a product below its MAP, then they would easily outearn competing retailers that followed the MAP. Therefore, monitoring MAP and ensuring retailers are respecting it is a great way to keep market competition healthy.
For suppliers, scraping the MAP of products similar to your own gives you a sense of the competitive price range for that product. Establishing a price range based on market competitors, you’ll be able to discover the perfect price for your product that makes it competitive without sacrificing a profit.
For suppliers, MAP is in place to help protect their profit margins. While retailers still decide how much they want to mark up a product from the MAP, not going below it ensures an established profit margin for suppliers regardless of which retailer decides to sell their goods. With the amount of different online sellers, it can be daunting to have to track even the smallest of sellers to protect your margin. Therefore, monitoring MAP through scraping is the best way to stay constantly updated and scan the internet for mentions of your product and price.
After MAP Monitor Scraping
In addition to monitoring MAP, scraping e-commerce sites for useful data and conducting price analysis is the perfect companion to MAP pricing.
While scraping e-commerce sites for MAP is extremely beneficial for your organization, it would be foolish to ignore all the other useful data points that can be scraped from e-commerce product pages, trending product pages, and more. Consumer sentiment data, which can be extracted from online consumer reviews, is extremely helpful in analyzing price and consumer satisfaction. While you’ll never price below the MAP, scraping customer reviews can give you a sense if your price is too high above the MAP that it is scaring away customers or leaving them unimpressed. Consumer sentiment data is also useful for product development and analysis as review scraping makes it easier to spot patterns within lots of online reviews.
Analyzing the minimum advertised price is just one aspect of performing price analysis. Price analysis includes understanding competitor prices, the ideal consumer price, fluctuating product demand, and market trends. Therefore, you’ll still consider the MAP but take into account how to lower the price through reducing production costs and how to respond to consumer sentiment with regards to price.
MAP, or minimum advertised price, is the lowest price that a retailer is allowed to sell a specific good for. Establishing this price is meant to prevent retailers from underselling products in order to gain a competitive edge in the market. For sellers, MAP monitoring is a necessary process to protect your product from being undersold and help establish a healthy, competitive market. Web scraping, the automatic extraction of data from a web page, makes it easy to extract price information across e-commerce channels. By using a scraping tool to monitor MAP, your organization will maintain their brand image, enhance competition, and protect their margins. With the help of Scraping Robot’s scraping tools, performing price analysis and scraping consumer sentiment data from reviews provides context for your MAP data.
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