MAP Pricing is a practice I’m seeing with increasing frequency as I visit more and more wholesale suppliers. MAP stands for “Minimum Advertised Pricing” and is a way that suppliers try to protect their pricing structure. It generally means that you cannot display a price lower than the MAP, but you can sell it at a lower price if you want. Usually these MAP prices are higher than street value for the item and often you need to discount them to stay competitive.
For website shopping carts, this usually means you can do something like a shopping cart discount that can be automatically applied.
For eBay, it usually means that you would have to set the item as a ‘Buy It Now’ using the Map Price as a price. Since MAP is usually higher than street value, it generally doesn’t work on eBay unless some added value can be thrown in (such as free shipping or a free bonus item).
I’m not sure who said this, but someone once said, ‘the price of something is what someone is willing to pay for it’. If you’re getting set up with a new supplier and there are MAP pricing policies in place, make sure you understand the rules before you do business with them.