Invacare Announces Internet Minimum Price Policy

Invacare Corp. has introduced an Internet Minimum Advertised Price (MAP) policy for the United States.

In a July 7 news announcement, the manufacturer said the MAP policy applies “to all U.S. customers who sell and market Invacare products over the Internet. Invacare is adopting this policy in order to encourage all of its e-commerce providers to promote and invest in the marketing, pre-sales and post-sales services and support of certain Invacare products in the United States in a manner that will promote and preserve the intended premium status of such products.”

The announcement said the new policy will apply to items that Invacare has designated as MAP products: “For each MAP product, Invacare will specify a MAP price, which will constitute the minimum advertised price for such products.”

The policy says Invacare e-commerce providers, dealers and resellers can set their own retail prices for Invacare products, as long as advertised prices for MAP products are not lower than the MAP prices. That includes prices listed in a variety of media, including flyers, mailers, inserts, television or radio commercials, social media sites and e-newsletters.

“To the extent an e-commerce provider of Invacare MAP Products is advertising the general availability of a ‘coupon’ or a discount for use with an Invacare MAP Product, the value of that coupon or discount shall be subtracted from a listed price to determine the advertised price at which the e-commerce provider is advertising an Invacare MAP Product,” the MAP policy says. “This rule shall not apply to a unique discount an e-commerce provider conveys directly to an individual customer via e-mail, phone, or in-person, which shall not be considered an advertised price under this MAP policy.”

Invacare providers can sell MAP products through auction-type Internet sites such as eBay or Craigslist “as long as the format of the sale is ‘Buy It Now’ or a fixed price at or above the MAP price.”

MAP products currently include Invacare patient lifts, standard manual wheelchairs, beds, shower commodes, custom manual wheelchairs, Top End wheelchairs and handcycles, wheelchair backrests and seat cushions, power wheelchairs, scooters and oxygen equipment. Advertised prices are not included for complex rehab wheelchairs.

The MAP policy, plus a list of MAP products and current prices, can be seen HERE.

About the Author

Laurie Watanabe is the editor of Mobility Management. She can be reached at lwatanabe@1105media.com.

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