Selling on the Internet?

Anyone thinking of selling over the internet should read the pdf document: A Guide for businesses on distance selling from the Office of Fair Trading.

A Guide to Internet Shopping for UK Consumers

Marilyn Beardsmore takes a look at a few things to check before you shop on the net.


1. Make sure you have the telephone number and address of the retailer in case you want to return the goods or get in touch with them for any reason.

2. When paying for items you should be taken into a secure part of the site. Check for the lock icon in either the lower left or lower right hand corner of your browser to ensure you have an encrypted connection.

3. Check the shop's privacy policy.

4. Check the delivery charges for your item.

5. Check the delivery time and method of delivery for your item.

6. Check the returns policy. By law you have 7 days from receipt of the goods to change your mind. Some sites offer a longer period than this.

7. Take into account import taxes and VAT if you are buying from abroad.

8. Use a credit card instead of a cheque, debit card or charge card. Under the Consumer Credit Act 1974, if you use a credit card you can claim your money back from the credit card company if you don't get your goods, if they are faulty or wrongly described or if the seller goes out of business. A recent ruling by the Court of Appeal (March 2006) means that this applies to overseas trancactions as well as UK ones. The rules apply on purchases between £100 and £30,000. If something does go wrong you can make a claim against your credit card company as well as or instead of the supplier. See the Office of Fair Trading for more information.

9. If you are spending a lot of money with a shop with which you are unfamiliar, you might want to do a Google search of that company name beforehand to gain more information.

10. Save all the paperwork, including emails, relating to a purchase.


Further Information:

Office of Fair Trading

Consumer Direct (A government website)


Red Elepahnt Logo See Also

Quote Know your Consumer rights!
Scales of Justice
Quotation MarkHow do you stand legally when you buy goods over the net?
End Quote • read full article

Quote Returning Goods Bought on the Internet
Delivery Van Clip Art
Quotation MarkBUYING goods from the internet can be very convenient, but what happens if your purchase arrives and you don't like it or it has been damaged in some way?
End Quote • read full article

Quote Buying goods from abroad – import taxes and VAT
Stamp Clip Art
Quotation MarkA guide to the complexities of buying goods from abroad
End Quote • read full article


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