Terms and conditions are a common occurrence to every website, and their importance to the operation of a company can sometimes be overlooked.
Failure to display or create terms and conditions places a company at risk of potential legal claims from partners or clients following misunderstandings (Nielsen, 2015). When creating terms and conditions for an online business the following factors should be considered; the due date for payment (including payment options), who owns the product or service before a payment is made in addition to a section for the consumer to respond or agree to the terms of service (Small Business, 2003), this ensures a contract is created between client and consumer and works to protect both consumer and business owner rights.
Despite their ability to protect consumers, terms and conditions have been criticised to be confusing to consumers due to their list like jargon which fails to connect with readers (Kenny, 2016) as, few outside of the legal field would be able to understand their meaning and significance. As a result, consumers, may be missing important information which can influence their purchasing decisions (Department for Business Innovation and Skills, 2016).
Overall, despite their failure to connect with readers, terms and conditions are a vital tool of protection for Modus Novels in ensuring their business is consistently successful and legally binding. Modus Novels, ensured once their website was launched with products available for purchase their terms and conditions were available for reading at the bottom of their page, in addition to creating an interactive tool for customers to confirm they have read the terms and conditions before finalising the purchase of a product, which ensures both Modus Novels and the customer are protected.
Department for Business Innovation and Skills, (2016). Terms & conditions and consumer protection fining powers: call for evidence. [online] Department for Business Innovation and Skills, p.4. Available at: https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/504063/bis-16-67-terms-and-conditions-call-for-evidence.pdf [Accessed 21 Dec. 2016].
Kenny, S. (2016). Media: Terms and conditions, we’re coming to get you. Campaign (London. 1968). [online] Available at: http://web.a.ebscohost.com.proxy.worc.ac.uk/ehost/detail/detail?vid=1&sid=3ca69118-e2c7-4156-972d-18943b843b47%40sessionmgr4008&hid=4201&bdata=JkF1dGhUeXBlPWlwLHNoaWIsY3BpZCZjdXN0aWQ9czYyNjQ0NDQmc2l0ZT1laG9zdC1saXZlJnNjb3BlPXNpdGU%3d#AN=112409466&db=bth [Accessed 21 Dec. 2016].
Nielsen, T. (2015). Setting out good terms and conditions for your small business. The Guardian. [online] Available at: https://www.theguardian.com/small-business-network/2013/feb/06/terms-and-conditions-small-business [Accessed 21 Dec. 2016].
Small Business. (2003). How to develop your terms and conditions. [online] Available at: http://smallbusiness.co.uk/how-to-develop-your-terms-and-conditions-19607/ [Accessed 21 Dec. 2016].