The online retail industry is doing better than ever. According to Fevad, in 2021, transactions increased by 15% (compared to 8.5% the previous year) to exceed 129 billion euros. It is, therefore, more important than ever to be visible on the Web and, for this, to have an e-commerce site that is ergonomic, practical, easy to navigate, well referenced on search engines… and in compliance with the law.! As such, there are several pieces of information to display on your online store. Overview of the mandatory information to provide. You can take the help of wikipedia page creation agency, which will handle your Wikipedia Page to grow your Business.
The legal notices of your e-commerce site
If you have a website, the concept of “legal notices” is (logically) well known to you, since this obligation applies to all sites – from a simple blog to an international e-commerce platform. The purpose of these mentions is to provide Internet users with information relating to the entity that owns the site, by what various legal texts provide: data protection act (1978), law for confidence in the digital economy (2004), General Data Protection Regulation (2018), etc. It is also necessary to ensure that this page is easily accessible to Internet users: most often, a link is placed in the footer of the home page.
For an e-commerce site, the information to be displayed in the legal notices is as follows:
- Data relating to the identity of the company managing the site: its corporate name, its legal form, the address of its registered office, its contact details, and the amount of its share capital.
- Administrative data: registration number in the Trade and Companies Register (RCS) for commercial activities, or registration in the Trades Directory (RM) for craft activities (or both at the same time in the event of mixed activities), and intra-community VAT number (in the case of commercial relations between your e-commerce site and other countries of the European Union).
- Information on the hosting of the site: name or corporate name of the host (OVH, Ho stinger, Planet Oster, etc.), address, telephone number.
- Data specific to regulated activities: the name and contact details of the authority that issued an authorization to operate.
To this, you must add a link to your general conditions of sale (see below). You can also integrate the legal notices into these T&Cs.
Finally, keep in mind that any breach of this obligation to display the legal notices makes you liable to a prison sentence of one year and a fine of 375,000 euros.
The general conditions of sale associated with your commercial activity
This is again a legal obligation: these general conditions of sale (GTC) govern the commercial relations between your customers and your brand. They allow customers to learn about their rights, but also their obligations if they agree to buy something on your e-commerce site. For you, it is a protective measure, the objective of the T&Cs being to reduce the risk of disputes with customers – insofar as these conditions are tacitly accepted (since they are supposed to have been read) when carrying out a purchase.
The mandatory information to display on your e-commerce site with regard to the GTC differs according to the type of customer (B2B or B2C). They are largely covered in the Commercial Code if your customers are professionals, and in the Consumer Code if they are individuals.
General terms and conditions for individuals
If your e-commerce site deals exclusively with B2C sales, posting the general conditions of sale online is an obligation, because consumers must be able to consult them before making their purchase. Here are the references to include:
- The characteristics of the goods and/or services offered for sale, including the price including tax in euros (and its components or the calculation elements).
- Payment information (methods accepted, conditions associated with any delays in payment, etc.).
- Information relating to the delivery of the goods (costs, estimated dates, methods offered, etc.).
- The customer’s right of withdrawal and its operation.
- Warranties (of conformity, hidden defects, etc.).
- The terms of after-sales service and the cases in which a product can be refunded, exchanged, repaired, etc.
- The means available to the customer in the event of a dispute.
General terms and conditions for professionals
The CGV system is distinguished, for professionals, by the fact that their communication is optional: it is therefore not necessary to display them on your e-commerce site. However, you should make them available to your customers if they request them, but only those that apply to their specific category. It is, therefore, preferable to draft these T&Cs beforehand. Here are the notes to include:
- The terms of sale.
- Prices excluding VAT in euros (with scales or calculation methods).
- Rebates, rebates, and commercial discounts.
- The terms of payment (methods of payment accepted, deadlines, late payment penalties, etc.).
- Delivery terms.
- The rights of the customer in the event of a dispute.
Please note: as a professional seller, the burden of proof lies with you. You must be able to prove that you have communicated your T&Cs to your customers who have requested them. Otherwise, you expose yourself to the risk of cancellation of the contract and the payment of a fine of a maximum of 15,000 euros.
The processing of personal data on your online sales site
On your e-commerce site, you are necessarily required to collect the personal data of Internet users. Indeed, you will always need their identity and contact details to send them orders, but also promotional offers and tutti quanta. However, since the entry into force of the GDPR in 2018, the fact of collecting and processing personal data gives you certain obligations.
As part of the collection of personal data, whether direct or indirect, you are required to obtain the informed and explicit consent of Internet users.
- Informed, in the sense that users must have a clear idea of what their data will be used for (for example, for an email address: to receive a newsletter or personalized offers).
- Explicit, because Internet users must give their consent voluntarily, by checking a box (the pre-checked box does not work!) or by pressing a dedicated button.
Finally, it is essential to give them the opportunity to refuse the data collection operation, in particular via cookies.
The duty to inform
You must also indicate on your e-commerce site, and in a transparent manner, all the information relating to the processing of users’ personal data. That’s to say:
- The purpose of the processing.
- The legal basis for data collection and processing (consent, performance of a contract, compliance with a legal obligation, legitimate interest, etc.).
- The entities having access to the data (internal departments of the company, external service providers, etc.), specifying whether these are transferred outside the European Union where the legislation differs.
- The retention period of the data once the commercial or contractual relationship has ended.
- The rights of Internet users with regard to their personal data (free access, deletion, modification, etc.).
The absence of even one of these pieces of information makes you liable to a fine of up to 1,500 euros. To find out more about your obligations with regard to users’ personal data, the CNIL offers a very practical getting started guide.
Mandatory information: a question of reassurance for Internet users
The display of these mentions on your e-commerce site results from a legal obligation and avoids you from suffering sanctions. But it is also an essential element of reassurance for Internet users.
Even if few of them will take the time to read your legal notices or your general conditions of sale (except, perhaps, professionals), the fact remains that the mere presence of this information tends to have a reassuring effect. on users who are about to buy from your e-store. Their display is, in fact, a sign of professionalism, respect for legal rules, transparency… And, ultimately, a way to boost your online sales!