Obligation to provide information in online stores

A company’s obligation to provide information must be considered when implementing an online store. These guidelines are designed for the most common situations in which an online retailer needs to assess what information needs to be provided to the consumer at which stage.

While an online retailer can decide how to implement its website and purchasing process, it must ensure that advance information is presented as required by law, that is, in a clear and understandable manner. An online store must also be able to prove that the information has been provided to consumers.

The guidelines adhere to the new requirements of the Consumer Protection Act entering into force on 1 January 2023, which concern, among other things, the provision of contact information.

Information and its presentation on websites 

  • Offer all customers in the online store information on:

    Provide this information on your online store’s website so that it can be easily found before the consumer makes the actual purchase decision.

    The information should be clearly structured. A common way is to gather information in a bottom or top banner found on each web page.

    It is also advisable to provide clearly structured information in the online store’s terms and conditions. The link to the terms and conditions should be placed on the online store’s website so that the consumer can easily find the terms and conditions.

    Information relevant to the consumer’s purchase decision must also be provided as part of the purchase process in the product-specific information and on the order page (shopping cart).

    Consumers appreciate the fact that they can find information easily and effortlessly.

  • On the online store’s product-specific pages, provide information on:

    The online store must place the information close to the product image or in such a way that the consumer can see it without looking for it.

  • Order view and ordering process details

    Provide the following information in the order view:

    Information on payment methods and payment

    An online store must provide information on payment methods and payment at the beginning of the ordering process at the latest. An ordering process begins, for example, when a consumer enters their personal information or other information needed to place an order on the website.

    If your online store offers credit to finance an online purchase, provide the consumer with advance information on the credit and the terms and conditions of the contract in good time and in a permanent form.

    The information must be available to the consumer well before the conclusion of the contract, that is, before the consumer provides personal information other than their email address.

    Before the conclusion of the contract, information on the credit shall be provided to the consumer in a permanent form, that is, in such a way that they receive it in person and has a genuine opportunity to save and reproduce it unchanged.

    For example, the credit application process can

    • instruct the consumer to save and print advance information and contract terms.
    • send the information to the consumer by email. In addition to this, the information must always be easily visible in the credit application process.

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    Delivery restrictions

    Tell the customer about any delivery restrictions at the latest when the ordering process begins.

    Since the information must be provided before the ordering process is initiated, it must be placed on the website so that the consumer can see it before entering the information necessary to place an order.

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    Delivery restrictions

    Information on the purchase

    On the order page, provide the following information:

    • Main features of the product or service
      • For example, the main features of a product can be given by showing a picture of the product to be ordered on the order page and a link to the product page where the features are described in more detail.
    • Price of products or services
      • Give the total price of the products or services including taxes. If the exact price cannot be calculated beforehand, state the basis for determining the price.
      • If the price of the products or services has been determined individually on the basis of automated decision-making, the consumer must be informed of this.
      • The total price must include not only the price of the product but also the delivery costs. If delivery costs are not included in the price of the product, state the possible delivery costs or at least that delivery costs will be added to the price of the product
    • Information on the duration and termination of a long-term contract.

    Information on the product, price and duration and termination of the contract must be provided before the order is placed. In practice, they must be above the order button. The information can be displayed on the order page or in a pop-up window immediately before the order is confirmed. The consumer must be able to find information about the main features of the product easily and effortlessly.

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    Product’s price, main features and duration and termination of the contract

    Link contract terms to the ordering process

    Contract terms should include advance information on:

    For example, link the contract terms in the following ways:

    • The order path has a clear link to the contract terms and a box that the consumer must tick before they can proceed to the next stage of the order.
    • The consumer will not be able to place an order until they have opened the contract terms.

    Accepting a payment obligation

    At the end of the ordering process, it must be ensured that the consumer accepts the obligation to pay associated with the order. If the consumer must press a button or use some other function to place their order, the phrase ‘the order creates a payment obligation’ or words to that effect must be displayed in connection with it.

    For example, a display window may be placed next to the order button, which clearly and unambiguously shows the products being ordered and all costs related to the order.

  • The consumer has the right to receive a confirmation of their order. If necessary, the company must prove that a confirmation was sent to the consumer.

    The confirmation must be delivered to the consumer within a reasonable period of time from the conclusion of the contract, but at the latest at the time when the products are delivered or before the provision of the service begins.

    The confirmation must contain the same information the consumer must be given before the purchase decision is made. The confirmation must be sent in a permanent manner that prevents any possibility of altering the information later, for example by email or on paper.

    If the information has already been given to the consumer in a permanent manner, it is not necessary to provide it again at the confirmation stage. In this case, however, the consumer has the right to obtain confirmation of the conclusion of the contract.

    An order confirmation must include the following information:

    If the delivery of digital content is started electronically before the end of the cancellation period, the confirmation must also include the consumer’s prior consent and acceptance to losing the right of withdrawal.

    If the consumer concludes a credit contract with the order, the contract must be made in writing and given to the consumer in a permanent form.

More detailed information

Information on the company and customer service

Withdrawals and returns

Liability for defects and warranty

Information on delivery

Information on products or services

Payment and credit

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