Electronic Retailer - June 2012 - 42

• Presentation: Are the terms easy to understand? • Placement: Are the terms presented where customers will look – on the main page, on the checkout page and either adjacent to or above the submit/checkout buttons. (The terms cannot be below the submit/checkout button.) • Proximity: Are the terms close to the advertising claims they qualify? The terms attached to the “Free” or “Reduced cost” claim should be adjacent to the claim. In all terms and conditions sections and summaries located on the website, make sure to include the length of the trial period and when it begins; cost of the trial product, including S&H, and what portion, if any, is refundable; terms of the continuity offer including the negative option disclosures; and information on how and when to cancel to avoid future charges. Require affirmative consent from your customers. Whether by checking boxes or typing text into a field, saying

“yes” over the phone or clicking specific buttons, you cannot charge your customers without an explicit opt-in action. When selling over the phone, you are required to make sure customers are informed about the terms to the same detail as a website or mail order. Have the customer accept the terms and conditions twice – once on the landing page, and once when checking out and submitting the credit card information. Include a statement on the confirmation page indicating that they agreed to these Terms & Conditions and authorized the charges on their credit card.

Billing, Fulfillment and Customer Services
Give the customer a reasonable amount of time to try the product. A 10-day minimum on trial offers is standard. Include the expected shipping time in your trial time period. If it takes 3-5 days to ship, a 14-day trial minimum is best. Do not charge the customer for the core product price twice in a 30-day span. If the shipping and handling is not

refundable, indicate that in your terms and conditions. “Full money back” or “Satisfaction guaranteed” claims are prohibited unless the offer provides a full refund on all merchandise. The price of the recurring shipment should be within reasonable “fair market value.” Ship the product in a timely fashion, and include a customer support contact number or email on the invoice/confirmation email. Notify customers before each and every time they are charged (via email for example), and give them adequate time to cancel before the charge happens. Including the offer terms in the confirmation emails or along with product shipments is a common practice. These emails and sales slips can also mention the date and amount of the next recurring charge that is scheduled. There should be multiple outlets for cancellation – phone, email, chat or mail-in – and customer support should be easily accessible.

Cross-Sells, Upsells and Data Passing
If the consumer has expressed his informed and authorized consent to new charges, cross-sells and upsells to thirdparty vendors are allowed. These offers can be presented to the customer, but the customer must give his new authorization, and go through the checkout process as if it were a new product. Because customers make the connection between the original product and the upsell/cross-sell, the merchant should verify that the upsells and cross-sell sites are compliant as well. Data passing to a third party, including passing on credit card information or customer contact information used to bill a customer for a new charge is prohibited. Implementing business practices that not only adhere to the law but also adequately protect the customer will help keep the company in high regard. Refrain from being lured by the fleeting gains of a non-compliant trial offer campaign and stay in compliance for long-term growth. Alan Kleinman is principal of Meritus Payment Solutions, the trusted global payment partner. Contact him at (888) 341-9702 or akleinman@merituspayment.com.

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Electronic Retailer - June 2012

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Electronic Retailer - June 2012

Calendar of Events
Your Association,Your Bottom Line
Industry Reports
FTC Forum
eMarketer Research
IMS Retail Rankings
Jordan Whitney's Top Categories
Ask the Expert
From the Executive's Desk
Thinking Outside the Box
DRTV's New Best Practices
It's Time to Think Differently About Payment Processing
Guest Viewpoint
Guest Viewpoint
DRTV
U.S. Hispanic
Member Spotlight
Advertiser Spotlight
Advertiser Index
Bulletin Board
Classifieds
Rick Petry
Electronic Retailer - June 2012 - cover1
Electronic Retailer - June 2012 - cover2
Electronic Retailer - June 2012 - 3
Electronic Retailer - June 2012 - 4
Electronic Retailer - June 2012 - 5
Electronic Retailer - June 2012 - 6
Electronic Retailer - June 2012 - Calendar of Events
Electronic Retailer - June 2012 - Your Association,Your Bottom Line
Electronic Retailer - June 2012 - 9
Electronic Retailer - June 2012 - Industry Reports
Electronic Retailer - June 2012 - 11
Electronic Retailer - June 2012 - 12
Electronic Retailer - June 2012 - FTC Forum
Electronic Retailer - June 2012 - eMarketer Research
Electronic Retailer - June 2012 - 15
Electronic Retailer - June 2012 - IMS Retail Rankings
Electronic Retailer - June 2012 - 17
Electronic Retailer - June 2012 - Jordan Whitney's Top Categories
Electronic Retailer - June 2012 - 19
Electronic Retailer - June 2012 - Ask the Expert
Electronic Retailer - June 2012 - 21
Electronic Retailer - June 2012 - 22
Electronic Retailer - June 2012 - From the Executive's Desk
Electronic Retailer - June 2012 - Thinking Outside the Box
Electronic Retailer - June 2012 - 25
Electronic Retailer - June 2012 - 26
Electronic Retailer - June 2012 - 27
Electronic Retailer - June 2012 - 28
Electronic Retailer - June 2012 - 29
Electronic Retailer - June 2012 - DRTV's New Best Practices
Electronic Retailer - June 2012 - 31
Electronic Retailer - June 2012 - 32
Electronic Retailer - June 2012 - 33
Electronic Retailer - June 2012 - It's Time to Think Differently About Payment Processing
Electronic Retailer - June 2012 - 35
Electronic Retailer - June 2012 - 36
Electronic Retailer - June 2012 - 37
Electronic Retailer - June 2012 - 38
Electronic Retailer - June 2012 - Guest Viewpoint
Electronic Retailer - June 2012 - 40
Electronic Retailer - June 2012 - Guest Viewpoint
Electronic Retailer - June 2012 - 42
Electronic Retailer - June 2012 - 43
Electronic Retailer - June 2012 - 44
Electronic Retailer - June 2012 - DRTV
Electronic Retailer - June 2012 - U.S. Hispanic
Electronic Retailer - June 2012 - 47
Electronic Retailer - June 2012 - Member Spotlight
Electronic Retailer - June 2012 - 49
Electronic Retailer - June 2012 - Advertiser Spotlight
Electronic Retailer - June 2012 - Bulletin Board
Electronic Retailer - June 2012 - Classifieds
Electronic Retailer - June 2012 - 53
Electronic Retailer - June 2012 - Rick Petry
Electronic Retailer - June 2012 - cover3
Electronic Retailer - June 2012 - cover4
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