Make sure information is easily available on the name of the shop, its street address and other contact information, for instance e-mail address and telephone number.

You should not do business with websites that do not provide clear information on who the vendor is and how you can contact them.
If you cannot find the vendor’s contact information on the website, this is often a sign that the vendor is not interested in being found. Should you have a problem later, you would therefore be in a difficult situation if, for instance, you only have the vendor’s e-mail address.

Make sure the vendor informs you of your rights in case of defects in the purchased item.

The vendor must clearly state what you should do if you wish to bring a complaint about a product within the limitation- or guarantee period. If the vendor is not aware of your rights as a consumer, you should consider shopping at another website.

Make sure to get clear information on price, delivery, payment and other terms of purchase.

The sales agreement should be plain and clear, and it is the vendor’s responsibility to provide you with information on:

  • Product price, including all taxes and duties, e.g. VAT
  • Terms of delivery and payment plus delivery and payment costs
  • Right of cancellation, right of return, right of exchange and guarantee, if any
  • Right of complaint – you have at least 2 years’ right of complaint after purchasing a product

If the vendor does not provide this information, you should find another website that meets these requirements.

You are best protected if you can pay with a debit or credit card.

The safest way to pay for purchases over the Internet is by card (for instance Visa debit card, MasterCard, Eurocard and American Express). You do not have the same opportunities to get your money back if you pay in advance, e.g. by bank transfer.

If you pay by card, you can always get your money back if

  • The product has not been delivered
  • The vendor demands a higher price than originally stated
  • You cancel the purchase by refusing to receive the product
  • Money has been withdrawn from your account without your consent

In such cases, you should contact the vendor and ask to have the money returned to your account. If the vendor refuses, you should contact the card issuer – usually your bank – and inform them that you want the disputed amount returned to your account.

Check your cancellation rights.

When you shop online, you normally have the right to cancel a purchase. The length of the cancellation period depends on the country where your purchase is made. But you always have as a minimum 7 working days to cancel a purchase. If the vendor does not provide information on your right of cancellation, you should shop at another website.

Please note that seals on software, music, DVDs and videos must usually be unbroken if you intend to make use of your right of cancellation.

There are a number of exceptions to the right of cancellation, for instance hotel reservations/stays, package holiday orders, car rentals and airline ticket orders.

Make sure that you have received all the information you need about the product/service you are considering purchasing.

If the vendor does not provide you with enough information about the product, you may not receive the product you are expecting. Contact the vendor to get the information you need or consider shopping at another website.

Read the vendor’s policy for handling and protecting your personal data and payment information.

The vendor must clearly tell you what kind of personal data is gathered about you, for instance name, address, gender, age. The vendor must also tell you how this information is to be used and what it is to be used for.

Your payment information must always be protected from the risk of another person gaining unauthorised access to it, both during the transmission and during the subsequent data storage. Make sure there is a padlock at the bottom of the page where you enter your customer and payment information and that the website’s URL begins with https:// .