When running a business, your terms and conditions work as a contract between you and your clients for your supply of services and products and regulate your relationship. You can call the document in many other ways, from T&C to terms of sale, and business terms. No matter what name you choose for terms and conditions, they send the same message, you are offering your services and products on a take-it-or-leave-it basis. They are essential for the protection and success of a business because they outline how the company and clients are permitted to act. Furthermore, these rules also establish crucial clauses regarding all aspects from disputes, to return and intellectual property rights.
But, you don’t write terms and conditions daily, so it may prove challenging to figure out what they should include. Also, the final product must be accessible and easily understandable for all your clients.
While your local authorities may not require all businesses to have a terms and conditions act, it’s best to have one in place from the beginning because it’ll make company running smoother.
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Before you write the terms and conditions
Before you start writing the T&C act for your business, understand what its role and purpose are. Otherwise, you’ll fail to create something that resonates with your clients’ needs.
What your reasons are?
Most businesses create terms and conditions because they want to prevent their clients from abusing their service, limit liability, and establishing ownership in their content, trademark, copyrights and other intellectual property.
When running a company, it’s crucial to address the above reasons at least at their minimum, to limit the claims against your services’ quality.
As you write the terms and conditions, keep the above reasons in mind to avoid any unnecessary work. The main goal of the terms is to protect your business and interests.
Set ground rules
All companies have standards for the usage of products and services, and so should you. For example, if you sell silver jewellery, you may ask your clients always to remove their accessories before they take a bath or wash dishes, to maintain their properties and prevent damage. It’s known that some chemical ingredients deteriorate silver, and if your clients want to preserve their jewellery’s beauty, they must care for them according to your instructions. Otherwise, you’re not responsible for the damage they get. Also, if you have a website that provides free stock photo, you may want to prohibit sexually explicit material from being posted and shared on your websites.
Depending on the services and products you sell, you can also establish age limits for who can use it. You can even require payment or subscription fees, and it’s smart to include the information in your business terms.
Make a list with all the rules your clients must respect, and from them, you can start creating a terms and conditions agreement.
Decide where you want to post the terms and conditions agreement
Once you’ll finish writing your terms and conditions share them in a conspicuous location, for your clients to access them easily. If you post them on your website, create a particular category named Terms of Sale, Terms & Conditions, or any other name that you prefer.
Nowadays, with companies promoting and selling their services through their websites, the web page is the most accessible place where to post the information, so the public to easily access it.
Supposing you have a sign-up form, you should always ask your clients to sign the acceptance of the terms and conditions before setting their account.
You can post a link to your business terms in your website footer, FAQ page, on social media, and throughout user forums.
If you also have an app your clients can install on their mobile devices, include the agreement in the software. Both Google Play and Apple App Store provide space for uploading this information.
Your business terms don’t help your business when your clients cannot find them or when the clients don’t have to accept them.
What to include in your business terms?
As stated before, your terms and conditions are a variety of rules and guidelines your clients must follow when they choose your services. But for them to quickly understand what you ask them; you must include some key elements in your agreement.
Contact information – before presenting your requirements and rules share with your clients, necessary information on how they can contact you if they have further questions. Your Terms and Conditions should always include your contact info, the same listed on your customer service pages and social media.
User registration clause – when you use a T&Cs generator to create business terms for your business, including a section that asks your users to agree with your words is essential. Also, state in your clauses that when they choose to register on your website, they are responsible for preventing unauthorised use of their account.
Prohibited activity policy – business terms should always include information prohibiting unlawful use of the products, services, and website. Make a list with the particular types of illegal behaviour you prohibit when someone is using your services, so your clients to know what you refer to. To further minimise your liability, also state in your T&C that you’re not responsible for the content third parties publish.
Pricing disclosure – disclose the prices and fees of all products and services that you sell through your website or physical stores. Use phrasing like as-is for products and as available for services to minimise the chance of a dispute. Provide information about shipping costs, acceptable payment methods, and how your clients should complete transactions.
Warranty clause – people ask for a warranty when they pay for goods and services, and you should list related information on your website. When you manufacture and distribute products, it’s best to place the warranty clauses without your business terms, so people to easily track them. Also, by doing so, you describe what features are warrantied and what type of replacement, refund or repair, your clients should expect when the products fail to meet the warranty.
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