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Sale of goods terms and conditions

Sale of goods terms and conditions

Why have Ts and Cs for goods?

If you are selling goods to consumers or to businesses it is vital that you protect your business interests with a professionally written set of terms and conditions. These will help you deal with a whole range of matters including payment, delivery, how to deal with any faults or if a customer wishes to make a return. Effective Ts and Cs will clearly set out the range of expectations and obligations of both yourself and your customers, giving a stronger footing to the business relationship and leading to further custom.

What kind of terms should be applied to goods?

As well as providing relevant details and pricing about the goods, if they are going to be delivered to the customer you’ll need to outline the delivery arrangements and policy. Your terms should also cover any returns procedure and who is responsible for the return delivery.

Of particular significance to the supply of goods is the situation of defective or faulty goods, or where the customer simply decides they don’t want them. Many retailers choose to adopt a “no-quibbles” returns policy but this can affect your bottom line, so you need to consider the best approach for your business. However, bear in mind that you have overriding obligations to consumers under the Sale of Goods Act 1979 and the Consumer Rights Act 2015, to provide goods that are:

• of satisfactory quality
• reasonably fit for purpose and
• match any description given

How to apply your terms

Make sure that you specify the nature of goods which you’re supplying and the price. This is particularly important if you’re doing business online where the customer isn’t able to actually see the goods in person, or if the items purchased are bespoke. This comes down to meeting expectations, as it’s easy for customers - particularly consumers - to reject goods which do not fulfil expected specifications.

If you want your terms to apply, you’ll need to bring these to the attention of your customers before a transaction is completed. This can be easier to do online, by providing tick boxes which confirm that a potential purchaser agrees to your conditions of sale. It’s trickier to do this in a shop but you can display any important terms, such as a returns policy, in a prominent place with the use of appropriate signage - or simply ensure that the customer is informed about any specific terms before the purchase takes place.

A variety of Terms and Conditions relevant to your particular business can be downloaded from our Business Documents Folder. Click on any relevant templates in the list, below, for further information.

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