Terms and Conditions are a set of rules that a user must agree to to use your website, mobile app, software, or other services.
Creating a Terms and Conditions agreement is essential for any business to protect itself from users who may try to misuse or abuse your services.
1. What is a Terms and Conditions Agreement?
A Terms and Conditions agreement is a written set of rules and regulations between the User and the Company that the User must agree to follow to use the Company’s website and services.
This document keeps companies safe by informing users of their policies.
A simple terms and conditions agreement will identify the following basic elements:
- Company: the name and address of the Company providing the services or product
- Website: the Company’s website or application that the User will be accessing
- Service: what service or product is the company providing
- Rules: the rules and regulations for using the service or product
- Acknowledgment: an acceptance and acknowledgment by the User to abide by the rules and regulations when using the service or product
|Browsewrap Agreement ||Clickwrap Agreement
These other names also know this document:
- Terms of Service
- User Agreement
- Statement of Rights and Responsibilities
Where you place your Terms of Service on your website can affect its enforceability.
While Terms and Conditions are not required by law, any website, especially e-commerce or social networking websites or applications, and any website or internet service provider that stores a User’s personal data should consider having one.
Terms and conditions protect the Company and act as an instruction manual for its website. They allow the Company to explain things related to its service or product, including, among other things:
- how purchases, payments, and returns are handled
- ownership and use of content and intellectual property
- how Users must conduct themselves, including any prohibited behavior
- limitations on liability and disclaimers
3. Why You Need Terms and Conditions
Without a Terms of Service Agreement, the Company may be limited in how it can run its website or become liable for violating the User’s rights.
Here is a list of some of the preventable suffering using this document could help avoid:
|Can’t disconnect Users for bad behavior||Harassed by disruptive user|
|Can’t use User’s contributions or personal info||Contributions or personal info used in unexpected ways|
|Can’t regulate fraudulent accounts||Scammed by a fraudulent account|
|Can’t regulate fraudulent accounts||Not sure if Company content can be used|
|Liable for any misinformation on the website||Wrongly relied on information on the website|
|Unable to develop and grow business||Unable to promote personal brand|
4. Common Uses for This Agreement
Here are some examples of websites and apps that use one:
- E-Commerce Company – eBay, Amazon, Target, Gap
- Social Media Website or Application – Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Snapchat
- Search Engine – Google, Yahoo, Bing
- Website or Application Providing a Service or Product – YouTube, Apple, Uber
- Gaming Website or Application – Playstation, Pokemon Go, Candy Crush
5. What Should be Included in Your Terms and Conditions
Make sure to include the correct information when you create a TOS.
A simple Terms of Service template should generally have at least the following:
- Who is the Company providing the service or product
- What is the service or product provided by the Company
- Where is the Company’s website
- When will the agreement terminate
- Why might the User not be granted access to the website
- How does the User agree to accept the Terms of Service
It may also include the following provisions if they apply to your website or application:
- No Representations – the Company makes no representations about the appropriateness or availability of the website in other countries
- Minors – minors are not permitted to use the website or must first receive permission from a parent.
- Purchasers and Payment – how purchases, billing, and payments on the website will be made
- Refund and Return Policy – if and how Users can return products or receive a refund
- Registration – The user promises that all the information provided at registration is accurate and will be updated if necessary
- User Name – The company can change a User name if deemed inappropriate for any reason
- User Content – The user owns or has licenses to any contributions, and the contributions do not infringe on any intellectual property
- Contribution License – User grants the Company a license to use contributions in any way
- User Reviews – guidelines for User reviews
- Mobile Applications – license and terms specific to the mobile app
- Social Media – policies regarding linking social media accounts
- Submissions – any User-submitted questions, ideas, or information about the website can be used by the Company as they like
- Prohibited Activities – The user cannot use the website for certain activities.
- Electronic Signatures – Users can transmit electronic signatures
- Intellectual Property – all content on the website and trademarks, service marks, and logos are owned and licensed by the Company and provided “as is”
- Third-Party Websites – the Company is not responsible for any third-party websites that it may link to
- Site Management – the Company may monitor and remove content from the website
- User Data – the Company may retain certain personal data provided to the website
- Copyright Infringement – how Users may inform the Company of any infringements
- Counter Notification – how Users may inform the Company of content User believes was wrongly taken down from the website
- Disclaimers – any disclaimers by the Company regarding the contents and use of the website
- Limitations on Liability – any limitations on the liabilities of the Company
- Corrections – The company may make corrections to the website
About the Agreement
- Term and Termination – how either party can terminate the agreement
- Modifications – The company can make modifications to the Terms of Service template
- Disputes – governing law and how disputes will be handled
- Notices – where to send notices
- Contact Info – how to contact the Company
- Miscellaneous – legal speak regarding the agreement