In a court case, Dutch marketplace Bol.com was told that its order button does not meet European standards. The marketplace needs to make it clear that customers are entering an obligation of payment. This could have consequences for other online stores.

Dutch online marketplace Bol.com is one of the leading marketplaces in the Benelux. It recently incorporated its 50.000th sales partners. However, it was also involved in a court case.

Purchase agreement declared null and void

A customer had placed an order for a total amount of 200 euros, but never received the items. The customer did not pay, but Bol.com wanted to receive the payment and brought the case to court. Now, the judge has declared the purchase agreement null and void.

‘A clear statement of a payment obligation should be on the order button’

According to the judge, the marketplace’s order button does not show customers that they are entering an obligation of payment. This is not the first case about online payment obligations. In April, a customer refused to pay Booking.com for a reservation. According to the court in Luxembourg, a clearly legible and unambiguous statement of a payment obligation should be visible on the order button.

Bol.com changes order button

The marketplace was surprised by the conclusion in court, but has changed its order button to ‘order and pay’ in stead of ‘complete order’. “We think that it is clear that a consumer enters into a payment obligation when clicking on ‘complete order’, considering that this happens without problems with almost all of our 13 million customers”, said a spokesperson of Bol.com.

Consequences for other online stores

The court case could have consequences for other online stores. According to Dutch lawyer Boudewijn Kamphuijs, many online stores have order buttons that do not meet European standards. He advises consumers who have a bill open at Bol.com or other online stores to not pay the full outstanding amount.

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