What is an offer
An offer is an offer to participate in a transaction . For example, the seller writes the cost of goods on the price tag. So he declares that he is ready to give the goods for the specified amount. The second party can ignore the proposal or agree to it, or accept. In the described situation with the store, a person will approach the seller and exchange the item for money.
The offer must clearly indicate all the essential terms of the potential transaction. We will talk about exactly what conditions are in question below, but they describe all the important criteria of the contract. Acceptance in most cases must also be unambiguous . Suppose a client pays for something or enters a code from SMS. It is difficult to say that he did it by accident – it clearly requires conscious action. However, sometimes silence is also considered an acceptance, but only if there is already an agreement of the parties on this matter, some law has been adopted, or customs interfere in the matter.
The offer is public, when anyone can respond to the offer, or personal. The second case works if, for example, the hairdresser sends you a birthday letter with an invitation to a haircut at a reduced price. The promotion is available only to you, but you still do not have to agree to it – only if you are interested in it. But anyone will not be able to take advantage of the invitation, because it is nominal.
How is an offer different from a contract?
The contract is the result of accepting the offer.
Let’s say an educational platform sells courses . She places the conditions of training and its cost on her website and indicates that acceptance will be payment. This is an offer. The student finds a course and transfers money to the platform. He accepts the offer. Since then, a contract has been concluded between the company and the client.
It is not necessary to sign the contract directly on paper.
Why does a business need an offer?
First of all, we are talking about a business that sells goods and services via the Internet, but not only.
With an offer less paperwork
If a company produces standard goods or services, an offer can significantly simplify the process of interaction. For example, a blogger sells a photography course. He can make a website and place an offer on it with a proposal to undergo training. Clients visit the page, pay, study. The alternative is to negotiate the conditions with each, sign a paper contract in which they will be indicated. Sounds like something much more complicated.
Of course, if the goods or services are not typical, you will have to negotiate orders, so the offer will not work here.
If long-term cooperation is expected, the offer will help reduce the number of papers due to silence as an acceptance. So, one company makes another one commercial per month. They could exchange acts of acceptance and transfer. One side sends two copies of the document, the second signs them, returns one back … Or they may prescribe that silence (read: no claims) within five days from the date of receipt of the act is considered an acceptance. Very convenient: if everyone is happy with everything, no need to bother. You will have to act actively only if problems arise.
It’s better financially
The conclusion of contracts is not only filling out paperwork. They need to be delivered to the second party, which involves some costs. Only then will the payment be made. With an offer, you won’t have to transport documents anywhere, and the money will be sent from the company’s client at the time of acceptance (if it is payment, of course).
The offer can provide for inconvenient moments
You’ve probably seen jokes about microwave oven instructions that say you can’t put a cat in the oven. In fact, this is not very funny: such advice arises in the wake of real incidents. Of course, you can always throw up your hands and say: well, who do you have to be to put an animal in the microwave. And the other side will answer: “There was nothing in the instructions that it was not necessary to do this. So it’s your fault.”
The offer helps to include “fool proof”. If you thoughtfully prescribe the conditions, you can relieve yourself of responsibility for the strange and dubious actions of customers. After all, if a person accepted the offer, then he agrees with its content. From now on, the cat’s health is his responsibility.
What to include in an offer
We have reached those very essential conditions. There is no closed list of them, and “materiality” is often determined by the court in the event of disagreements. And yet, some things must be spelled out necessarily:
- Who is the offeror – that is, the one who offers the offer. You will have to specify all the details – just like in the contract. But it is not necessary to insert them at the beginning of the text and immediately scare the reader.
- Who is the acceptor – the recipient of the offer. If there are any important conditions due to which not everyone can respond to the proposal, this must be indicated. Assume that delivery is carried out only within a specific area. Therefore, only a resident of a certain territory can become a client.
- The subject of the offer is a description of the goods or services. It is not necessary to specify all characteristics. You can, for example, refer to the catalog, where information about all positions is already there.
- The cost of goods or services, payment method, terms of delivery, refund.
- Offer acceptance – what the client must do to show that he has accepted the offer. It is better to provide here for something very obvious, which is easy to confirm. Payment from this point of view fits perfectly.
- Conditions for changing the offer, if it implies long-term cooperation. How the client will understand that something has changed, and how he will confirm that he agrees to continue the business relationship.
In general, an offer can be drawn up in almost any form, there are no strict requirements here. To make it clearer how a document might look, let’s look at examples:
How to make sure that the client has read the offer
In short: there is absolutely no way to understand this. Who among us has not pressed the “Agree” button without reading long user agreements and other documents. So something else is important here.
Your task is to do everything so that the client cannot prove that he did not read the offer because of you.
That is, you must offer the document in such a way that it can only be ignored intentionally. For example, often online stores offer the user to check the box before paying, that he is familiar with the offer. And here is a link to it. This is a great option and a case where you don’t have to reinvent the wheel. Feel free to use.
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