Advertising Over The Internet and Complying with FTC Regulations

Once you have developed a final advertising and marketing plan for your beading business, the next step is to begin turning your ideas into a reality. You may have plenty of ideas of how to appeal to your target market, but how you will reach them is crucial to your success.

Television, radio, magazines and newspapers have long been popular mediums for advertising, but the Digital Age has brought about the Internet. For years, the World Wide Web played a small part in how businesses advertised their goods and services. However, almost everyone has access to the Internet in the 21st century, making it more important than ever to utilize this medium for advertising purposes.

If you wish to market your goods and services over the World Wide Web, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has a series of rules and regulations that you must follow. The FTC was developed to protect consumers from fictitious advertising and potential financial harm.

A product or service that is deemed deceptive is unlawful and not supported by the FTC. Your goods may follow under this category if:
  • The product misleads consumers
  • It can affect consumer behaviors and decisions about the product
Advertising Over The Internet and Complying with FTC Regulations
The FTC prohibits deceptive advertising through all mediums, ranging from television to the Internet. In order to avoid publishing false information through Internet advertising, try to be as honest as possible about your goods and services.

For example, if you advertise that your company provides an item for a certain price, you must uphold your promise in order to avoid scrutiny from the FTC. This especially applies to individuals who are attempting to sell products with medical benefits. Companies must have the research to properly cite the information on their advertisements.

In almost all cases, the entrepreneur will be held responsible for any deception that occurs within his or her marketing strategy. An advertising group or agency must review all marketing tactics prior to letting them hit the media. If an advertisement lists false information, a business may still be held responsible for the damages even if it is retracted.

The FTC also prohibits small business owners from hiding information in their advertisements. This means no embedding crucial consumer data in the fine print. The FTC specifically notes that disclaimers and warnings must be "clean and conspicuous" to consumers prior to making a purchase.

Promises through online advertisements must also be fulfilled, according to the FTC. If you say that you will refund unsatisfied customers, you must do so in order to comply with regulations. Any demonstrations that you use in Internet advertisements must also be truthful representations of your goods and services.

The FTC has strict limitations when it comes to advertising jewelry online. Depending on the type of material you use to create your jewelry, you must accurately list the elements in your advertisement. For instance, there are different standards for when you can list a product as "gold," as opposed to "gold plated."

You must also specify any type of gemstones included in your jewelry. If you plan on using imitation gems instead of the real deal, you must explain this to consumers prior to purchasing your product. Pearls specifically need to be listed as either cultured or imitation when listed in an online advertisement.

The FTC has a rule for mail and telephone orders as well. Before telling customers that you can ship and deliver jewelry within a certain time span, you must be able to prove that your promise is possible. If you have yet to establish a set time frame for mail and phone orders, it is necessary for you to be able to ship the goods within a 30-day time span.

The customer will have the right to cancel their order after the 30 days have passed. If you cannot ship the product as promised, the FTC requires you to inform the consumer as well. You may be forced to refund the customer for the purchase as a result of the failed shipment.

If you plan to offer a money back guaranteed on your online advertisements, the FTC also ensures that customers will be properly refunded in the event that they are unsatisfied. You are required to inform the consumer of all of the fine details in regards to the guarantee prior to the purchase as well.

FTC regulations can be difficult to comply with at times, but doing so is beneficial to businesses and consumers alike. Taking the time to abide by these limitations can give you the valuable opportunity to advertise your goods and services over the World Wide Web.