Digital Communication


Digital Communication

Order confirmation: content and optimization


An order confirmation is a written document that confirms receipt of an order for a service or product. It must contain all information relating to the buyer, the seller and the products or services purchased. In addition, it must mention the unit price, the final invoice amount, the payment method chosen and the delivery method.

What is an order confirmation?

An order confirmation is a written document that certifies receipt of an order. This may involve ordering a product or service. Order confirmation for products sold on the Internet is generally sent by email.

An order confirmation serves, among other things, to provide customers with precise information about the order placed. Both parties, both the buyer and the seller, can thus check one last time whether there has been any oversight or error. Typically, both have the option to cancel or modify the order. If you are a supplier, this is when Customer Relationship Management begins.

Is it obligatory to send an order confirmation?

Yes, it is mandatory for merchants to immediately send an order confirmation to their customers after receiving it. This allows them to be certain that the order has been received, which is particularly important for e-commerce. When purchasing on the Internet, an order confirmation is generally sent by email.

If sending the order confirmation by email is a problem for you, you must then notify your customers by another means. This could for example be done via a messaging service such as Signal or WhatsApp.

When should an order confirmation be sent?

As a supplier or service provider, you are required to respond as quickly as possible to an order received by sending a written confirmation. Fast shipping is also recommended in order to build customer loyalty. If buyers do not receive confirmation as soon as possible, they may suspect that there was a problem with the order. Worst case scenario, they will decide to buy the product elsewhere and cancel their order from you.

What should an order confirmation contain?

Certain elements must appear in a written order confirmation:

  • Address the buyer with a greeting.
  • Name and address complete company.
  • Billing address of the buyer.
  • Delivery address of the buyer (if different from the billing address).
  • Description accuracy of the merchandise or products.
  • Number of copies merchandise or products.
  • Specificity of the merchandise or products, i.e. color, size, material.
  • Price per net unit and total amount.
  • Details on the right of withdrawal whether it is possible or not.
  • Delivery method desired (standard or express delivery, collection points) as well as the delivery time.
  • Shipping costif there has.
  • Total amount the invoice’s.
  • Payment method desired (e.g. PayPal, credit card, direct debit).
  • Indication of VAT or tax on turnover.
  • Greeting to finalize.

Also don’t forget to include the legal notices. This is also mandatory information. Likewise, a link to your information on the Data protection must appear in your order confirmation. It is also recommended to indicate your contact details for possible questions or complaints, in order to facilitate contact with your customers.

The integration of most of these elements is made compulsory by article L221-13 of the Consumer Code.

What should not be included in an order confirmation?

It is recommended not to use the order confirmation for advertising purposes, since, without the consent of the recipient by Opt-in, any form of self-promotion in emails sent in an automated manner may be subject to sanctions. However, you can easily add certain self-promotion elements such as review requests, newsletter subscriptions or links to social networks.

What is the difference between a contract confirmation and an order confirmation?

A contract confirmation makes it possible to guarantee a contract, previously proposed by a written or oral offer to a potential client. This statement is farm from a legal point of view, it ensures the customer the provision of a service or the delivery of a product under previously defined conditions. As a supplier, you are obliged to execute an order as soon as you have sent such confirmation to your customers. You therefore confirm the conclusion of a contract.

On the other hand, an order confirmation only confirm to the client receiving an order and therefore serves as a control step. Whether it also assumes the function of a sales contract depends on its content and wording. Sometimes, the order confirmation is accompanied by the General Conditions of Sale (CGV), which is equivalent to a contract confirmation.

In most cases, however, the order confirmation by email from an online store does not constitute acceptance of the contract.

If you wish to ensure that this is only a confirmation of an order received, you must make it clear that this is not a contract. This can be conveyed for example by a sentence such as “This email does not constitute the conclusion of a sales contract”.

Confirmation of the firm contract will occur later, for example when the goods are shipped. A shipping confirmation forms part of the contract, which is ultimately concluded by acceptance of the goods.

How to optimize order confirmation?

The primary objective of order confirmations is certainly to confirm to customers a placed order, but they can also strengthen the relationship with the customer. Studies suggest that order confirmations have significantly higher engagement and open rates and generate more revenue than mass emails sent for marketing purposes. Optimizing your order confirmation can therefore be interesting in terms of marketing. Here are some things to consider:

Write the email in a personal way

Address your customers with personal words. Avoid mentioning only impersonal data and facts. A kindly worded “Thank you for your order” has a more positive effect and delights readers if it is followed at the same time by all useful information.

Make sure the structure is clear and well-ordered

An orderly structure not only provides a better overview, it is also a sign of professionalism. Your customers will appreciate a clear order confirmation, in which all information is available at a glance. For example, a board is ideal for this purpose.

Include recognizable elements of your brand

Your logo, whether it is text, an image or an acronym, must absolutely appear in your order confirmation. By anchoring it in the minds of your customers, you increase the recognition value of your brand.

In the spirit of Corporate Identity, be sure to adapt the tone of your text to your company, your customers and the presentation of your products.

Indicate your contact details

It is also recommended that you clearly indicate the necessary contact details in your order confirmation. This will allow your customers to easily contact you if they have any questions.

Optimize for mobile devices

Because a large part of order confirmations are read on mobile phones, make absolutely sure that your design is optimized, therefore it is a Responsive Design. Use mobile-optimized elements, such as touch buttons, large enough font, and a single-column layout, to ensure good readability on small screens.

Please read the legal notices in force on this article.

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