Online stores in France fined for misleading promotions
Several online stores, including Amazon, Zalando and H&M, were fined becauses their online promotional campaigns were considered to be misleading. One of the things done was increasing the price and then apply a discount, so it looks like the product is now very cheap by comparison.
International Retail Index 2019 The definitive guide to international retail in 2019 and beyond. How do you rank? Find it out now.
The French Directorate General for Competition Policy, Consumer Affairs and Fraud Control (DGCCRF) issued a total of 2.4 million euro in fines for 19 online stores, Retail Detail Europe wrote. Amazon, Zalando and Le Comptoir des Cotonniers, a French fashion label for women, paid their fines, but there are also companies like H&M who refuse to do so.
The DGCCRF checked physical stores and over 11,000 websites and ended up with 15.000 cases. The governmental bureau is currently also investing vente-privee.com and showroomprive.com. Among the things the DGCCRF found, were companies claiming a certain discount will only be temporary, while they apply it several times throughout the year. Also, several companies increased the price and then applied a discount, so it looked like customers were getting a nice discount.
Right of withdrawal
There were also many problems with the right of withdrawal. In the European Union, consumers of online stores are entitled to a 14-day withdrawal period. But sometimes, this period wasn’t mentioned properly or companies were changing the period in order to limit the consumer’s rights.