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Ecommerce Forum

Selling online information online
ebooks, information etc.

 2:09 am on Aug 30, 2000 (gmt 0)

I plan on selling online information as follows briefly:
1)Customer finds information he wants to purchase from us. He (she)then pays via credit card and a URL ( or database record) is returned to him with the corresponding information upon confirmation of CC details.
can anyone outline any problems or pitfalls with conducting business in this manner (fraud, tax liabilities, chargebacks, preferred cc processor etc.)

Thanks for any input.



 3:58 am on Aug 30, 2000 (gmt 0)

There are many companies selling straight ip content in that exact same manner. RC just posted about HotDispatch that does the exact same thing. NorthernLight has its pay-per-document service. Unless I am missing something in your model, what's the problem that you see?


 4:10 am on Aug 30, 2000 (gmt 0)


I don't see any problem I was just trying to get feedback from anyone who has done or who knows about this type of transaction. I've been looking into different merchant accounts etc. to try and find the easiest and lowest cost method for this type of transaction. I'm also worried about having a lot of charge backs in that once people receive the information, they refute the charges etc.

I'll look for RC's post. Thanks


 5:48 am on Aug 30, 2000 (gmt 0)


I've been doing something similar for quite a while. Generally, you can avoid charges backs buy a liberal refund policy. Out of 500 sales, one was an obvious rip off, the guy knew if he complained to the CC company he'd be refunded and walked with the product. That's surprisingly good results to my way of thinking...

If you expect to do small volume initially or have a small mark up consider using PayPal at [x.com...] or ClickBank at [clickbank.com...] to avoid the hassle and expense of a merchant account. PayPal is cheaper per transaction but a US only service, ClickBank accepts a much variety range of CCs and debit cards.



 6:41 am on Aug 30, 2000 (gmt 0)


Thanks for the info about clickbank. I just need to crunch some numbers to see which in the long run will have a lower cost (merchant account or clickbank). It appears that both methods take out a nice margin for themselves.
I'm setting up a "matchmaking" service and I was thinking that once people had the requested info, they might not want to honor their payment.


 5:05 pm on Aug 30, 2000 (gmt 0)

The advantage to ClickBank over a merchant account is it's pay as you go. A merchant account has monthly costs whether you make sales or not... Very costly to a startup. Transitioning to a merchant account after site is established and the income warrents may be more economical.

As to people not paying, if they get what they are led to expect from your advertising, nearly all pay their bill.


 1:22 am on Sep 1, 2000 (gmt 0)


Excellent suggestion as this will allow us to see how sales go without too much unnecessary expenditure.

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