I would really recommend you don’t do this as it will kill your conversion rates. Very few of the major ecommerce sites do this. Why do you need to?
The legal issues are also a bit muddy. Are you trying to remove rights from your customers by getting them to agree to something they would not normally agree to? If so it is possible that in the UK certainly you could be challenged under trading laws.
Having an optional terms and conditions page is standard and even asking buyers to check a box to accept the terms but not a pop-up.
What do other people think?
I think your right Jonathon. I was always told think of each box / input or whatever on the checkout as an obstacle – the more you have the less likely you are to make the sale.
The best way to do this is create some terms and conditions either as a static page and/or as a PDF and then include a link to these in the buyers email.
I used the following as the basis for my terms and conditions:
Office of Fair Trading Distance selling regulations – http://www.scribd.com/doc/11598858/Oft-Distance-Selling-Regs
I’m sure the example terms could be adapted to suit most countries guidelines as they set out the information in a clean and concise manner. You can view my terms at http://collateit.co.uk/pages/terms
Hope this helps.
I’ve just read the Model terms document and it states
Your terms must be made available so that they can be easily stored or printed. Some information must be provided to the consumer in a durable form, and it is therefore good practice to include a copy of the order details and your standard terms in any order confirmation e-mail, and/or on delivery.
...and this is what I found on a recent purchase from www.ebuyer.com
Under the new Distance Selling Regulations, you are entitled to cancel this contract with Ebuyer within seven working days after receipt of the goods purchased. If you decide to cancel the contract within this timeframe a full refund will be issued. Please note; this right of cancellation does not include computer software unsealed by you and consumable goods that, due to their nature, cannot be returned. To view our full terms and conditions, please log on to www.ebuyer.com.
I would suggest you to ask the users to just click the Buy button on your website. A pop-up button would reduce the conversion rates of your website.
Also, users usually don't read the terms of the agreement. So you are better off with the rules and terms agreed upon by the users during the limited interaction with the users.