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An online shop creates a ‘virtual shopping basket’ of all the items you choose when shopping. This basket is a list of the items, including their cost.

Buying locally
Buying goods in a ‘real’ shop, on the street, where you see and touch the goods before purchase.

The screen where your purchases are listed out for your approval, prior to payment. In many online shops, the checkout is also where the online shop system calculates your shipping charges.

Confirmation email
An email sent to you by an online shop, airline or other website, which confirms the details of a transaction you have just completed. A confirmation email will typically review what you have just purchased, as well as giving additional information such as a flight reference, or delivery details. A confirmation email remains available in the longer term (once you receive an email, you can print it out, save it, etc.), and is typically used as a record of a web-based transaction, which is no longer visible after you leave a website.

Consumer goods
Goods that are aimed at the mass consumer market. Good examples are electronics, books and CDs, clothing, sports equipment, etc. This allows you to shop with confidence overseas. Some countries
use different standards and systems to others. For example, ‘Region 1’ DVDs do not play on many Irish DVD players, and ‘SECAM’ televisions do not work in Ireland.

Credit card
Most online shops accept Visa and Mastercard credit cards. A majority also accept American Express and Diners Club, while some also take lesser-known cards such as JCB, etc.

Forwarded to a secure server
It is common for small online shops not to handle credit cards themselves, because of the cost of security measures. Instead, they send (‘forward’) the user to a company that specialises in handling credit card transactions, where you make the payment. Such companies use secure servers to protect your credit card details. Afterwards, the payments website tells the shop website that your payment has gone through and your order can be shipped.

Grey market
Global consumer goods producers often set different prices for their products in different countries. Some businesses buy wholesale goods in one country and then sell them on a retail basis in a ‘more expensive’ country. This is referred to as ‘the grey market’. While not usually illegal, it is not what the producers intended.

The unique number on every edition of every book that identifies it. Useful if you are looking for a particular edition of a particular book.

Online attack
The possibility exists for malicious people to eavesdrop on, and to intercept, communications going from computer to computer across the Internet. This is not easy to do and is relatively rare, since finding the right information to attack in the ‘chatter’ on the Internet is difficult, and the rewards are small.

An item sent back to the shop (usually by post), for repair or replacement.

Returns policy
Shops have rules under which they are prepared to allow you to return goods to them. In many cases, returns are limited to seven days after receipt of goods. While local shops are governed by national legislation such as the Sales of Goods Acts, these often do not apply across national borders.

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