Before you sell

It is illegal for businesses to give false or misleading information or create a misleading impression about a product or service. Business must also be able to substantiate any claims they make about the products or services they offer for sale.

This applies to anyone in trade – from big players like major retailers, airlines and department stores, to small or temporary businesses like a food truck or souvenir stand.

The Fair Trading Act covers all aspects of the promotion and sale of goods and services. It includes anything you say about a product or service, either verbally or in writing. It also includes an impression given by pictures, advertisements, promotional material or a sales pitch, or by something which is not said – but is important information that is left out.

Complying with the Consumer Guarantees Act

You must meet minimum guarantees for the products and services you sell to consumers. These include that goods are of an acceptable quality and that repair facilities, refunds or replacements will be available for a reasonable time if goods are faulty or services are substandard.

Read more about your Consumer Guarantees Act obligations on the Consumer Protection website.

Mobile traders

The laws that mobile traders must comply with are changing and from 1 June 2020.

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Pricing your products or services

When deciding on your pricing, you must take care not to mislead or deceive consumers. Any representations you make about price must be clear, accurate and unambiguous.

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Selling online

The internet has given businesses the opportunity to sell to anyone no matter where they are.

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Selling at auction

Auctions have always been a popular sales technique, used to sell many types of goods from small household items through to cars and houses.

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