ACCC releases revised ‘Advertising and selling’ guide

< Date: 30 April 2014

The ACCC has today released its revised Advertising and selling guide to help educate businesses about their rights and obligations when selling and promoting their products and services.


The primary rule of advertising and selling under the Australian Consumer Law is to ensure that any statement you make about your products or services is true, accurate and able to be substantiated.


This includes any statement you make in television or radio advertisements, in catalogues, on labels, on websites, in contracts (or during contract negotiations), over the telephone, in correspondence (such as letters or emails) or in person.


It is also important to remember:

  • If you use ‘was/now’ or ‘strike through’ pricing, take care not to mislead consumers about the savings they can achieve.
  • The same rules apply to online businesses and bricks and mortar stores.
  • Don’t bury any qualifications or disclaimers in the fine print – they need to be prominent and clear to avoid any potential confusion that may be caused by the advertised price.

The revised guide provides examples of conduct likely to breach the law, and practical tips for advertising and selling. It also includes new guidance for businesses on the use of online marketing vehicles such as social media, online reviews and online group buying, and on two-price comparison advertising (‘was/now’ or ‘strike through’ pricing). The ACCC has also produced a short video on using ‘was/now’ pricing.


For more information


Call the ACCC small business helpline on 1300 302 021 if you have any queries.