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What You Need to Know About the Key Legal Aspects of Selling Goods Online

Updated: 3 days ago

When you're selling products or services online, it's important to be aware of the legal aspects involved. Depending on what you're selling, you may need to obtain a license or permit, and there are certain consumer protections that apply when selling online. In this blog post, we'll briefly touch on some of the key legal aspects of selling online so that you can be sure you're in compliance with the law.

Terms and Conditions

The first thing you need to do is create a set of terms and conditions for your website. This will spell out the rules for using your site, what users can expect from you, and what you expect from them. It's important to have this in place so that everyone is on the same page and knows what to expect. Failure to do this could result in legal problems down the road.

We have a range of robust and legally drafted template terms and conditions for various business models. Check out our template shop if you are in need of a quality template T&Cs. Otherwise we love to draft custom T&Cs so get in touch today.

Privacy Policy

Another important aspect of selling online is having a privacy policy in place. This will let customers know how you plan on using their personal information, such as their name, address, and credit card number. It's important to be clear about how this information will be used so that customers can make an informed decision about whether or not they want to do business with you.

Shipping and Returns Policy

If you're selling physical goods, you'll also need to have a shipping and returns policy in place. This should spell out how much it will cost to ship items, how long it will take for them to arrive, and what your policy is for returns and refunds. Again, it's important to be as clear and concise as possible so that there are no misunderstandings down the road.

The Australian Consumer Law ("ACL") governs effects your returns policy and your obligations to fix any defects in your products and services. We touch on this below, but it is important for you to understand your obligations under the ACL before launching your business.

Obtaining a Licence or Permit

Depending on the type of product or service you're selling, you may need to obtain a licence or permit before doing business. For example, if you're planning on selling food products, you'll need to obtain a food licence from your local health department. If you're selling alcohol, tobacco, or other regulated products, there may be additional licences or permits required.

Every state across Australia has different requirements for licencing and permits, and they differ across industries. For a comprehensive look at what is required in your state and for your industry visit

Consumer Protections When Selling Online

When selling online, there are certain consumer protections that apply in order to safeguard buyers from fraudulent or deceptive practices. For example, the ACL guarantees a range of rights to consumers, including the right to goods and services that are of acceptable quality, match their description, and are fit for their intended purpose. Consumers are also entitled to remedies like repairs, replacements, refunds, and compensation for damages when products or services fail to meet these guarantees.

The ACL also has rules in place prohibiting the use of unfair or deceptive marketing practices, such as false advertising. Be sure to familiarise yourself with these and other consumer protection laws before selling online.

These are just a few of the key legal aspects you need to be aware of when selling products or services online. By taking the time to understand these issues, you can avoid potential legal problems down the road. If you have any questions about these or other legal issues, be sure to reach out to us as we love a chat - or (07) 3041 4063

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