Click Frenzy clothing retailers put on notice by ACCC

Watchdog tells a dozen retailers to clean up their policies.

Several large clothing retailers have been put on notice by the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) for likely violating guaranteed consumer rights during the popular Click Frenzy sale.

The ACCC has asked 12 retailers to amend their online returns policies to avoid confusing or misleading consumers, says deputy chair Dr Michael Schaper.

"This year the ACCC has received over 750 complaints regarding consumer guarantees for clothing purchases," he says.

"We are reviewing the policies of retailers at busy times such as Click Frenzy, in the lead up to Christmas and during the Boxing Day sales period."

The ACCC did not reply to CHOICE's request to name the retailers in question.

More than 500 retailers participate in Click Frenzy, the popular 24-hour sale that took place on 14 November this year. 

Chief executive of the online platform Grant Arnott says retailers need to be "mindful of their obligations to consumers".

"As online shopping continues to grow...there will no doubt be more eyes on compliance," he says. "That will lead to improvements in online business practices."

Shoppers have the right to request an exchange or refund if a product has a major fault, says Dr Schaper, or a repair if it has a minor fault.

"Misleading representations regarding online refunds and returns are one of the most complained about issues reported to the ACCC," he says.

"Already this year, the ACCC has received over 24,000 contacts about consumer guarantees so it is important for us warn the retail sector and educate consumers as we enter the busiest shopping period of the year."

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Updated, 17 Nov: This article has been updated to include commentary from Click Frenzy, the online platform referenced by the ACCC.