Learning about the item and the seller

When purchasing online it's pretty important to get your hands on as much information as possible – we'd hate to see you end up with something you weren't expecting!

You can ask the seller questions on auctions and Motors classified listings, or 'email the seller' on all classified listings.


Use the various options to filter down your search results. You can filter by New Zealand sellers only by scrolling to the bottom of the 'Location' options.

You can search expired listings too, by clicking the down arrow next to the magnifying glass on the search bar and hit 'Search expired listings'.

Other search tips:

  • Use quotes " " to find an exact phrase, e.g. "Bob the Builder"
  • Use an asterisk * to search a partial word, e.g. Tea cup* matches cupcups and cupboard
  • Use an uppercase OR between two search terms to find either one of the terms, e.g. Canon OR Nikon will give you results for either one of those brands. You can also use a pipe | to perform this function, e.g. Canon | Nikon
  • Use an uppercase NOT with two search terms to find the first term but ignore the second term, e.g. iPod NOT shuffle will give you results for iPods but exclude references to shuffle. You can also use a minus sign – immediately before the second term to perform this function, e.g. iPod – shuffle
  • By default, Trade Me will find variations of search terms, e.g. fish will give you results for fish and fishing. Use a plus sign + immediately before a search term to find only that exact term, e.g. +fish



When you ask a question, we'll email the seller letting them know a question has been asked. When the seller responds we'll pop you an email with their answer.

On a general auction, your question won't be visible until the seller answers it, or the auction closes. On a Motors listing, your question will be visible as soon as you've asked it.

To use the Q&A you'll need to be an authenticated member.

Emailing the seller

When you email the seller, your private enquiry is sent directly to them via Trade Me. They'll be provided your email address so you can continue messaging. To help you keep track, you can have a copy of your message sent to you.

About the seller

There are a number of things you can look for to help you decide whether a seller is trustworthy or not. Every trader has a feedback rating, the higher the rating the more trades they've successfully completed. Keep an eye out for the Address Verified icon – these members have had their address confirmed by us.

The seller is not located in NZ or Australia 

Buying and selling is limited to members located in New Zealand and Australia, except where a member has been specifically accepted as an 'international' seller by Trade Me.

Only international sellers who meet our requirements are allowed to sell from overseas. Accepted international sellers only offer Ping and Pay Now, so we've got your back with Buyer Protection.

If you spot a seller who appears to be selling from overseas but has their location set somewhere else, feel free to let us know.


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