Supermarkets and shopping malls utilize techniques to sell discounted products without losing profits. A Walmart employee named Celia Cook, who goes by the username @powerpellets on TikTok, has revealed some concerning information about the clearance section at the retail chain.
In a viral video, Cook shared a “quick clearance lesson” that has led many consumers to question the validity of discount labels in Walmart’s stores.
Not all products with clearance labels at Walmart are discounted.
While shoppers typically expect to find good deals in the clearance section, Cook’s video revealed that not all items with clearance labels are discounted products. For instance, Cook found a package of Hefty recycling bags with a clearance label of $9.77, but these bags were not on clearance.
Walmart had removed them from their inventory. This raises questions about why these bags bore a clearance label if they were not genuine clearance products. In contrast, Cook also showed a five-piece bed sheet set with a legitimate clearance label that revealed the original price of $34.94 and the reduced price of $9.
Customers might buy full-priced items, believing they are receiving a discount.
This demonstrates a clear difference between genuine clearance products and items no longer sold in the store. Cook pointed out that prices can change and products can sell out before a genuine clearance price is applied.
This can lead customers to purchase full-price items, thinking they are getting a discount. Comments on Cook’s video indicate that many customers have noticed a decline in the quality of deals in Walmart’s clearance section. Some claim that discounts rarely exceed 25%, which they argue does not constitute a true clearance price.
Walmart has agreed to pay $3 million.
Some Walmart employees have offered alternative explanations. For example, they suggest that available labels are used if the correct labels cannot be found. Others argue that the quality of signage might be due to the lack of effort by employees in using price printers. It’s worth noting, however, that Hefty bags are no longer available in Walmart stores due to a class-action lawsuit.
The lawsuit alleged that Hefty’s parent company misled consumers by claiming that their recycling bags were recyclable, despite this not being the case. As a result, the company agreed to pay $3 millions in September 2023 to settle the lawsuit, benefiting consumers who purchased the bags between July 2018 and August 2023.
This TikTok video has raised consumer concerns about transparency and ethics in retail clearance practices. Questions about the legitimacy of discount labels at Walmart will undoubtedly persist, and shoppers may be more cautious in the future when seeking genuine bargains in the clearance section.