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  #1  
Old 09 January 2007, 05:12 PM
YoShIe
 
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Default Retail secret codes

This morning the folks on the morning radio show I usually listen to during my commute were talking about these secret codes that retail chains use in order to identify sales items, specifically final markdowns.

1. TARGET: Any sales item with a price ending in "4" is considered the final markdown and will not go down further in price.

2. THE GAP: Any sales item with a price ending in "7" is considered the final markdown and will not go down further in price. Usually, unsold items with this code are supposedly sent to closeout stores like OddJob within a few weeks of the markdown.

3. CHRISTMAS TREE SHOP: Apparently, they have "special" sales on a daily basis. Items marked as for sale that have a yellow tag start the day at 50% off, and then the savings are supposedly increased throughout the day, going as high as 99% by the last hours before closing. Many items on sale have ended the day priced as low as $0.10 to $0.07 each.

Has anyone heard about this, or any of the other "secret" retail codes?
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  #2  
Old 09 January 2007, 05:22 PM
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Ana Ng Ana Ng is offline
 
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Consumerist covered this yesterday, too, but just about Target.

I use NaughtyCodes and RetailMeNot whenever I shop online.
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  #3  
Old 09 January 2007, 05:22 PM
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I can't speak for the others, but Targe has this super secret code called 'clearance'. Items market with orange clearance tags and placed in the secret clearance section probably won't go down anymore in price.

Beach...don't let on that you know, or they might change the system...Life!
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  #4  
Old 09 January 2007, 05:28 PM
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Ana Ng Ana Ng is offline
 
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Beach, the OP refers to the cent amount. When it goes down to, say, 6.24, it won't go down further so snap it up.

If you're a clearance scourer, it's good advice if it's true.

And those damn stickers are really freaking hard to remove!
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  #5  
Old 09 January 2007, 05:30 PM
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Sears used to have price codes on their tags. I don't know if they use this anymore or not.

A letter, followed by a number indicated what the original price of the item was. A = 10, b = 20 and so on. So an item marked A7 would have been 17.99. A C9 would be 39.99. This came in handy when customers tried to change a price themselves, or when processing a return where the item was a gift and had half the tag torn off.
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  #6  
Old 09 January 2007, 05:46 PM
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Perhaps the codes also have another meaning. According to this article, some numbers (like 2, 3, 7, & 10) are more appealing to our subconscience and thus may stimulate buying.
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  #7  
Old 09 January 2007, 05:56 PM
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Hmm. I've worked in retail in the past and while we had our own last-digit codes for clearance items, that most certainly did *not* mean that they would never go down in price. Actually, when I sold computers that little code often meant that we *could* grab a manager and negotiate the price downward because by that point we were trying to get anything we could for the thing (usually this would be a display model that had been running nonstop for several months, so it's not like these people weren't still getting what they paid for). Even normal shelf-placed product might get a clearance price and have that price be adjusted either by relabeling it or just by the store lowering the price.
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  #8  
Old 09 January 2007, 05:56 PM
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Signora Del Drago Signora Del Drago is offline
 
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When you see an alpha code on price tags, it more than likely is the actual cost of the item. When I managed the bookstore at the local college, our code word was pathfinder, so paee would represent 12.99 for the cost and would be printed on the sticker, along with the price charged. I suppose now there are no price stickers on the books and supplies, just the usual bar codes.

ETA:
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ana Ng View Post
I use NaughtyCodes and RetailMeNot whenever I shop online.
Hey, thanks! I just found a sale on bath towels for 50% off, and they're good towels, too!
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  #9  
Old 09 January 2007, 09:53 PM
senbassador
 
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Default even IF its true

or if they have "secret" codes in their scanner, thats just to better keep track of things in their inventory. Seriously, running a store with thousands of products and keeping track of everything isn't easy. Its common sense to make some kind of note that they've just marked down this product so they dont mark it down again. In any case, I am sure the manager has the final say when something gets a markdown or not.
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  #10  
Old 09 January 2007, 10:04 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by YoShIe View Post

Has anyone heard about this, or any of the other "secret" retail codes?
I can tell you that Home Despot definitely uses this system. Prices that are green tagged always end in 6. That way all the employees know for sure that it is a clearance item and if it does not sell within X amount of days, it is thrown in the dumpster.

Remark "or do they mark it with 666, being that Home Depot is the Devil!" gullabull
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  #11  
Old 09 January 2007, 10:32 PM
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Does Home Depot really throw unsold clearance products in the dumpster? I thought that they were pretty big supporters of Habitat for Humanity, and ften donated unsold items to HfH's resale stores (the name of the stores esapes me).
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  #12  
Old 09 January 2007, 10:43 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lynnejanet View Post
Does Home Depot really throw unsold clearance products in the dumpster? I thought that they were pretty big supporters of Habitat for Humanity, and ften donated unsold items to HfH's resale stores (the name of the stores esapes me).
When I worked at Home Despot, I do not know of one thing they ever donated. All items that they could not sell had to go into their special dumpster that had a crusher. I can't even begin to count the number of new items I was ordered to "throw out" because they were either floor models(brand new, never used) that they couldn't sell or items that weren't selling fast enough and were being replaced by new product. All Home Depot is ever worried about is making more damn money for all their big brass.

Sorry for the mini-rant.
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  #13  
Old 10 January 2007, 02:01 AM
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I recall that my when my dad worked for Sears in the 60's and 70's, they would periodically sell old/returned/damaged etc. mdse to the employees at greatly reduced prices - He brought home a tent that he bought for a dollar because the customer returned it dirty and they couldn't sell it. However, they sent a memo to the employees that this practice was being discontinued due to the problem of employees purposely damaging goods so that they could buy them at a discount.

When I worked for Sears back in the 80's, I recall seeing the price codes which were mentioned in Spam's post. They were very helpful when customers tore the price portion of the tag off, as we could tell the original selling price of the mdse. if the tag was torn off. We'd always write a red line through the price code if the item was purchased on sale. Yet the customers would bring them back with no receipt and claim they paid full price.
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  #14  
Old 10 January 2007, 02:16 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by remarkgullabull View Post
When I worked at Home Despot, I do not know of one thing they ever donated. All items that they could not sell had to go into their special dumpster that had a crusher. I can't even begin to count the number of new items I was ordered to "throw out" because they were either floor models(brand new, never used) that they couldn't sell or items that weren't selling fast enough and were being replaced by new product. All Home Depot is ever worried about is making more damn money for all their big brass.

Sorry for the mini-rant.
Off topic of OP, but this amazes me that HD does this. I can't think of a compelling reason that they'd do this.
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  #15  
Old 10 January 2007, 02:54 AM
YoShIe
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by remarkgullabull View Post
When I worked at Home Despot, I do not know of one thing they ever donated. All items that they could not sell had to go into their special dumpster that had a crusher. I can't even begin to count the number of new items I was ordered to "throw out" because they were either floor models(brand new, never used) that they couldn't sell or items that weren't selling fast enough and were being replaced by new product. All Home Depot is ever worried about is making more damn money for all their big brass.

Sorry for the mini-rant.
I've heard this as well, as my mom worked as a rep for HOME DEPOT for over a year (across 11 stores) - as well as the fact that anything that is found opened is also destroyed via the crusher. She used to come home with hundreds of batteries (a rep would need 2-3 for something, and have to toss the whole package). Talk about the biggest waste in town... She once told me that they explained it as similar to why fast food restraunts toss everything that is not sold - to prevent the employees (and customers) from damaging something on purpose in order to get it free/discounted, etc. Dunno how true this is, but it makes sense (and is exactly how it was explained to me long ago in my McDonalds' days as well).

(returns from OT ranting)
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  #16  
Old 10 January 2007, 03:15 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Beachlife! View Post
I can't speak for the others, but Targe has this super secret code called 'clearance'. Items market with orange clearance tags and placed in the secret clearance section probably won't go down anymore in price.

Beach...don't let on that you know, or they might change the system...Life!
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ana Ng View Post
Beach, the OP refers to the cent amount. When it goes down to, say, 6.24, it won't go down further so snap it up.

If you're a clearance scourer, it's good advice if it's true.

And those damn stickers are really freaking hard to remove!
Well, I just spent a good deal of time composing a nice long reply to the two of you only to lose the whole thing when I hit submit because apparently I'd timed out in the middle of my reply????!!!!?? What the heck is that all about? I'm replying. How long do I have to reply, and why is there a time limit fercryin'outloud?

At any rate I'm tired and going to bed. If no one's nailed it by tomorrow, maybe I'll try again.
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  #17  
Old 10 January 2007, 08:35 AM
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The only specail code I know about at work(drug store) is the letter/item number code. There is a letter and item number above the price. The price tags come from the warehouse. It indicated when the item was processed at the warehouse and shipped. A= January B=February etc. I always look at the letter to indicate how 'fresh' the item is before buying based on that. I can tell if an item is on the shelf for a good amount of time,
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  #18  
Old 10 January 2007, 12:56 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by YoShIe View Post
I've heard this as well, as my mom worked as a rep for HOME DEPOT for over a year (across 11 stores) - as well as the fact that anything that is found opened is also destroyed via the crusher. She used to come home with hundreds of batteries (a rep would need 2-3 for something, and have to toss the whole package). Talk about the biggest waste in town... She once told me that they explained it as similar to why fast food restraunts toss everything that is not sold - to prevent the employees (and customers) from damaging something on purpose in order to get it free/discounted, etc. Dunno how true this is, but it makes sense (and is exactly how it was explained to me long ago in my McDonalds' days as well).
Sometimes offering damaged/dirty/opened goods for sale is just asking for a lawsuit. This is especially true with food products. A smart business will never try to sell these.

There are customers on a budget who only buy when an item is at a discount. Not offering the item at a discount means less money for the business when selling to this customer.

There are customers with a need who will buy an item whether it is discounted or not. Offering the item at a discount means less money for the business when selling to this customer.

So the question becomes does the business management think there more "on a budget" customers or more "with a need" customers? If the management thinks the profit of selling to "with a need" customers is greater then those damaged goods will get destroyed. Good for the business but also a complete waste of perfectly usable items.
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  #19  
Old 10 January 2007, 01:29 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Signora Del Drago View Post
When you see an alpha code on price tags, it more than likely is the actual cost of the item.
When I worked at Shopko (it's a store like Walmart or Kmart), they used letters to show the cost of the item on the price tag (they used the letters heavy stock, it meant the numbers from 0-9 or something like that, don't remember exactly)

Michigan Girl
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  #20  
Old 10 January 2007, 01:54 PM
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Having worked for Target I can address some of these questions. The numbers things are no secret (we tell customers what the numbers mean if they ask us), but out clearance stickers have a small number on the (i think left top) corner whick represents the percentage off. It starts at 10, then goes to 15, 30, 50, 75 and the lowest it gets is 90, then it goes back to the manufacturer, we only throw it away if its perishable, but we note it for the distributor.

Clearance prices don't allways get to 90 percent either, because we stop getting the product in shortly before it goes clearance, and once its gone, its gone. Clearance has different policies by department as well.

Also display models can only be sold on certain things. Furniture is one thing we never sell the display of due to liability (we auction them off for charity to the employees).
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