Online Clearance Sales Begin - InformationWeek

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Online Clearance Sales Begin

Just like their brick-and-mortar counterparts, online retailers are taking down the Christmas decorations and hanging up the clearance sale signs this week.

Sites from Macys.com to Landsend.com are highlighting seasonal merchandise they want to move. And today, Amazon.com will launch an outlet store that will offer bargains 365 days a year. Although Amazon has previously had discounted areas in each of its online stores, it is now pulling all the bargains together in one easy-to-find location. "We're launching at this time of year because we know this is the time that bargain-hunters love to shop," says a spokesperson, "but we'll have something for them every day of the year."

BlueLight.com, meanwhile, started its first annual Blowout Sale on Tuesday, offering discounts of up to 75% on leftover merchandise through Jan. 11. The sale coincides with a similar storewide sale at all outlets of BlueLight parent Kmart Corp., but it will run longer, since the online store doesn't need time to physically restock shelves with spring merchandise, a spokesman says.

BlueLight also is instituting a change at its site designed to save money for the company rather than the consumer. In the next two weeks, the company says, it will begin limiting the free Internet service it offers consumers to 25 hours a month. The 5.5 million users of BlueLight's ISP service also will get direct-marketing pitches pointing them to bargains on the site -- and mimicking the Kmart "blue light specials" that gave the site its name.

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