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I was wondering if you could let me know which one of the following sentences of mine is a natural way to say:

  • That shop sells everything off.
  • That shop sells everything at discount.
  • Everything in that shop is on sale.

For me all of these sentences work, but I am not sure if they are natural or not?

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    Off does not imply a discount unless it is accompanied by an amount or proportion: These shirts are all $5 off. We're selling last year's models at 20% off. To sell off is an intensive form of sell meaning approximately get rid of by sale. "John sold off his interest in the company." – StoneyB Apr 12 '14 at 20:55
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    These sentences communicate different things. Are you wondering about all of them, or are you trying to say one specific thing? – Tyler James Young Apr 12 '14 at 20:58
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The grammatically correct sentence of your three examples is "Everything in that shop is on sale."

"That shop sells everything off" does not sound correct, and "That shop sells everything at discount" would actually need to be "That shop sells everything at a discount."

However, there is subtle meaning in these sentences. If you said "Everything in that shop is on sale.", it implies that the sale is temporary. A regular store would periodically put everything on sale, but will return to regular prices when it's over. (Or if a store is going out of business, saying everything in that shop is on sale is reasonable because it is marked unusually low to get rid of it.)

"That shop sells everything at a discount." implies a permanent discount. Meaning a store that tries to purposely mark everything lower than their competitors. For example, Wal-Mart sells everything at a discount.

You can also describe these types of stores as a noun, "a discount store", as in "Dollarama is a discount store."

  • Thank you very much Kris. It was a comprehensive answer to the real meaning of the word. – A-friend Apr 12 '14 at 21:09

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