Forum: Beware misleading ad practice by retailers

Shoppers in a mall in Singapore.
Shoppers in a mall in Singapore.PHOTO: ST FILE

Many retailers these days use false advertising to attract people into their stores. One such tactic used often on advertisement banners and posters is the words "20% off storewide".

These misleading advertisements leave many consumers disappointed and frustrated at the cashier counters when they realise that their time has been wasted as most of the items they picked are not applicable for the sale.

"Storewide" is defined as "applying to all the merchandise". Therefore, it should not be tagged with terms and conditions (*T&Cs apply).

Retailers who use the word "storewide" so blatantly in their advertisements are in fact deceiving and misleading consumers. This constitutes false advertising.

"Storewide" is defined as "applying to all the merchandise". Therefore, it should not be tagged with terms and conditions.

The Advertising Standards Authority of Singapore should investigate these retailers and take them to task if they fail to adhere to the Consumer Protection (Fair Trading) Act.

Michel Stravens

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on February 14, 2020, with the headline 'Beware misleading ad practice by retailers'. Print Edition | Subscribe