Ottawa's Carlingwood Shopping Centre was busier than normal Thursday as bargain hunters descended on the mall's Sears store for a liquidation sale, but the crowds didn't necessarily translate into huge sales.

The Canadian retailer started its highly anticipated liquidation sale with promises of "Everything must go" and "Nothing held back."

Seasr liquidation shoppers

Judy Peck, left, drove to Carlingwood Mall from Shawville, Que. expecting better sales. She and her friend Marilyn Knight said they're very disappointed by the lack of true discounts. (Giacomo Panico/CBC)

But not long after the doors opened and the waiting crowd of roughly 100 shoppers entered the store, many of them left empty-handed and underwhelmed.

"I bought nothing. I left it all at the cash," said Brenda Saad. "It's not worth it. I think for a store that's closing in January, the sales should be a lot better."

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Albino Salvani left Sears without buying anything. (Giacomo Panico/CBC)

"No good," said Albino Salvati, who also left without making any purchases. "Forty per cent last week, now it's twenty per cent. Does that make sense?" 

Judy Peck drove more than an hour from Shawville, QC, specifically for the Sears liquidation sale but she too felt the discounts offered didn't live up to expectations.

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Brenda Saad came expecting sales but also didn't buy anything. (Giacomo Panico/CBC)

"I'm disgusted. It's not worth it," said Peck. "It's cheaper at Wal-Mart, regular price, than what it is here." 

Sears shoppers on Thursday also expressed concern for Sears staff.

"It's sad for the employees. It's kind of somber in there," said Dan Pershick.

Pershick did manage to snag a chalkboard for his kitchen, at twenty per cent off the regular price.