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Offline Auction Bidding Tips For Ebay Sellers

Mar 12, 2008
Online auction selling is a fun and profitable business. However, the most fun and best thrills happen during the offline and onsite auctions. Nothing can compete with the sounds and sights that are seen and heard from the fast-talking auctioneer bidders and the incredible, visible merchandise.

It would probably surprise you to know how many Ebay sellers actually buy the things they sell at onsite auctions. If this sounds like something you may be interested in doing, follow these simple steps and you could be one of those Ebay auctioneers that make bank-busting money.

1. You will want to make sure that you are at the auction site early, this way you can check out the merchandise that is going to be sold and decide what it is that you want to bid on. You should make mental notes about who is looking at what and who seems interested in what you want to buy.

2. You should make a good effort to introduce yourself and talk to the auctioneer. Tell him what you are interested in, he may tell you what price they think it will go for or what price the owner wants to get out of it. Many auctioneers will start their own bid, this can make others think that they already have a bid but in reality they do not have anything.

The first bid you hear will be the auctioneer's bid. If it is obvious that the bid is the auctioneer's the auction can be stopped by no one bidding. Some auctioneers will actually end up with a truckload of things that they bought. Bidding just a quarter over the starting bid unless of course the minimum bid allowed is a dollar can also stop the auctioneer.

If the auctioneer thinks that the crowd is catching on, he may change his tactics. This change may be as simple as adding an extra dollar to the price of the final bid or adding another item in the mix. If no one ends up bidding on the items they will be tossed in with other things that did not sell and will be sold later. The bulk items that were not sold earlier will be sold together with one price and you may get a bunch of valuables for a cheap price.

3. Although you should be able to be comfortable at an on-site auction, you should never place yourself in the middle of the crowd. You will want to have a position where you will not be easily seen. You should bid very cautiously and never raise your hand above chest height. Use one or more fingers to tell the auctioneer what your bid is or use your card if you are using a number system.

If you want to bid half, raise your hand with your palm down. You could be outbid very quickly and most likely will be if you raise your hand any higher than your chest. Others will see that the item is valuable to you and they will outbid you to win. If you are not sure whether or not your bid was accepted all you have to do is point to yourself and the auctioneer will nod yes or no to let you know.

4. If the number system is used at an on-site auction you have to register and keep your number card where the auctioneer can see it at all times. After the auction you must hand in or destroy the card or it can be used fraudulently. Someone else can use it to charge items they get to your tab. Another way it could be used is at another auction to avoid from paying for items at least until a clerk or the auctioneer realizes what is going on.

You can use the back of your card as an inventory of the things you bought and what they cost. If you are not using the number system and do not have a card you should carry a notepad with you and keep track of everything you buy and what it costs. Some clerks can be dishonest and charge you more for an item or add another item to your load and have you pay more just so they can keep the extra.

6. Talk to the auctioneer, but you should be wary of annoying other customers. An auctioneer that is friendly can be worth a lot to you. You can also help the auctioneer by starting bids on the slower items, but you should know your starting and stopping points on objects your do not intend to purchase for yourself. This can influence others to bid on the slow objects.

7. You should keep an eye out for customers too willing to engage in "friendly conversation"; they could be bidding on things behind your back on the items that they know you want. You should also keep an eye out for anyone who thinks you may know all the good items, they will try to outbid you if they think what you want is worth their money.

You can get rid of these people by bidding over the price something is worth so the person will get stuck with paying way too much for something that was definitely not worth the cash. You also have to look out for those who will bid until they win the item up for auction. If there are too many of this kind of people you may as well leave right then and there.

8. You should be very cautious at all times; mistakes can be made extremely easy at an auction. If you are unsure about the price on an item or how much you are expected to pay you should take the time to go over your concerns with the clerk and make any corrections that need to be made.

If you follow these eight easy tips you are sure to find many valuable items that can be resold on Ebay for a small fortune.
About the Author
Kevin Sinclair is the publisher and editor of Be Successful News , a site that provides information and articles on how to succeed in your own home or small business.
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