Tips To Bid On eBay
Have you ever wondered how to be successful and bag a bargain on eBay? There’s not much that’s worse than adding your bids and getting excited just to miss out in the final few minutes. These disappointments come with the territory but what makes it worse, is that there are so many people who can claim eBay bidding success. They seem to win all the auctions they take part in and get what they wanted at a very good price. Are you tired of missing out? Here are a few useful tips that could help put you on your own winning eBay bidding streak.
1. Take Advantage Of The ‘Best Offer’
There are many features bidders can use on eBay and one that works well is the ‘Best Offers’ feature. It allows bidders to make the best offer to a seller even when the auction is underway. The buyer can accept it or reject it, but sometimes, they might make a counter-offer. The best thing about using this feature is that you don’t have to wait for the bidding to end if the seller is looking to sell quickly or has more than one item. The point is, this feature lets you cut out the auction and can save you money.
2. Research The Item
On eBay, many different sellers offer similar or identical items so you don’t have to go for the first one you find and to give you an idea of what price to expect, it is helpful to check out previous sales. You’ll be better informed on what is the price benchmark and therefore likely to be a successful offer. In some instances, items offered are no cheaper than they would be offered for sale anywhere else. It often pays to look around on and offline for a thorough price and product comparison.
3. Research The Seller
Before placing a bid, besides researching the item, it’s useful to know more about the seller by reading their feedback. Don’t just put your trust in a high overall rating, but check how the seller has been doing lately. If their most recent reviews tend to lean more towards the negative, you may want to try finding another. It’s also sensible to avoid bidding on an item where the seller continuously extends the auction deadline. In fact, if there’s anything your gut is telling you is right about this seller, you are better off avoiding them altogether.
4. Avoid Low-Ball Bidding
Low-ball bidding opens with low maximum bids sometimes on several items as one lot. Buyers take part hoping to end up with quality items for less. It looks tempting, but on the whole, it’s time wasted. In a marketplace as humongous as eBay, there’s always someone watching your bids and ready to outbid you, rendering your low-ball bid utterly pointless.
Some bid in several auctions for items that are similar to the hope of winning at least one. However, it is perfectly possible to win more than one. Since bidding forms a legally-binding contract, you can not legally withdraw your low ball bid or not pay the seller to attempt to cancel the sale.
Experienced sellers are quick to notice low-ball bidding and respond by blocking or canceling bids. They might even decide to report attempts to manipulate their auction to eBay as ‘malicious’ behavior and it becomes impossible for that buyer to place any bids at all. Therefore, to fully benefit from eBay now and in the future, it’s important to steer clear of low ball bidding activities.
5. Avoid Bidding Too High
Just like bidding too low, bidding too high, especially too early in the auction, won’t work in your favor. Doing so is a signal to the seller that you desperately need the item and they could decide to hold on to it longer and push the price higher.
It’s best to place a bid late in the auction although an even better option is ‘bid nibbling’. This involves placing incrementally higher bids. This way you see how others respond to your bidding to get a good idea of how to change yours to win.
To increase your chances of winning an auction on eBay, these tips usually help, but here are a few additional ways to be more successful.
- A great idea is to place bids with odd figures. This works because most bidders prefer even numbers but placing odd bids such as $103.01 or $10.97 can give you the edge.
- Don’t be drawn into a bidding war. You’ll be on the losing end especially if the item is not that rare. On eBay you can always find exact or similar items offered by another seller.
- Look for the item as being re-listed by putting a ‘watch’ on it. You can find this handy feature on your dashboard. It helps especially if an item was initially offered with a high opening bid and there was little or even no interest. The seller will have to list it again with a lower opening bid and with the notifications set, you can be quick off the mark to take advantage of it.
If you are new to how eBay works or don’t use it very often, it could be helpful to know you become better at reading the bidding the more you use it. To some degree, it takes confidence, holding your nerve and a level of skill, just as winning an auction does in the real world. There may be some initial disappointments, but on a busy buying and selling platform such as eBay, there will always be new and better offers.