Bidding on ebay

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This is my first time on ebay. Saw a Stanley plane that looked good so decided to try it. What the heck. The only thing I don't understand is the sellers reserve. Why isn't that the starting bid? Seems like the bidder should know at least the min. starting point. Oh well will learn I suppose. Thanks.
--
Paul O.
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I sold a few items on ebay last year and I found that when I started with an opening bid that was my minimum price the the auctions were sluggish to poor in respeonse.
When I made my minimim price the reserve price and made the starting bid $1 there was much more interest and action.
Why? Beats me, but that's what happened. Anybody else have a different experience of some advice? I want to put a few more items on ebay soon, so some good advice would be appreciated.
Wylie Williams The Speaker and Stereo Store

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I have to agree with Wylie. If you start the auction at a relatively high price, not much bidding will take place. If you start it at $1, and set a reserve, you will see a lot more bidding. Granted, a lot of this has to do with psychology. Just as if you were to list a house for sale at a deeply discounted price, even less than what it's worth. Almost all buyers will still want to attempt to talk you down in price. Human nature I guess???                Mark
Wylie Williams wrote:

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I disagree. You probably get more early action, but the early people never end up buying it. Personally I ignore auctions with reserve prices because you frequently can't ever buy it because the reserve price is too high. I set a minimum bid that is the minimum I will sell for. I usually get much more, and have not been disappointed. Occasionally I don't get any bids until the last couple hours, but it usually works out.
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We've tried both ways, and after a couple hundred auctions it seemed to work better our way for us. To each his own, I guess. Mark
Toller wrote:

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Marketing is just strange and you go with what works. F'r example: some years ago I was selling floppy disk overruns for a guy at electronics flea markets. He got diskettes with labels and current market programs on them by the pickup load, all thrown in to large boxes. There might be five disk in a set but there would be dozens of sets in those boxes, some where. All disk were sold for one dollar. I would sort out sets and lay them on one end of the table and I would make a heaping pile on the other. I'ld sell a thousand dollars worth of disk from the pile and maybe a hundred dollars worth from where I sorted them out.
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wrote:

The cost of the auction to the seller is based in part on the opening bid. So sellers often set low opening bids both to attract bidders and reduce costs. The danger to the seller in that is the auction ending before the price has been bid up to expectations.
In order to protect the seller against the auction ending before a price reasonable to the seller is reached one sets a reserve amount. That's kept hidden to bidders, of course.
Auctions are not necessarily a true reflection of actual market value as an item may end at an artificially low amount due to lack of traffic or lack of interest. That may be a result of a poor choice of title that doesn't get picked up by the ebay search engine, or it may be a poor product description.
- - LRod
Master Woodbutcher and seasoned termite
Shamelessly whoring my website since 1999
http://www.woodbutcher.net
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On Sun, 25 Apr 2004 18:09:50 +0100, LRod

eBay now whacks you for a percentage of the reserve price up front. This cost is credited to the final value if the item sells, and lost if the item does not, or the auction is ended early.
I guess too many people were selling off-line to a high bidder that didn't meet a reserve. <G>
Barry
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The eBay rundown:
Reserve price is seller's "won't sell less than" price. Start the bidding at a low price because this is what attracts people to doing any bidding in the first place, set a reserve price for the minimum you will let the item go for, or as much as you want to sell it for. At the end of the auction if the reserve has not been met, then the seller is not* obligated to sell to the highest bidder. If it has been met, then by contract the seller is* obligated to sell.
If super quality pictures are give for show then people go crazy trying to win. Money comes.
During bidding it is also legal to steal the top bid within the last minute of the auction even if you've never placed a bid on the same before, at that time you can send in a bid that can't be topped and win, but pay that much. It is what eBay calls "automatic bidding". That price will remain until someone else outbids you, and if they under bid you it raises your bid price to anywhere under your top bid.
Lotsa fun!
One evil thing in bidding is that people bid time after time in order to win when it is not a race, all they're doing is raising the price. One only needs to, or even not to bid only once, then battle it out within the last minute.
As an example, I just won this bid for my mother in her own sign in, click on the link that says "21 bids" and you can see how it went: http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item287697291 Even though she pays $56.03, I put in her top bid of $65.00 within the last minute and it couldn't be beaten. You'll also notice my only two entries for her bids, other people did several each which is pointless.
In order to know what is going on toward the end of the auction you must, that is to say MUST keep on refreshing(MS IE) / reloading(NS) the page.
Good luck next time, Alex
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read if there is more than one bidder w/o the reserve being met this happens but not sure with only one bidder.
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Paul O.
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Only if they want to ... the new thing of a seller being able to do that while the sale remains under the contract might be in effect, I don't know. But, do some reading on eBay for buyers and sellers. I havn't read-up on it yet.
If they say yes or offer, and it is not* under the contract then that is where to be wary*, if you send your money off into the wild blue yonder, they could rip you off seriously.
Paypal offers theft insurance for it's buyers, I saw it costs .80 cents on one sale I paid for.

If so then only the top bidder, you'd have to ask the seller.
Alex
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AArDvarK wrote:

sellers have a "hidden reserve" and will abort a no reserve ebay auction if the bidding doesn't get up there.
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And Here is a perfect example of that, on this auction page click "0 bids" and see what the seller did because the bidding didn't go high enough: http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item810750596 It's allowed too. Just happened yesterday. But the rule is that the seller must* cancel every bid first before ending (just to point it out).
Alex
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I put in my maximum bid and then forget about it. If I win, I win. Other people think that if they put in low bids, then maybe they can get it for that price. When they are outbid, they put in a slightly higher bid, and so on. I can't image what is going on in their heads.

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That is what I do, also. However, I will wait until the last few minutes to do so. Why wait? Because there seem to be a bunch of people out there that think an auction is some kind of contest which you can win or lose. They are the ones (or some of the ones) who do the multiple rebidding. It's as if they can't accept "losing" and keep inching the bid up until they "win".
Does that make me a "sniper"? Perhaps. But I've learned that putting in a reasonable bid early in the bidding is an almost sure way to be outbid by one of the "nibblers".
Tom Veatch Wichita, KS USA
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thats the way i feel too. i choose my price not the other bidders. if i get outbid, so be it. ebays proxy system makes sure you only pay enough to beat the next highest bidder anyway. it doesnt matter if that bidder is bidding 10 days or 10 seconds before the end of the auction. if they dont beat my price, they dont get it. if they do, they can have it.
randy

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Paul O. wrote:

This practice seems ridiculous to me. When it occurs on something I want to bid on, I email the seller and ask what the reserve price is. If they won't say, I don't bid.
Mitch Berkson
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before you waste a lot of $ and time(and your mental health) on eBay get the book _Online Auctions @ eBay(3rd edition) by Dennis Prince( about $20)
Larry
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Lawrence L'Hote
Columbia, MO
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It really is no big deal for a seller to reveal if they want, especially if they only care about making the money. But another point is, some seller are moral*. And it is unfair to other bidders to reveal. Some sellers simply say what it is right there in the sales text.
Alex
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AArDvarK wrote:

Alex,
OK. It's an auction, not a guessing game. It's not an audition to become the next Amazing Kreskin and, well, the reserve will be revealed anyway when it's met.
Right?
Good.
I have in the past e-mailed a seller to ask what the reserve is and I've gotten the, "it wouldn't be fair to the others", argument as if by my knowing I'd have an advantage over the others?
Hello?
Is this thing on?
It's still an auction. Right?
Good.
Anyways (not a word) I've never understood the "moral" argument. Can anyone es'plain it to me? I mean, if I know what the reserve is and I bid past it, isn't that the whole point/what the seller is wanting me to do?
It's still an auction. Right?
Good, but I'm wondering, why not reveal the reserve?
UA100, who realized a long while ago that with eBay, and any auction for that matter, the only leverage worth a shit is a fat/fatter/fattest wallet...
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