The process for bidding online can vary from one auction website to the next. However, most auction platforms utilize the same bidding flow. Read on to learn the common steps for bidding in an online auction.
Register to Bid/Create an Account
Before bidding in your first online auction, you will need to register to bid with the online auction platform. During registration, you will provide your name, email address, and other contact information. Most sites also require you to provide your payment information. Collecting this information during registration helps simplify the auction experience.
View All Auctions
After creating an account, look through the auction company’s website to view their auctions. Typically, auctions will be split by category and/or pick-up location. Each listing should include the start and end dates of the auction, pick-up information, and a link to the bidding page. Clicking the link will take you to a list of all the individual items in the auction.
Place Bids on the Items You Want
Although options vary depending on the auction site you choose, you can typically place a one-time bid or a maximum bid. Bidders that place a one-time bid must manually enter bids as other people bid. Entering a maximum bid allows the system to bid on your behalf up until the amount entered. Bidding occurs in pre-determined increments. Bidders that enter a maximum bid will not need to pay the full amount entered unless bidding naturally reaches that amount.
Online auction platforms typically send emails and/or text messages when bidders get outbid. This provides a convenient option as it allows bidders to walk away from the auction.
Pay For the Items You Win
Once the online auction ends, you will need to pay for the item(s) you’ve won. If you entered payment information at registration, payment might be collected automatically after the auction ends. It’s important not to bid any amount you aren’t willing to pay. Once an auction ends, you will be required to pay for all items you’ve won.
Retrieve Your Items from the Auction Company
Make arrangements to pick-up your items within the load out times listed on the website. It’s a good idea to check these times and the location of the auction before you bid.
Ready to give it a try? You can register to bid here.