1. Please take 30 seconds to register your free account to remove most ads, post topics, make friends, earn reward points at our store, and more!  
    TalkBass.com has been uniting the low end since 1998.  Join us! :)

Im an Ebay newb - TB mates please advise

Discussion in 'Off Topic [BG]' started by Peter Squire, Aug 6, 2005.

  1. Hi people

    Today, for the very first time, I placed a bid on an Ebay auction. There are a couple of very very rare CD's on there that I have to have. I really have no idea what I'm doing with Ebay though. :meh:

    I can't send the seller a question because I have no feedback (?)

    I am wondering this - if I don't want to be outbid, should I place my maximum bid at 1 million dollars???

    Really, folks, I'm just looking for some advice about how to successfully deal on Ebay.

  2. Never ever place you maximum bid higher than you are willing to pay, and never place your highest bid early in the auction, as it will likely just drive the price up. Wait until (seriously) the final 15-20 minutes before placing your absolute maximum bid, and then watch that auction like a hawk.
  3. Bob Clayton

    Bob Clayton Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

    Aug 14, 2001
    Philly Suburbs
    i alwasy wait until about 15 seconds left to place my max bid
  4. Oh, ok, can everyone else see what your max bid is?? Or can the seller email his mates to get the bids higher etc?
  5. the seller nor anyone else can't see what the max bid is.. but there are people that will keep bidding just to see how high someone may have gone (I've done that withing reason,, humph, never got a thanks from the seller either LOL)

    and no,, the seller can't get his buds to drive the bids up,, (although I'm sure some do it),, it's against the rules,,,,

    if you do a search on google, you can find some ebay auction sniping sites,, that will,, umm,,something like a proxy bid,, will bid at the available few seconds to secure you a winning bid,,, ebay does not condone this behaviour, but they are hard to catch and a number people use them,,,

    good luck with your bids..
  6. Bob Clayton

    Bob Clayton Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

    Aug 14, 2001
    Philly Suburbs

    the max bid is for you. say your max bid is $25.00 and i bid $15.00, it will automatically raise your bid to the next increment. it may be a 20 cent increment so a bid for $15.20 will automatically be placed for your favor. this process contunies until someone bids over $25.00. but at that point you can make another bid if you like.

    and yes, technically, a seller can do that. which is why i wait until the last possible second to but a high max bid in.
  7. Steve


    Aug 10, 2001
  8. burk48237

    burk48237 Supporting Member

    Nov 22, 2004
    Oak Park, MI
    One other suggestion, decide at the beginning what your "max price" is and stick to it. I know lots of people that have "won" but lost. Like Kenny Rogers "my hero" says, "You got to know when to fold em". :D
  9. 'JC'


    Mar 14, 2000

    I just made an ebay post too.

    Anyway as others mentioned, snipe your bid, or manually bid when there's less than 10 seconds left.

    I keep two browser windows open.

    One for my planned "snipe" at T - 0:10, and if I get the "You have been outbid" page, I have enough time to ALT+TAB to the other window and hit Enter on my backup high bid if it's something I absoutely must have.

    Obviously broadband is a must.

    Also since you are a self proclaimed newb:

    You may want to avoid Private ID/auctions.

    Try to stay with PayPal payment methods, avoid Western Union and BidPay if possible.

    If you must leave negative feedback do it at the zero hour (you have 90 days) to try and keep from getting retalitory feedback.

    Good luck!
  10. I hate to tell you guys this, but, sniping is pointless.

    eBay is not a "Going, Going Gone" scenario. It doesn't matter if you bid in the 1st ten seconds or the last ten seconds of an auction. The high bidder wins. Snipers only win the auction by making the high bid, not by making the last bid.

    So.... bid what you want to pay. If you feel the item is worth $25.00 then make that your bid. Don't be a doofus and bid way more than what you want to pay, just because someone outbid you in the last 5 min. of an auction. :rolleyes:

    But do use the logic that experienced eBayers use, bid in odd amounts like $25.53 that way you will beat the people who bid in the more common amounts like $25.00 or $25.50. :cool:

    Sevices like esnipe charge a fee to bid at the last second for you, when eBay will bid at the last second for you, with a proxy bid, for free, if your max bid is high enough. You will always win an auction with the high bid whether you let eBay do it for you for free, or you pay a service to do the same thing.

    Now, as as seller on eBay, I love to see the price go up, and I don't care about the pointless silliness of someone trying to snipe an auction. As long as my stuff sells, I'm happy.

    However, as a buyer I have won items that I feel I paid too much for, by entering bids at the last minute to "get" the item :rollno: , and felt like an a** afterwards for paying too much for something!

    As far as having someone run up the price for you, that"s "called "shill bidding" and strictly against eBay rules, and illegal in some areas. But it does happen, though rarely. :smug:

    No don't bid a million dollars to make sure you win the auction, because if someone else has the same idea, the 1st person to bid the high amount wins, at that amount. So you just bought something, via a legally binding contract, for a million dollars. On high dollar items eBayers have successfully sued for payment.

    I have never seen it happen for a million, but have seen people buy something for hundreds of dollars that was only worth a few bucks, using that strategy.

    Yes you can ask the buyer a question even though you have zero feedback, if you have a question that's what the feature is there for. The buyer may have placed a restriction against zero feedback buyers on his auctions though (stupid). Try again. :)


    BTW...... I Just got my 120th positive feedback as a seller :hyper:
  11. BassManJim got it right; his advice to you is very good. And there's no reason you can't ask the seller a question, doesn't make any difference whether or not you have any feedback. If you have questions ALWAYS ask before you bid!!! :hyper:

    Good luck! EBay can be lots of fun if you handle it responsibly. :D
  12. tuBass


    Dec 14, 2002
    Mesquite, Texas
    the last two posts are completly wrong about sniping. IT's a proven technique to SAVE MONEY. THat's why sellers hate it, they know it costs them big time.

    It has nothing to do with just winning the item, it's about getting it for a lower cost.

    Every ebay seller would ban sniping if they could, every ebay buyer is a fool if they don't use it. THere must be millions of fools out there, because I still see people bidding a dozen times on the smae item. Just learn the system, and you can get some real bargains out there.
  13. Dude, go read the discussion boards on ebay regarding sniping. Most sellers love snipers for the same reason I do.

    I love snipers, because of the way they drive up prices :)

    In an ebay auction each bidder needs only to bid once, and ebay's proxy bid system will raise the price to the high bid. The bid that shows on the auction page is not necessarily the high bidders highest bid!

    Let me give you a scenario:

    "A" bids on the first day and bids $51.50 and is shown as the opening bid of, say, $9.99 (or whatever the seller started it at)

    "B" waits a few days and bids $55.00, he is now the high bidder at $52.00 (assuming bid increments of $.50)

    "A" decides that he wants the item at no more than $100.00 so he bids at $100.52. He now has the high bid at $52.50

    So..... the auction sits for a few days (nobody wants to raise the price), with a few people having the item on their watch list........

    Then in the last 5 seconds or so of the auction people try to snipe. Unless they bid more than "A"s $100.52 the only thing that they do is raise the price nearer to the high bid of $100.52.

    If they entered a bid of more than $100.52, (which would be a winning bid) they could have done it anytime during the auction, using ebay's proxy bidding, and won the item. (easy isn't it) By "sniping" they just raised the price!

    One more time. eBay auctions are won by the highest bidder, not the last bidder.

    It's really funny to watch a "war" between two snipers in the last seconds of an auction, and they both get beat by $.50 by a proxy bidder who bid on the 1st day. :cool:

  14. tuBass


    Dec 14, 2002
    Mesquite, Texas
    Dude, you must be in some kind of fantasy world. let me explain how it works in the real world, and I'll talk slow so you understand.

    The vast majority of people on ebay don't bid the maximum $ they are willing to bid if they bid early in an auction. (why do you think ebay sends out "You've been outbid" notices?)

    If I bid on an item early enough top allow them them to then top my bid, they will. If I don't give them a chance, like bidding in the last 2 secons of an auction, I win, and for less money than I would have if they had another chance to top my bid.

    The trick is for me to bid the most I am willing to pay for the item with my last bid. No time to go back and create other bid if the snipe was not successful. If I don't win the item, it was more than I was willing to pay in the first place, so no regrets. It's true that I've just raised the price of them item for the seller, but not as much if I had bid with one day left, and the original bidder (or bidders) had a chance to bid again.

    I've won almost every item I've sniped on, and every auction I've bid early on has inflated beyond the point I was willing to get the item. I never bid twice on an item, because that just encourages a bidding war.
  15. tuBass


    Dec 14, 2002
    Mesquite, Texas
    By the way, I'd like you to find me an example of that. I've never seen it happen. The first day bid with 99% of the time be a smal opening bid, and the remaining bidders will just leep bidding until they top the first bid. If the original bidder doesn't top those bids, he didn't want it bad in the first place.

    Sniping is at it's best when you find an item that only has one bid at closing time. the first bid is usually a minimum, so smiping that poor fool is easy as stealing candy from a baby.
    Here's some good articles for you:




    have fun reading
  16. Selta


    Feb 6, 2002
    Pacific Northwet
    Total fanboi of: Fractal Audio, AudiKinesis Cabs, Dingwall basses
    I always just put down my max bid when I decide I want something. If I get beat by someone else's eBay proxy, or "sniping" then whatever, they went higher than I wanted to in the first place.
    I've always found sniping to be pointless... from both a buying and a selling perspective. But, that's me. Go ahead and bid in the last 2 seconds before it's over, what do I care? I either already bid my max, or am just watching the price of my auction go up... it's no skin off my back either way.

  17. tuBass


    Dec 14, 2002
    Mesquite, Texas
    That puts you in a very small minority, but it is the way ebay was designed to work. See item number one in the moyen link I posted
  18. tplyons


    Apr 6, 2003
    Madison, NJ
    I bid manually, what I want to pay, and if that gets outbid, I bid my max and let the proxy bidding do it's share.

    On the other hand, I have used sniping when I'm going to be away at the auctions close. It's really a cut-throat place.
  19. Nor would you have any positive evidence of it unless you were a seller. Then you can see the bid amounts and when they were placed. The seller cannot, however, see the winners max bid, only the winning bid.

    True, and there's nothing wrong with not paying more than you want to pay for something. BTW there are many buyers on eBay who do nothing except place low opening bids, knowing that the odds will catch up and they will win a few items at the opening price.

    ......and if you do that, you have raised the price by at least one bid increment (thank you!)

    ok so you posted links to three sites, two of which have links in the text to fee based sniping services (could this be advertising? and possibly one sided information?)

    The moyen page is opinion based on experience. I can't help but notice that the author frequently mentions that the highest bid wins an auction no matter when it was placed. :meh: However he has some good points: like do your research before you bid, and never bid (sniping or otherwise) more than what you think is a fair price for an item.

  20. tuBass


    Dec 14, 2002
    Mesquite, Texas
    Everybody can see bididng history after an item ends, not just the seller. YOu don't have what the winners max was, but everything else is there for the whole world to see. Go ahead, try to find an example like you're talking about.

    If everybody used the proxy system the way it's supposed to work, sniping would not exist. Because people low ball bids and bid again only in response to somebody else topping them, that is why sniping works, and it keeps costs down. There is almost always somebody willing to pay more that me for the item I am looking at, the trick is to not give them the chance.