Monday, November 05, 2012

Playing Ebay to my advantage

Those readers who wander over to my Flickr album will have probably picked up that I recently acquired a new camera body and that the old one is up for sale on Ebay. You can find it by searching for Canon 5D MkII body – mine is obviously the only one offered from Bigastro, Spain.

I’ve sold a few items on Ebay in the past and I think I have learnt how to play the auction game to my advantage.

First off, if you are prepared to sell to Europe rather than just the UK, then you attract a wider audience. Although there is a local Ebay site in Spain and I dare say in other European countries, the UK site is much larger and therefore attracts a lot more buyers.

Secondly,  I always start at a low price to encourage early bidders and don’t set a reserve price because that puts these people off. I don’t know about you but whenever I look at items on Ebay, I always look at the ones with the highest number of bids first – they are the ones that have generated the most interest and I am curious as to know why.

My auction started on Saturday and within a few hours had attracted hopeful bidders who must have thought they were going to get the bargain of their lives – a full frame Canon camera body for under £200.

Yesterday the price rose steadily by £20 per bid until one of the more serious bidders came in with £500 followed not long afterwards by someone else with £600. The highest bid (the 37th) now stands at £620.

They are way off the mark of what I hope the camera will achieve but at least we are moving in the right direction. There are still five days to go and the really serious bidders will probably be waiting until the closing hours in the hope that they snipe a bargain knowing that bidding too early on an item only pushes the price up. 

In the end it is a game which both parties hope to win at - buyers want to get an item cheap and sellers want to make as much as they can for their items on sale. 

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