Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Tuesday's Ebay Selling Tip: Make Buy it Now Your Friend

I don't know about you, but when I want something, I don't want to wait for it.

When I shop online, and I do a lot of shopping online, I don't want to have to wait 1-7 days before I see if I can purchase something (at an unknown price I might add!).

Sure, auctions are GREAT.  So fun.  I LOVE to watch an auction, especially when the price goes up and up!  There are tons of great people out there who live to get swept up in the possibility of getting something for a steal...people who love any competition or any chance to "win" no matter what the cost. Auction style listings work great for items you KNOW will sell and have a completed listing history of a consistent ending price.

But don't forget people like me who aren't competitive, hate to wait to buy something, and don't get into the whole "maybe I'll get it for a steal" mentality.

Consider putting a fair start price (see more on that here) and adding a buy it now price.  

Make your buy it now price at the top end of what you have seen your item sell for, or undercut everyone else's buy it now price by a dollar to get yours to sell first.  Or make your buy it now price your "Happy Price".

If nothing else, a buy it now price often encourages would-be buyers to place a bid early on to make the buy it now price disappear.  This will get the bidding started and create a sense of urgency for some buyers.  The earlier your auction gets a bid, the higher it will usually go.

Would I recommend you putting a buy it now price on something super rare, super fun or super unknown?  Probably not.  But for your average item you list with a selling ceiling, appeal to those buyers who hate to wait!


  1. This is good advice. I just ended my first week of auctions, and I'm starting to get more comfortable using buy it now. In fact, an item I just listed at 10:30 last night was sold when I woke up this morning. The buy it now price was my "happy price", and I really don't think the item would have gone that high in auction. :)

    Also, last week I had someone ask if I would consider adding a buy it now price on one of my auctions. I did, and someone else scooped it up before she could. Again, it was my "happy price", so I was thrilled!

  2. What a great post. I just started using BIN this summer and have been super happy with it. I'm also considering using just BIN next summer during the slow period.

  3. Have you ever had a bidder retract their bid because they bid on 3 other "like" items and won the other auction?(not mine) I am so annoyed because my blue bumbo seat was at $20 and she just asked to be removed. Now I'm back down to $15. I decided to block tweetytweetyjuliewilson from now on....oh well, I need to let it go.

  4. Well, I was about to come on and say that I had listed a few items as BIN, and nobody seemed to be biting, but then I checked my account and saw that I sold two today! I make custom photo invites that I list on ebay and the only way to do that is BIN; so far, so good :)

    @ feetinwater - not sure if you're a new ebay seller or not, but you'll find that the more things you list, the more times similar things will happen. I've had some REALLY strange issues/requests from/with buyers, and more often than not, try to remind myself that it would be the same if I owned a storefront. People can be inconsiderate on ebay, but don't let it get you down; another bidder will come around!

  5. Thanks Carrie. I was annoyed, but I let it go. I am new to selling, but so far we spent $10 and have made $45 this week, and bidding isn't over. Yeah!

  6. This is a useful post - I've considered doing this but was never sure it was a good idea. I just listed my monthly items (wide variety of stuff, not sure how that happened!), but I may try BIN next month.

  7. I tried listing more items as BIN on my last listing, and am very happy with the results!! Good tip!

  8. Okay, my question is: how do the FEES compare when you list auctino style with a BIN option, opposed to just listing auction style or just BIN style? How do closing fees compare, too? I always thought it was more expensive to list with more "features" (i.e. auction+BIN option)...opposed to just listing auction style--b/c heck, it's free until you list more than 50 items per month, right? (less the closing fees, of course).

    I am not new to listing, but I haven't listed in a long time, and I know eBay is constantly "improving" (HA!) their fees and such...so what's the best way to NOT spend a fortune to list? I do LOVE the BIN option...but it is costly! What are your tips???

  9. feetinwater - I didn't think you could "retract" a bid on ebay. I thought it was binding.

    I'm totally new to ebay selling, but found an adorable ralph lauren baby button up sweater the other day and listed it for auction. I saw a recent completed listing close at a great price, but mine closed at just over a dollar today! What's up with that? Is it a fluke? I'm so disappointed and would rather keep the sweater!

  10. Chesnut Family - That happens and a lot of it has to do with your status as a Top-Rated or Power seller. The more auctions you complete in a timely, reasonable way, the better your status will be, which will bump up your listings in the searches. I think there are a few other things as well, such as your listing title and category, but really, your status plays a huge roll overall.

  11. I just posted this on my blog, winetastebeerbudgetnashville.com, for all my mom's who do ALOT of consignment sales and ebay. Thanks for the advice!


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