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Old 07-16-2015, 11:35 PM   #21
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My experience with eBay is that many bidders don't submit a max bid, they bid whatever is needed to make them the highest bidder. They may be willing to bid $100 if needed but will only submit a bid for $10 if that's what it takes to get them to the top. If my max is $100 and I wait and submit my bid at the very last second I might get it for $12 since they won't have time to submit a higher bid. If I submit my max bid early it might cause the other bidder to drive up the bid to $100. Obviously it rarely works out that good but I found I got better results by using one of the snipe programs.

How many times do you win something that is worth $100 for $12ish.... I would say never... now, I do not get on ebay much, so I could be way off here.... but when I was looking at stuff on there the prices were pretty close to being the same for the same item... IOW, the best you might get is $90 for a $100 item....


But, you seem to be on there more than me.... so I could be completely wrong..,
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Old 07-17-2015, 07:55 AM   #22
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I've never really given much thought to different bidding strategies.

The proxy bidder, the sniper and the nibbler. Kind of sounds like a nursery rhyme . I've been more the nibbler but now like the proxy strategy (just have in mind what I'm will to pay, place my bid, then walk away).

If you are gonna snipe snipe snipe, here's something I found on the do's and don'ts:

Quote:
Sniping on eBay is a controversial subject that probably shouldn't be so controversial.

Many new-to-eBay shoppers feel as though they've somehow been cheated when bids appear at the very last moment of an auction. Many regular snipers suggest that anyone that doesn't regularly snipe is at best a fool, or at worst driving up prices for everyone on eBay. Both groups often attribute whatever they don't like about sniping outcomes to supposed rampant shill bidding on eBay.

Some of the confusion in both camps stems from a misunderstanding of the automatic way that eBay bidding works in the first place and the complicated cost-benefit analysis related to sniping.
Dos and Don'ts for 'Sniping' on eBay
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Old 07-17-2015, 08:57 AM   #23
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I've never really given much thought to different bidding strategies.

The proxy bidder, the sniper and the nibbler. Kind of sounds like a nursery rhyme . I've been more the nibbler but now like the proxy strategy (just have in mind what I'm will to pay, place my bid, then walk away).

If you are gonna snipe snipe snipe, here's something I found on the do's and don'ts:



Dos and Don'ts for 'Sniping' on eBay

Yep, reading that article confirms what I was thinking.... there really is not a regular advantage from sniping... maybe an item or two that is not in demand.... but as a way to snag deals.... just not there....

And I think I will believe eBay more than the snipers.... they have more data points.....
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Old 07-17-2015, 09:17 AM   #24
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Yep, reading that article confirms what I was thinking.... there really is not a regular advantage from sniping...
Uh, the article says: "It's true that in some cases sniping an auction rather than bidding on it outright can reduce the price at which it ultimately closes"

Obviously not in all cases, but on some obscure items, or plentiful items, it can reduce the end price at least somewhat.

I'm a regular snipe user. I would never consider bidding on an eBay auction without sniping. That's just dumb. There's absolutely no upside to bidding early. All you're doing is signalling your intentions to other potentially interested bidders.

I've found myself bidding on items before where I said, "My max price for this is $30. No more." I'd bid and be on top at $24. Then 2 minutes before the end of the auction, someone else would bid it up to $32. And I've caught myself saying, "Well... OK, I guess I'd pay $35." So I'd bid. And win it. But I could have saved $5 if I hadn't telegraphed my intentions so early.

I use a service called BidNip. Snipes only cost $0.25/ea. and you don't pay unless you win the auction. Sniping is just the way of the world regarding online auctions. There's no good reason to bid early, and potential benefits to sniping. So why wouldn't you snipe?
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Old 07-17-2015, 09:44 AM   #25
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Sniping is just the way of the world regarding online auctions. There's no good reason to bid early, and potential benefits to sniping. So why wouldn't you snipe?
In my experience the benefits are real.

I've played an on-line game for a few years with an auction functionality (fantasy football, buy & sell players for your team).

Due to the psychology it turns out (again, my experience) that the best prices are had when you bid in small, standard increments at the last minute within an auction.

In addition, don't bid up immediately after someone else has bid up (call it "reaction bidding"). If you display "slow and steady" behavior the most competitors seem to give up. I guess it destroys some of the random fun in the bidding process.

Worst bidding prices I've seen conversely were for items that get bid up in large steps early in the process.

This of course next to choosing the right time of day, availability of other similar items etc ..
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Old 07-17-2015, 10:19 AM   #26
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In my experience the benefits are real.

I've played an on-line game for a few years with an auction functionality (fantasy football, buy & sell players for your team).

Due to the psychology it turns out (again, my experience) that the best prices are had when you bid in small, standard increments at the last minute within an auction.

In addition, don't bid up immediately after someone else has bid up (call it "reaction bidding"). If you display "slow and steady" behavior the most competitors seem to give up. I guess it destroys some of the random fun in the bidding process.

Worst bidding prices I've seen conversely were for items that get bid up in large steps early in the process.

This of course next to choosing the right time of day, availability of other similar items etc ..

A fantasy game has zero correlation with bidding on eBay...

First, there is a limited number of bidders
Second, everybody has to 'win' to get a full team...

and probably many other reasons I cannot think of right now...
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Old 07-17-2015, 10:23 AM   #27
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And I think I will believe eBay more than the snipers.... they have more data points.....
And I will believe my financial advisor the next time he tries to sell me an annuity or his own special mutual fund. He has more experience than I do and the fact that he makes more money that way has no effect on the advice he's giving me.
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Old 07-17-2015, 10:26 AM   #28
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Uh, the article says: "It's true that in some cases sniping an auction rather than bidding on it outright can reduce the price at which it ultimately closes"

Obviously not in all cases, but on some obscure items, or plentiful items, it can reduce the end price at least somewhat.

I'm a regular snipe user. I would never consider bidding on an eBay auction without sniping. That's just dumb. There's absolutely no upside to bidding early. All you're doing is signalling your intentions to other potentially interested bidders.

I've found myself bidding on items before where I said, "My max price for this is $30. No more." I'd bid and be on top at $24. Then 2 minutes before the end of the auction, someone else would bid it up to $32. And I've caught myself saying, "Well... OK, I guess I'd pay $35." So I'd bid. And win it. But I could have saved $5 if I hadn't telegraphed my intentions so early.

I use a service called BidNip. Snipes only cost $0.25/ea. and you don't pay unless you win the auction. Sniping is just the way of the world regarding online auctions. There's no good reason to bid early, and potential benefits to sniping. So why wouldn't you snipe?
And how do you KNOW that the person who bid $32 did not have a max bid of $32 You do not.. There is NO way you know if you would have won with a bid of $24 on that item...

I did say REGULAR advantage.... probably a bad word... but sure, I bet that you might have won an item at a cheaper price by sniping... but you do not know for sure... and that is the whole point.... you do not know... you just think you do... eBay is looking at every auction and can tell if there is an inherent advantage or not... and they say not.... who should I trust, you or them?

How many times have you sniped and not won the item?


BTW, I do not get on eBay that much... but I have won items with bids I put in day earlier...
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Old 07-17-2015, 10:53 AM   #29
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In my experience, sniping nets the lowest price since it counters the competitive-bidding element found in all auctions.
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Old 07-17-2015, 11:14 AM   #30
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I can see sniping working in an ideal situation. That is, where most of the other bidders are nibblers who manually try to enter bids at the end of the auction. But I don't see any advantage sniping has over those who proxy bid and set a max. Plus, if you snipe and go against others that snipe, then wouldn't there still be a bidding war? This will happen near the auction close instead of through out the auction.

Now, in auctions with an auctioneer where the person uses the going once, twice, three times things, I've seen where the auctioneer places down the hammer, then still takes last second bids and the other bidders get ticked .
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Old 07-17-2015, 11:22 AM   #31
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Plus, if you snipe and go against others that snipe, then wouldn't there still be a bidding war?
Time expires before much of a bidding war can develop.
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Old 07-17-2015, 11:39 AM   #32
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Time expires before much of a bidding war can develop.
I see that about time expiring.

But, take my example (why I started the thread anyhow, but bidding amounts changed to protect my bid ), I'm bidding on a mechanical keyboard that I'm willing to pay $75 for. So, I put in my proxy bid of $75 max. Right now, I'm in the lead at $35 with 5 hours to go.

If you snipe, you still need to have a max in mind. I see how you might catch folks who nibble off guard in the end, but ultimately, it's your max vs my max, plus all the other proxy and snipe bidders too. I don't see the real advantage, unless you just happen to go up against those who don't proxy bid.
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Old 07-17-2015, 11:53 AM   #33
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I see that about time expiring.

But, take my example (why I started the thread anyhow, but bidding amounts changed to protect my bid ), I'm bidding on a mechanical keyboard that I'm willing to pay $75 for. So, I put in my proxy bid of $75 max. Right now, I'm in the lead at $35 with 5 hours to go.

If you snipe, you still need to have a max in mind. I see how you might catch folks who nibble off guard in the end, but ultimately, it's your max vs my max, plus all the other proxy and snipe bidders too. I don't see the real advantage, unless you just happen to go up against those who don't proxy bid.
I think the idea is mainly one of how your "max bid" can actually changed based on altered perceptions. You mention you're in the lead at $35 on an item you consider to be worth $75. But what if you hadn't bid at all yet, and the item was still sitting at it's opening bid of $1 (or whatever)? Maybe I see that same item, and I think it's worth $40. In the sniping scenario, you set up a snipe at your max bid ($75) and I set one at mine ($40). 5 seconds before the auction ends, both of our bids go in, and you get the item for $41.

But you've tipped your hand. By putting your bid in early, I see that the item is worth at least $35, or pretty close to what I thought was my max bid. So I submit my $40 bid, and now see you're still in the lead at $41.

Now I'm curious - am I really so far off on the value of this item? Maybe it really is worth more than I thought. I do some Googling, some research, check other auctions to make sure I'm not just being bid up, and discover that my initial valuation of $40 is unreasonably low. I discover that these items routinely go for $75-$80. Now my "max" has changed.

I now realize I'm never going to get one of these items for $40, so I need to be more reasonable with my expectations. So I submit another bid for $75. As it happens, this was also your max bid, so you're still in the lead. However, I have no way of knowing that that was your max. For all I know, if I bid $80, $85, or $100, maybe you'll still be in the lead. Or maybe your max was $99 and I'll get it for $100, and have overpaid. But at $75, you're still winning, so I give up and look elsewhere. Time eventually expires and you get the item for $75.

Now, if you'd used a sniping program, the bid would have sat at $1, and I might not have realized that my own valuation of $40 was unreasonably low. I'd have set up a snipe at $40, you'd have set yours at $75, and you would have won the item for $41. But instead you got it for $75, because you gave me time to think about it, and your bid prompted me to reconsider my own expectations.


If sniping programs didn't generate an advantage, nobody would use them.
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Old 07-17-2015, 12:49 PM   #34
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I can see sniping working in an ideal situation. That is, where most of the other bidders are nibblers who manually try to enter bids at the end of the auction. But I don't see any advantage sniping has over those who proxy bid and set a max. Plus, if you snipe and go against others that snipe, then wouldn't there still be a bidding war? This will happen near the auction close instead of through out the auction.

Now, in auctions with an auctioneer where the person uses the going once, twice, three times things, I've seen where the auctioneer places down the hammer, then still takes last second bids and the other bidders get ticked .

On your second sentence.... that is against the law here (I was told that by an auctioneer).... if the auctioneer says 'sold', he cannot take any more bids....

The place I have been a few times.... the guy is real good at reading the bidders.... he can usually tell if someone is out or just thinking about it... and he will cajole you to make that last bid... if he can tell you are out, he closes it right away....
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Old 07-17-2015, 12:51 PM   #35
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I think the idea is mainly one of how your "max bid" can actually changed based on altered perceptions. You mention you're in the lead at $35 on an item you consider to be worth $75. But what if you hadn't bid at all yet, and the item was still sitting at it's opening bid of $1 (or whatever)? Maybe I see that same item, and I think it's worth $40. In the sniping scenario, you set up a snipe at your max bid ($75) and I set one at mine ($40). 5 seconds before the auction ends, both of our bids go in, and you get the item for $41.

But you've tipped your hand. By putting your bid in early, I see that the item is worth at least $35, or pretty close to what I thought was my max bid. So I submit my $40 bid, and now see you're still in the lead at $41.

Now I'm curious - am I really so far off on the value of this item? Maybe it really is worth more than I thought. I do some Googling, some research, check other auctions to make sure I'm not just being bid up, and discover that my initial valuation of $40 is unreasonably low. I discover that these items routinely go for $75-$80. Now my "max" has changed.

I now realize I'm never going to get one of these items for $40, so I need to be more reasonable with my expectations. So I submit another bid for $75. As it happens, this was also your max bid, so you're still in the lead. However, I have no way of knowing that that was your max. For all I know, if I bid $80, $85, or $100, maybe you'll still be in the lead. Or maybe your max was $99 and I'll get it for $100, and have overpaid. But at $75, you're still winning, so I give up and look elsewhere. Time eventually expires and you get the item for $75.

Now, if you'd used a sniping program, the bid would have sat at $1, and I might not have realized that my own valuation of $40 was unreasonably low. I'd have set up a snipe at $40, you'd have set yours at $75, and you would have won the item for $41. But instead you got it for $75, because you gave me time to think about it, and your bid prompted me to reconsider my own expectations.


If sniping programs didn't generate an advantage, nobody would use them.
Thanks for a detailed example. I do see that as for the price, there is no real benefit to bid early and how that might influence the end price. Better to keep the bids until near the end. However, I tend to bid early to make sure I don't forget to bid.

About "If sniping programs didn't generate an advantage, nobody would use them.", I'm not sure about that conclusion. Think market timing programs for getting an advantage in the stock market. Why are they still around?
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Old 07-17-2015, 02:13 PM   #36
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On your second sentence.... that is against the law here (I was told that by an auctioneer).... if the auctioneer says 'sold', he cannot take any more bids....

The place I have been a few times.... the guy is real good at reading the bidders.... he can usually tell if someone is out or just thinking about it... and he will cajole you to make that last bid... if he can tell you are out, he closes it right away....
The live auctions I've been to weren't fancy places. There'd be times he's go, going once, going twice, going...(pause for several seconds) then ask if the person was bidding or not awfully close to when he put down the hammer.
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Old 07-17-2015, 02:25 PM   #37
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Was thinking of flipping or renting out a local house - it had been one owner since the mid 50's, then vacant for the last 3~ years. Great bones, unmolested. It had been listed at $120 with a real estate agent for the last several months with no action. Auction.com put it up with a starting bid of $25k, winner pays 5%. I watched the bidding go to 119,500. With buyer's premium that meant an out of pocket price of $125,475. I get auction fever too, but mostly that just means I max out at a low fair price. If I used a sniper program it would be rare for me to buy anything, because I am so darn cheap my max bid would be peanuts.
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Old 07-17-2015, 10:04 PM   #38
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Well, the auction I was bidding on ended. I was leading into the final minute but think my bid got sniped. The winning bidder went $5 over my bid.

He got a great bargain on a used Unicomp (IBM Model M type) mechanical keyboard for $74. But I really don't mind as my cutoff was $69.
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Old 07-18-2015, 09:19 AM   #39
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Ok. I looked at the bid log of the bid I did not win. Looks like there was no sniping, but just that someone had an automatic bid higher than me. After I folded, another person bidded higher but then the winner placed a manual bid to get suckered win on the auction.

I do see how sniping can win against the nibblers who fall behind then go ahead and try to bid more in the final moments but the clock runs out.
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Old 07-18-2015, 12:38 PM   #40
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Unless it's a buyitnow I always use an eBay bidding snipe program to make my bids. It's a program that waits until the last few seconds to submit your bid for you. Just decide at the beginning the max I'm willing to pay and ignore it until it ends. If I find a better deal or get a change of heart before the bidding ends it's easy enough to cancel my bid on the snipe program.

After doing some more reading, like the old Monkees song, "I'm a Believer".

Next time I go ebay shopping, I'm gonna use a snipe tool.
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