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Old December 26th, 2004, 11:50 AM   #1
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Bidding on ebay

Are people stupid or is really bidding on ebay a waste of time?

Yesterday I lost a bidding on two Omni lights that OK, was sold for a bit more than $300.

But there's people bidding on two Tota lights, just the heads, for $265. A Tota kit, with two heads, tripods and umbrellas is costing $324 at B&H, new!!!

Is there something I am missing? A bidding should stop once the amount gets to 2/3 of its new price, why do people pay more for something they didn't even try?

Can someone explain that to me?


Carlos
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Old December 26th, 2004, 12:47 PM   #2
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That's the stange thing about bidding on E-Bay. Sometimes the bidding just spirals out of control. Other times items sell at a fair price. I have sold most of my vintage Nikon 35mm camera equipment on E-bay and was very supprised when a couple of lenses recently sold for 150% of what I paid for them.

Regards,

Mark
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Old December 29th, 2004, 12:29 PM   #3
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When I bid on eBay, I really hate it when other people outbid me and it makes me want the item more. Logically though, I'd want the item less since it's more expensive now.

In real world situations, you can gain good information based on what other people do. Most people use this mental shortcut (i.e. when I do something new, I have a strong tendency to try to imitate other people). On eBay this mental shortcut works against me.

To avoid this, I use an automatic bidding program called Biet-O-Matic. It takes some time to setup and I have misconfigured it once (didn't set it on automatic mode) so it didn't bid. You can also try esnipe.com, which costs 1% of your bid.

That is why people start eBay auctions at 99 cents... just to generate bidding wars.

Quote:
is really bidding on ebay a waste of time?
In my opinion no. There's a wide spread in auction prices and some auctions just don't pick up much interest for one reason or other, so they end on really low prices. Setup a bid sniping program and let it do the bidding for you. It takes a little patience though, and self-control not checking prices. Set your maximum bid before bidding and leave it alone. Avoid looking at the bids on the item afterwards (that information has little bearing on what your maximum bid should be).
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Old January 6th, 2005, 01:55 AM   #4
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ebay has always had people who bid way too close or even OVER the street price on stuff but it certainly seems to have gotten worse.

i find myself always having the bh website open on a different screen and i double check everytime before i bid...

matthew
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Old January 7th, 2005, 01:32 AM   #5
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Well, to put a happy ending to this thread, I must say I could just get to buy some stuff from ebay at less than street price.

It was two quality light heads which apparently are new. Let's see what happens when we get them, as that is the second step: see if the other part fulfills what was said about the product.

The advice you gave, automatic bidding and setting a bid limit, was the way to do it. And it worked!

So it's really a question of patience and finding products others may not want so badly.

Thanks to all!


Carllos
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Old January 20th, 2005, 06:50 AM   #6
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The other day i lost an auction on ebay for a 16x9 Century Optics lens for the PD150 and the LCD Widescreen Magnifier. In this country, that comes to about 800 new, and everything appeared to be perfect condition apart from the sunshade was missing from the magnifier.

Just one slight problem, the seller was based in Germany, and the listing was all in German. I used babelfish (http://world.altavista.com) to translate his description, and emailed him a question (basically "do you speak english? is it ok to bid from within the uk?") in both english and german (again, babelfished!) and got no response. The auction started at 150 Euros (about $200) and with just over 1 minute to go, had zero bids. His feedback was ok, 7 positives no negatives.. luckily previous items included some cam gear that went for close to 1000 Euros, so I wasn't worried about scamming. I had to bid! A small frenzy opened, and the price went to around 180 GBP. Still a massive bargain, there was 20secs left, and I knew bidding would be futile as for the sake of 1 Euro difference, the German guy would never sell it to me over someone who spoke German, and lived in Germany. I'd had no response from his email, and didn't hit the bid. A German bidder got the lens for under 200... it almost killed me! I'm on a pretty basic wage, so adding things to my camera is often only cheap filters etc, so to see a piece of kit I desperately wanted go for so cheap.... I'm staying off eBay for a while, it hurts too much!

Then on the flipside, I see glidecam auctions get 10 bids when there's still 4 days left. Some people are just crazy.. why get into a bidding war days before you can even win it? Pushing up the auction is not clever bidding! I wait till the last minute, hit my "nearly highest" bid in, and go for it. Then depending on my network speed, i'll shoot in my top bid as close to 0 secs left as I possibly can. That way, it ensures I don't get into wars and end up paying more than I ever want to for goods. Alas, most of the time I'm restricted by bank balance, rather than the price I'd be willing to pay!
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Old January 20th, 2005, 03:25 PM   #7
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I've found the best time to bid is during the Christmas season. Everybody's broke and you get a chance to buy the gear people are selling to raise money to buy presents. If you're a patient person, it's not a bad idea to save up your money until December and then go crazy on eBay.
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Old January 21st, 2005, 12:11 PM   #8
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<<<-- Originally posted by Marco Leavitt : I've found the best time to bid is during the Christmas season. Everybody's broke and you get a chance to buy the gear people are selling to raise money to buy presents. If you're a patient person, it's not a bad idea to save up your money until December and then go crazy on eBay. -->>>


You seem to be right, at least judging from my recent experience. It was just during/after Christmas that I could get my Ianiro light heads. Which BTW are already at the place I had them sent to.

As this was my first time in Ebay, I was afraid something might happen, like things not being delivered.

Carlos
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