1. How does Penny Bid Index work?
First you must sign up and create a user name. Then go to the Bid Mart and purchase a Bid Pack of your choice. Once your purchase process is complete, you can then use your bids and start bidding in the auction! Bids cost just $0.60 and can be purchased in Bid Packs at the Bid Mart or on the Cent Spot. These bids are pre-paid and stored in the Credit History section of My Penny Bid Index. Each time you place a bid, it will be deducted from your remaining bids, and will increase the price of the auction by 1 cent.
No more than 20 seconds is added to the timer whenever a bid is placed. This allows another user the opportunity to bid if interested. It is just like the auctioneer shouting "Going once... Going twice... SOLD!" at a traditional auction. You win by being the last to bid. Once you pay the final auction price, the shipping costs is free, and the item is yours!
Here is the part that is not like a traditional auction: if you do not win, you cannot reclaim the bids you place. BUT, because we never want anyone to walk away with nothing, we offer a Buy Now feature on auctions! When you use our "Buy Now" feature, we subtract the cash value of the bids you have placed (excluding bid saver bids) from the value price of the item, and you pay the difference.
It is just like buying the item at retail price! So at least you had a chance at getting it at a discount. Say you spend 30 bids trying to win a $30 valued product, but you do not win. Your 30 bids are worth $18 (30 x $0.60), so if you choose to use the Buy Now, you will pay $12 for the product. Please note that this offer applies to Real Bids only; Bid Savers do not apply with the Buy Now option.
2. Do people really buy things for well below retail price on your site?
Yes up to a 95% off savings. I know it's hard to believe; you will have to go to our site and see for yourself. One of our customers won a $25.00 forever 21 gift card for 45 cents and a Apple Ipad Air with WIFI for $16.97 cents. A Mobi Cam digital monitoring system went for $3.33, and there is so much more! These hot items are flying off the shelves, and you still have time to get your items shipped to you before Christmas!
3. How can sellers afford to sell things for low prices on your site?
Every day Penny Bid Index sells products at 60-90% below their retail price. We are able to auction products cheaply for the same reason you are able to purchase them...cheaply. It is because of the unique auction model that’s built into the core of Penny Bid Index business.
In a traditional auction, people bid, driving the price higher and higher, until only one person is left, right? Well, also in a traditional auction, the item often sells for a price that is usually pretty close to the actual market value.
However, the Penny Bid Index auction model ensures that almost every auction will end with the winner paying far below the retail value of the product. We are able to accommodate this by charging .60 cents to place a bid.
For example, Penny Bid Index auctions a product that costs $159.00 when ordered from a traditional ecommerce site, but it recently sold in a Penny Bid Index auction for only $3.35. Let's break out the old calculator:
Penny Bid Index purchases the product for $159.00. We turn around and set it on the auction block and bids begin to be placed by users who are competing for a chance to win. Eventually, the bidding ends at the price of $3.35. Because each bid raised the price by $0.01, there were a total of 335 bids placed during the course of the auction.
335 bids x $.60 bid = $201.00
Cost for Penny Bid Index to purchase the product = $159.00
Cost for the auction winner to Purchase the product = $3.35
In this auction, Penny Bid Index made just enough to cover the cost of the product, and thus, the lucky auction winner claimed an incredible product for 98% off the retail price. Plus whatever they spent on bids. But what about the users who don't win?
In order to make our auction model as fair as possible, Penny Bid Index offers each participating user the chance to redeem what they spent bidding toward the "Buy Now" feature. "Buy Now" applies the value of all the bids placed in that auction toward the cost of purchasing the product. The user pays the remainder of what it costs Penny Bid Index to purchase the second item. No bid is ever wasted on Penny Bid Index!
4. Are there some bidding strategies which tend to be successful for buyers on your site?
This is a question we routinely hear. Honestly, there is NO guaranteed strategy to win; however, we will share some common tips:
15 Second and under rule: If you begin bidding in the last few seconds, the time will reset, and you will become the highest bidder. When someone else bids, time is added to the clock and you'll get another chance to bid.
Select lower priced items: The expensive auctions tend to be more popular. They generate the more competitive bidders on the site. Fewer people bid on the smaller auctions, which mean your chances to succeed are greater.
The Penny Pilot: Let the Penny Pilot assist you when bidding. It is a very useful instrument that will increase your odds of winning. Its true effect will deter other bidders.
Turn your opponents' Penny Pilots against each other: Customers set their Penny Pilot and walk away. When they do this, it is easy to capitalize on this. We have noticed that users tend to set the "Bid From" value of their Penny Pilot to a round number, so use this to your advantage. Wait for a round number and place a single bid after it on the off-chance that the Penny Pilot has reached its limit.
Watch other bidders: View the details of the last ten bids placed and try to figure out: Who is bidding? and When do they place their bids?.
5. What advice do you have for shoppers who are interested in your site, but have never used a bidding site before and are hesitant to give it a try?
1. Watch several auctions before you play.
Don't get caught up in the excitement. Instead, figure out what's going on so you can approach each auction strategically.
2. When you're ready to play, start by bidding on low value items.
Winning expensive items (TVs, iPads, iPods, etc) takes skill and patience, so you get your feet wet with smaller auctions first (low value gift cards, etc). For your beginner auctions, look at the end prices of past auctions to figure out the best times of day and most logical items to bid on.
3. Only play on a websites with a Buy it Now option.
This means that even if you don't win the auction, you can apply the value of bids toward purchasing the item at retail price. Look for good beginner sites like Penny Bid Index, since we offer a Buy it Now option and some other great features that make bidding risk-free.