Today we have a slightly different, and I hope very interesting post, all about eBay Snipers!
For those of you who have never come across the term before, what exactly are “snipers”? No, it’s nothing to do with war or police – snipers are tools that allow you to bid on eBay auctions at the very last possible moment.
And that’s actually where the term “sniping” comes from, when you steal an item with a last second bid.
The process is extremely simple, once you’ve registered an account with one of the many eBay snipers online all you have to do is enter the item number of the auction you’re interested in, set your maximum bid and the sniper will take care of the rest! It really couldn’t be easier.
“But why!?” I hear you asking… Isn’t is easier to just set your bid and leave it – after all that is the whole point of how auctions work on eBay?
Yes technically that is true but in practice there are some clear disadvantages to bidding for items in the conventional way:
1) If an auction has no bids you don’t want to be the first! Herd/sheep mentality is strong on eBay so an auction with no bids makes people think something is wrong. It’s best to leave it like that and swoop in at the last second when there’s no competition for the item.
2) Many people DO NOT set a maximum bid as you’d expect. Instead they bid a certain amount and see if they’re beaten, and then they might bid more. This sniping method doesn’t give them the chance to do so, meaning you win more auctions and at cheaper prices.
3) Bidding wars! Bidding wars are great when you’re selling an item, but not when you’re buying! Once again the sniping method removes this worry as there simply isn’t time for other bidders to react.
4) Human error – how many times have you added an item to your watchlist with the intention of bidding on it but then completely missed the end of the auction? And how annoying is it when you later check and see that the item went for peanuts, and you’ve now lost out on some easy profit…?
Or how many times have you set a max price and then bid more than that so you can win the item (the bidding war syndrome that I just mentioned). Sniping removes all of these human errors by automating the bidding process and that by itself would probably make it worthwhile for most people.
5) Shill biding. This is a much more specific benefit, and not something that I consider to be widespread on eBay, but snipers do also stop shill biding. This is when the seller (through another a friend’s account) bids on an item until they’re the high bid, therefore knowing what your max is, then retract those bids and then use yet another account to bid on the item again so that it reaches your maximum bid amount. With snipers they can’t do this of course, as your bid isn’t placed until seconds before the end of the auction.
So now that we’ve covered what eBay snipers are and the main benefits of using one, who exactly are they for?
Well the main groups that come to mind are:
- Anyone using my How to Become a Top-rated Seller in 30 Days method
- Anyone using my Used Goods Concept to get started on eBay
For either of the above, then eBay snipers are an invaluable tool! Of course this isn’t an all-inclusive list and anyone who buys items from eBay would benefit from using a sniper, for all the reasons that we’ve just discussed. [Read more…]