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How to win a Ebay auction

Updated on October 5, 2011
You can buy almost anything on ebay,learn how to win a auction and buy items for hlf price or less.
You can buy almost anything on ebay,learn how to win a auction and buy items for hlf price or less. | Source

The purpose of this hub is to teach the reader how to win a ebay auction.

Ebay has 3 selling formats

Auctions - where the item is put up for auction and sells to the highest bidder.

Buy it Now - where the sellers sets his price and you can buy it for a set amount of money.

Make an offer - the seller has a set price but will consider taking less,you can offer an amount of money and if the sellers agrees to your offer,then you MUST buy the item at your offered price.

Before you do any bidding you need to do some research.

Find out how much the item costs retail and at other sites,for example lets say you are looking to buy a Gears of War 3 game for Xbox 360 gaming system.

Check the price at

  • Wal-Mart
  • Best Buy
  • Target
  • Buy
  • New Egg
  • Tiger direct

I can tell you that game cost $59.99 US dollars new at many electronic or video game stores.

Next you want to decide if you must have a new one or if a quality used one will work.

If an item isn't personal like a electric shaver or something like that I will usually try to get a used or a refurbished one,simply because they are high quality and less expensive.

My #1 goal is to spend the least amount of money to get the highest quality item.

Next check and see what the item is bringing on Ebay.

Search the completed items to see what they have been selling for on Ebay recently.

Using Ebay search features to narrow your search

you must be a Ebay member to use the completed items search feature,so log in and type in Gears of war 3 in the search,look on the left hand side of the screen and you can narrow your search by:

  • Price
  • Location - for example search item in USA only
  • Item format - Auction or Buy it Now

Next you need to set a budget or the maximum you will spend for the item, I will go back and use our example of Gears of war 3 for XBOX 360.

Gear of War 3 is a new game that just came out so it is in high demand on Ebay right now and we know that we can buy it now for $59.00 so just say you want to get it for $30.00.

FInd an auction where they have started the bidding anywhere below your budget,pull up the page and on the top right hand side of the Ebay auction listing they have a add to my watch list button,click it and add it to your watch list.

Try to find auctions that are endind in the next few minutes,and add around 5-6 of the item in your watch list and get ready to bid.

Before I buy anything on Ebay I always check the sellers feedback rating.

Go back through all the items in your watch list and make sure that the sellar has a good feedback rating,pull up the item and right beside the sellers name it has their feedback number if they have a feedback of 95% or better with several hundred transactions then you can buy from them and feel confident.

Many Ebay sellers also have a ME page which is a webpage that tells a little bt about the sellar and sometimes has their phone number where you can contact them,I may be OCD but if I buy something from soeone on Ebay and they have a ME page I usually read it and if a seller has given me a good deal,I will add them to my favorite sellers and buy from them again in the future because we have an established history.

The purpose of Ebay feedback

  • Feedback is left for buyers and sellers on Ebay
  • It cannot be manipulated or changed after it is left
  • It tells you the history of the person you are dealing with on Ebay
  • If they have several negative feedbacks - DO NOT BUY FROM THEM
  • If they have 100% feedback and over a hundred transactions,you can be certain they will do everything they can to make your transaction successfull.
  • If a seller does you right be sure and leave them a good feedback.

OK next decide how quickly you need the item.

Remember that if you don't have to get something quickly you will usually get the best price by buying the item as a auction on Ebay.

If you need to get a item quickly use the Buy it now format and see if you can find your item at the BIN price within your budget,many time you will be able to do just that.

Alot of Ebay sellers aren't trying to get rich,they will sell the items at good prices and use the buy it now format to make the sell quickly and also for customers who need items quickly.

Never bid on a auction until there is 20 seconds left

Pull up your watch list and select the next auction that is ending and go aheaad and type in your maximun you are willing to bid the bid bid amount section but DO NOT PLACE the bid until it gets to exactly 20 seconds left on the auction.

When you click the bid another small screen will pop-up for you to confirm you bid,click the confirm bid button and then let the remaining seconds run out.

You will either have won the auction for a good price or not.

Most sellers list their items for auction on a 7 day listing meaning it will be available for sale for 7 days,if you start bidding immediatly it will drive the price way up on the item and you won't be able to win the auction for your budget,especially if it is a HOT item like gears of war 3.

Lets go back to the example of gears of war 3 I used this technique to buy the game new - unopened for $24.00.

The bid was at $7.00 with 20 seconds left, I put in $30.00 and bid with exactly 20 seconds left and I won the auction $24.00. (this auction had free shipping,there was no charge for shipping)

More about Ebay sellers shipping charges

I have noticed a disturbing trend on Ebay many sellers are charging ridiculous amounts of money for shipping charges,make sure you check the shipping charges on any Item you buy.

Try to find free shipping auction listings,Ebay makes it easy for you to find the listings because they have a free shipping logo beside them.

Look for auctions starting at .99 cents and free shipping

I always search for any item I am trying buy to buy for .99 cents and free shipping because so many sellers use this as a way to get people to bid early on their items.

The secret to this is to add them to your watch list and to not bid until there is only 20 seconds left on the auction listing, I cannot stress this enough if you will do this it will save you a lot of money on items you buy on Ebay, in fact it can save you thousands of dollars over a period of time if you buy from Ebay on a regular basis.

In closing

I have been a member of Ebay for over 9 years and I have a feedback rating of 100% with 630 transactions as of today,I am not bragging but I do have a lot of experience with Ebay and at one period of my life it was my sole source of income, anyway I hope that this article will help you find quality items to buy at a good price,fi you will follow my instructions above I am certain that it will help you on Ebay.

I look forward to reading all your comments or questions in the form below.

As always God-Bless-Us-All

Click here to read my article: Make more money on Ebay part 1

Click here to read my article: Make more money on Ebay part 2


Submit a Comment
  • nicomp profile image

    nicomp really 

    7 years ago from Ohio, USA

    You can't win of you don't bid.

  • manthy profile imageAUTHOR


    7 years ago from Alabama,USA

    I wouldn't be surprised at all Sunshine - I have bought a lot of stuff over the years.

    Have a great day

  • Sunshine625 profile image

    Linda Bilyeu 

    7 years ago from Orlando, FL

    Hi Manthy! This is some great information! As an ebay trader for the past 13 years with close to 6,000 feedbacks i'm impressed with your tactics! I wonder if I might have sold you something at one time or another! :) #hubpagesrocks

  • manthy profile imageAUTHOR


    7 years ago from Alabama,USA

    @thelyricwriter - I hope it works good for you it has done very well for me. Do me a favor and keep me posted.

  • thelyricwriter profile image

    Richard Ricky Hale 

    7 years ago from West Virginia

    This is a great article, voted up. You really explained all of the Ebay business very well and easy to understand. I will use these techniques the next time I buy my coins so thanks. I look forward to more of this work Manthy. Best to you.

  • manthy profile imageAUTHOR


    7 years ago from Alabama,USA

    @TheOnlineBlogger - I love Ebay - I think it is the best way to shop if I could I would buy my groceries off Ebay and it also is a good way to make extra money,I am going to be writing a lot more about Ebay in the next month or so.

    Thanks for stopping by - I appreciate you.

    May I ask what do you blog about? I am a blogger as well aybe we can trade links

  • TheOnlineBlogger profile image


    7 years ago from Cairo, Egypt

    when my e-marketing professor told me about E-bay he used to describe how powerful and effective it is but honestly I did not try it myself till now. Your hub is very useful especially when you mentioned the 'seller rating' that is very important before buying anything.


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