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eBay: The Missing Manual by Nancy Conner

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Chapter 2. Bidding, Paying, and Following Up

Most of the time, if you want to buy something on eBay, you can’t purchase it outright. Instead, you have to bid for it at auction. Bidding means that you vie with other potential buyers to offer the most for an item. If this system sounds like it’s designed to bleed money out of you, think again. Auctions can help you get screaming deals.

Note

The exception to the bidding rule is Buy It Now auctions, described on Section 1.4.3.

On the other hand, if you’re not savvy about bidding, you could wind up paying $40 for a $3 SpongeBob comic book. Or, worse, you could find yourself unable to purchase what you want at any price.

This chapter shows you how to bid on eBay auctions with confidence, giving you the lowdown on:

  • What feedback is, why it’s important, and how to use it to tell if a seller is trust-worthy—before you bid.

  • How eBay’s bidding process works.

  • How to place a bid.

  • How to pay for auctions you’ve won.

  • When and how to leave post-auction feedback.

  • How to avoid common buying problems.

Is This Seller Trustworthy? How to Read Feedback

When you’re trying to figure out whether a deal really is as good as it looks, studying the auction page (Section 1.2.3.5) is a great place to start. But smart buyers dig deeper—and eBay’s Feedback Forum lets you do just that. If the software that keeps auctions running 24/7 is eBay’s heart, feedback is its soul.

After all, why are zillions of sellers, scattered all over the globe, willing to hand over their jet skis ...

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