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eBay: The Missing Manual by Nancy Conner

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Bid to Win

eBay newbies often complain that it's hard to win the auctions they bid on. Sometimes there's too much competition. Sometimes another bidder wins by just a couple of cents. Other times, a bidder thinks she's winning, then someone outbids her during the last minute of the auction, with no time left for a response. This section shows you the bidding strategies that will help you win more auctions.

How to Win by Two Cents

After you've bid in a few auctions, or even if you're just looking around the site, you've probably noticed that some auctions have bids in odd amounts like $14.53 or $267.32. Bids like this are the work of bidders who've learned to use bid increments to their advantage. The bid increment is how much a bid must increase over the current price to register as a bid. For example, if the current price is $14.00 and you try to bid $14.01, eBay won't accept your bid, because it's not a full increment above the current price; you'd have to bid $14.50 or more.

Bid increments are determined by eBay and the current price of the item, as you can see in Table 3-1. As the price of the item passes certain threshold amounts, the bid increment increases.

Table 3-1. Bid Increments: As the Price Goes Up, So Does the Minimum Bid

Current Price

Bid Increment

$0.01–$0.99

$0.05

$1.00–$4.99

$0.25

$5.00–$24.99

$0.50

$25.00–$25.99

$1.00

$100.00–$249.99

$2.50

$250.00–$499.99

$5.00

$500.00–$999.99

$10.00

$1,000.00–$2,499.99

$25.00

$2,500.00–$4,999.99

$50.00

$5,000.00 or over

$100.00

So how can you beat out ...

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