Live Online Auctions Without Auction Software – Impossible

As your live online auctions and auction business becomes more popular and grows, the one beautiful problem it will bring along is increase in traffic and transactions. Many a online auction businesses start out with manually managing the auction one at a time. For example, you might have used the comments section to monitor the auction. Or alternately, you might have had bidders call or e-mail you and updated the website accordingly.

Manual Auctions not Live Online AuctionsThe many problems with such a manual auction management system are self-evident as compared to Live Online Auctions:

A time-consuming process: It requires more than 100% of your time. If live online auctions is on, you have to be up and about to monitor any glitches or trouble-shooting it might require.

Lots of room for manual errors: After all that effort, a manual auction system is no where close to being perfect. Of course, no system is going to be 100% error-free but a manual system, that requires frequent and similar type of updates is bound to have a larger share of errors when compared to an automated system.

Looks and is amateurish: A manual system is bound to be look and be unprofessional. In this era of automation for even courier delivery, a manual system is primitive. You can’t blame a bidder for not taking you too seriously and gravitating towards the more automated systems of auction.

Less control to bidders: The move towards automated systems by users will also be a function of how much control users can have when they are logged into an automated system that allows them to keep track of their own actions and monitor auctions they are interested in.

Breaks down with higher volumes: A manual system is invariably going to crack under the pressure of higher volumes in both number of transactions and the bidding itself. The cost of losing business has to be pitted against the cost of auction software for live online auctions.

Little scope of adding features: These are times of more and more functions and features being offered to a site user. It is impossible to compete with feature rich auction software using manual systems of auction. These features become even more important when your auction is live. Using auction software for live online auctions is practically inevitable to move to an automated system for your own good.

This is not that bad because there are loads and loads of auction software options out there which are feature rich and have a whole load to offer.

The only reason for you to stay with the manual method is that either your volume is low or the frequency of your auctions is less. As soon as auctions become an ongoing activity versus being a once in a while event, you have to move to an automated system for your own good.

This is not that bad because there are loads and loads of auction software options out there which are feature rich and have a whole load to offer.

Why Is Auction Software A “Must Have” For Live Online Auctions?

Live Online Auctions

Once you have decided to take the plunge and buy an online auction software, you want to make a list of all the features that your auction site needs. This requires a deep study of all the features that such auction software packages offer.

Feature-Rich Options:

The live online auctions arena have never been as competitive. To stand out, you need to offer your bidders as many features as possible. And you have to do so without making their life complicated. From ease of use technically for you behind the scenes and for your bidders at the front end the latest online auction management software systems have it all. If the set-up you have is that which allows users to sell their goods too, you want that to be rich in features and easy to use too.

Some of the functions you are looking from the bidders’ point of view are proxy/absentee bidding, bid and bidder management, billing and invoicing, notification options to notify the bidder at each step,

For your own sanity, some of the options you want the auction software to include are inventory and shipping management. You also want options for offering variation in auction style like say, live auction or reverse auctions or sealed bid and silent auctions. You also want a reliable and many options for payment gateways.

In addition, if you have sellers, you want to make image editing available to them.

Technical support:

Given the competition, auction software package companies are trying to win customers by excellent technical support both in terms of product offering and after the sale for live online auctions. They cater to both customizations you might need for your particular kind of business/auctions and after sale hand-holding. Most of the good companies have technical staff that is both approachable and available.

Minimized learning curve:

Since these companies have been involved in creating this software for lots of clients, they know the ins and outs of what is needed. They have already made their mistakes and you are taking advantage of what they’ve learnt. Your job is restricted to just know how to use their program which they have to make as simple as possible for their own obvious benefit.

Advantages over Amazon/E-bay based Live Online Auctions:

Sure, having your software based on Amazon/E-bay or selling through them has its advantages in terms of exposure, but it has some serious disadvantages too.

Changes in their platforms: The algorithms that these companies use change over time as they are trying to improve their systems and adapt to competition. They are not obligated to inform API users about the changes. Even if they did, you would have to keep track and make changes in your software to keep it from becoming obsolete.

With your own live auction online software you are in better control.

Categorizing and listing glitches: These sites have known issues with categorizing and listing items. If your product isn’t categorized right, you aren’t going to be visible in searches. This leaves you high and dry with no fault of yours.

A customized auction software will keep you in charge. Also you can play around to see what gets you better results.

Profits get squeezed: Again due to increased competition and to thrive themselves these companies have no option but to squeeze more profit out of you or ask you to lower your prices. If you don’t do the latter, you might suffer in terms of your items showing up later in their search results.

Your trades might be lower but you can make up for volume by having that slight bump in your profit margin.

Once you have your software in place, it is absolutely imperative that you do your market research and analysis and deploy marketing methods to get the results that work best for your live online auctions. For you might have the best online auction software out there but you will not get anywhere if you don’t know how to get people on board.

Rest assured though, that setting up your own auction software is the first step in the right direction to run live online auctions. A true example of well begun, half done.

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