How To Attract Bidders – The Group Method

    October 21, 2003

“I need to get more people to view my auctions!”

Next to getting a bidder to bid, this is probably the most frustrating issue for sellers.

What a lot of sellers don’t realize is timing is everything. I have heard from sellers that when they have an auction that didn’t get any bids and they re-list the same auction at the same price just a week later they get lots of bidders, some even make more profit than they expected. So what’s the deal?

The `deal’ is that you never know when the people likely to bid on your auction are going to be looking at your auction.

So, here we are back at the beginning, how do we attract bidders? Well, one method that I have used to create traffic to both my website and my auctions is to participate in or create your own discussion group.

What are discussion groups you ask? Well, as the description for Yahoo Groups puts it, discussion groups “offer a convenient way to connect with others who share the same interests and ideas.”

There are three key ways to use groups to increase your auction traffic. The first two are 1) Join groups that let you post links to your auctions, or 2) Start your own group and invite others to post links to their auctions while you do the same.

The two methods above are a quick and easy way to get started on driving traffic to your auctions, however, the third and best way to utilize groups is to create a specialized group based around a theme, for example, collectors of die cast cars. This way people that are interested in your theme will be more interested in joining that kind of a group rather than a group that just lists various auction links. You can then set the rules so that members may post related auctions.

This last method focuses you audience and gets your auctions what is reffered to as `targeted traffic’, which is the best kind of traffic.

How do you get started? Glad you asked, shows you’re paying attention.

Discussion groups are free and both easy to join and easy to start. All you have to do to get started is go to one of the main discussion sites below and signup.

With Yahoo, if you already have a free account with them then you can just go to to Groups link from the main Yahoo page and start searching for groups to join. To start a new group, just click on the `Start A New Group’ link at the top of the Groups page.

Topica is just as easy to get started, just go to the main page and click on the `Sign Up Now’ link. The searching and signup are pretty much the same as Yahoo Groups.

Now that you have signed up, you can search for groups that may interest you, however, you need to beware that when you join a group that you read their rules, some groups only allow you to post relevent information and then some like the Yahoo group Auction_List allow you to post direct auction links. So, take note of the rules before you post.

Here are some of the auction related groups that already exist that you can join:

Auction_List Auctions_Plus Bargains_Galore cyber-auction Ebay_Listed ebaypowersellersecrets Hot_Buys

There are also plenty of collector specific groups. After a quick search for `coin’ related groups I netted over 400 like Ancient_Chinese_Coins, old_us_coins, southasia-coins, and stamps_coins_postcards.

Once you have gotten used to working with groups, you might decide to take the plunge and create your own. After you have done this, an easy way to grow your group is to add a link in your auction description, you can invite people to join your group; this doesn’t violate ebay’s link rules because you are not selling anything.

One last thing, discussion groups are not only an auction traffic builder, but they are also a knowledge builder. Seek out and join various auction groups, participate in them and you can come away with a lot of new information on how to build your auction business.

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Neil Bartlett is the publisher of The Auction Hot List
Newsletter and Companion Auction Site. He has been involved
in the online auction scene for over 5 years and in the
computer industry for more than 20 years. He developed the
Auction Hot List Newsletter and Companion Auction Site to
help both beginning and advanced auction sellers increase
their skills and profits.

Neil can be reached at:

The Auction Hot List Newsletter and Companion Site are
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