4 Ways to Maximize Profits for Your Live Auction
Getting the most out of your auction
Live auctions are a great experience for sellers and buyers alike and can bring a seller great prices for equipment and machinery that they are selling. However, it can be hard to know how to get the most out of your auction. Afterall, you want to maximize your profits but how exactly do you go about doing that? Isn’t it up to what the bidders are willing to pay? Somewhat – but you can have a larger impact on bidding than you think! We’ve come up with four helpful tips that you can use to bring you higher bids during your live auction.
1. Pick a professional auctioneer (like us!)
The very first thing that you will want to do is to find a professional auctioneer to work with. While you might want to be the one on the podium yourself or have a friend or family member calling, you really should invest in a professional auctioneer. A professional auctioneer will be key for you to get the greatest returns on your assets. For starters, an auctioneer will have key insights to help you plan your auction. Their knowledge will help you decide what items you have are worth selling, determine starting bids and help with the cataloging process. They do this every day for a living and are fully aware of what it takes to conduct a live auction – allowing you to sit back and trust their expertise to bring you the highest bids. During the auction, they will be able to act as a sort of host or MC of the event. They will read the crowd to keep people engaged and bidding, bantering with bidders to draw in more bids. They know how to pull attention to your items and will do all that they can to bring you the highest final bid possible. Plus, you don’t have to worry about them getting stage fright right before the auction is about to start!
Additionally, most auctioneers and auction houses have marketing plans to help sellers working with them (we will get into this later). But best of all, most professional auction companies have a loyal following of bidders that follow any sale that the company happens to be working. This brings a wide range of bidders to your auction, and we all know that more bidders lead to more bidding which results in a higher final bid!
2. Present Your Items Well
Once you have decided exactly what you plan on selling in your auction, you will want to make sure to do everything you can to present your items to bidders in the best way possible. For starters, you want to make sure that everything you are selling is clean. Industrial machinery and agricultural equipment get put to hard work, which means that they can get dirty over time. A surefire way to increase the bidding price from the start is to give equipment a good cleaning. If a bidder is presented with dirty equipment, they will have to look through all the dust and dirt to determine their value of the item. The debris will probably hinder them from properly valuating your equipment, resulting in lower bids. However, if they are presented with newly cleaned equipment, they will be able to clearly see the value and will be prepared to offer higher bids.
An added bonus to cleaning your items is that it will help them photograph better. You will want to take pictures of all of your items from every angle for the auction catalog that will be used by bidders during the event. These images will likely be put online as well – either as part of your marketing tactics or simply on an auction site for bidders to inspect before the auction takes place. Adding descriptions to each lot alongside the photos will also provide potential bidders with more information that will make them feel more comfortable bidding on an item. And if more people are bidding, the higher your final bid will be!
3. Promote your auction
While many auction houses will have their own means of marketing your auction that doesn’t mean that you can’t do your part to get the word out! Reshare any promotional materials that your auction company puts out about your auction on your social media platforms. Create a Facebook event for people to RSVP to. Post your auction catalog and other photos to your page, highlighting big items that will draw people in. If you are a company auctioning off your items, check in with your marketing department to see if there is room in their budget to run a few ads on Facebook or elsewhere. A company can also promote an auction to their email list, sending out a newsletter with the information for the auction. If you can (and it makes sense for your auction) hang flyers around town or take out a listing in a local paper. Encourage friends and family members to get the word out as well if they are willing! You want as many people to hear about your auction as possible, because the more people who know about the auction, the more people who will likely bid.
4. Plan out the event
So, you’ve gotten to the big day! All your items are spick and span, tons of people have seen your posts and you are ready to start the auction. Before you are overcome with the fun of the auction, make sure that you have a solid plan for your event. Get together with your auctioneer to make sure you know when you can expect people to arrive for beginning inspections, what time everyone will have to be ready to start bidding, and the order in which the items will be sold. This is extremely important, as certain items should be sold at different times to bring in the largest bids possible. When there is order and clarity to an event, bidders (and you!) will feel more at ease and will be more likely bid higher. This step not only allows you to have a more peaceful auction yourself, but helps you bring in the highest bids possible!
And there you have it – four tips to increase your profits at your live auction. We wish you the best of luck! If you are looking for a professional auction company to help with your auction, contact us today! We would love to talk to you and learn about your auction needs.