Yet another ebay question: Maybe I'm stupid, but for the life of me I
cannot figure out how I lost this auction.
Price began at 7.95.
I put a maximum bid of $9.00
A guy snipes me at the end, and he wins it for $9.10.
$9.10? If he had bid $9.50, I could understand it. But given the
dime difference, shouldn't I have won it?
No, because he still outbid you.
It's explained at
eBay's "bid increment" is only used when the difference between the two
highest bidders' "maximum bids" is more than the bid increment. If the
difference is less than the bid increment, they just take the highest of
the two bids.
That means someone can win a $500 auction by only 1 cent, if the
second-highest bidder doesn't see it in time to place another bid.
Stupid, yes, but that's just how eBay set up their system. Personally,
I think eBay should change it so that starting bids, reserve bids, and
maximum bids must be a multiple of the bid increment.
I'm guessing you placed the only bid on the item to that point, so it was
still at $7.95. If that was the case, as long as they set their proxy at
least $.01 higher than your proxy (not your current bid), they'll win it.
In fact, if they had set their proxy at only $8.95 instead of $9.10, you
would have actually outbid them by $.05. Conversely, if their proxy bid had
been $10.00, you would have been outbid by the full $.50.
This gets confusing, so I hope I can explain it satisfactorally.
When you place a bid, you must bid AT LEAST $.50 (or $1.00, depending) over
the CURRENT bid. If the other person's PROXY bid is set higher than your
bid, they will automatically outbid you. If your proxy is higher, however,
you will outbid them by either the difference between the proxies or $.50,
whichever is greater.
That's why, when I snipe, I always bid a few cents over the mark I'm
shooting for, like $9.10 or $25.06. If I correctly guess their proxy, I win
by a few cents.
I hope I explained it adequately, it's tough to put into words...
This is not a signature. Never was.
Well, were you the high bidder at $9.00 at any point?
I'd imagine that the bid before his hit was $8.60. Your bid of $9.00 was
not .50 over that, so his bid won. His bid must have come right before
Maybe I'm not understanding the situation that well. Take a look at the
bidding history of the item and it will show you exactly what happened.
The bright news: whatever it is, it'll be available on Ebay soon. Next
time bid $10 on it.
Yes, it's useful to end your max bid with unpredictable change. In fact,
what I do is figure out my max bid and then roll dice to generate a
random number between 1-50, and add that many cents, on the paranoid
off-chance someone is actually watching my bid patterns. That way, I
don't set a pattern, my end state cannot be predicted, and I am much
less likely to be outbid by a penny. I'm also likely to save a few
pennies if I barely outbid someone else, though I can't say that's much