Looking to find the best deals on eBay? Here are some tips for finding what you need when the other guy might be snoozing.
There are several advantages that sports collectors have when it comes to buying cheap on eBay. There are many different variables that contribute to the best time to find sports collectible bargains via the popular auction giant. The type of bidding, time of day an auction ends, and month in the year are all factors that come into play when it comes to finding a good deal on sports memorabilia.
Proxy Bidding versus “Sniping”
There are two popular methods of winning eBay auctions. Of course, the first is to put in a high proxy bid that you are comfortable with, and hope that no one else is willing to may more than you. The second is to “snipe” an auction by waiting until the last possible moment to make your bid. When you “snipe” an auction, you are hoping that in the case your bid is higher, competing bidders will not have the time nor be available to make another bid. You can try it manually or sign up for one of the many ‘sniping services’.
There are also certain days and times where it is to your advantage to place your bid.
Monday through Friday Between 8 am to 5 pm
Most people work a nine to five job during the week. Use that to your advantage by bidding on items that end in those hours, and in the minutes before an auction ends. As the other bidder will most likely be at work, more often than naught you will not have a counter bid to your offer so long as you bid more than anyone else.
Late at Night and Early in the Morning 2 am to 5 am
On the flip side to bidding on items that end during business hours are auctions that end really late at night or early in the morning. Because most people will be asleep so they can wake up for their jobs, it is an excellent time for you to sneak in a higher bid before the auction closes.
During the Off Season
Sports collectors have a special advantage when it comes to purchasing items off of eBay. That’s because sports have seasons, and aren’t always in fashion. For example during baseball’s off-season one might find rare Red Sox memorabilia at a lower price. Additionally, items may be listed at a lower reserve price because the person selling is in need of cash, and is finally willing to part with that autograph or old World Series program. Likewise, if your favorite team is in the middle of the playoffs or contending for a title, bidding on that same item may not be such a good idea since many other people who aren’t collectors will also be bidding as they ride the bandwagon. It’s true of any sport.
When Your Favorite Team or Player is Struggling
There is no better time to bid on sports memorabilia than when a popular team or athlete that normally enjoys success is having their worst season. No wins for them is a big win for you. Fans and some collectors love winners, and when a player or team falls out of grace, the competition isn’t as great. If you were sharp enough to buy Alex Rodriguez autographs and rookie cards during the off-season talk of steroids and lack of post-season performance, you’re feeling pretty good right now. The same goes for Kobe Bryant, who took his share of off the court heat a few years ago but is now hotter than ever.
Even if the team or player may not be your personal favorite, somewhere down the road the team will become popular again – and that is when you can make a killing by turning around and listing it during a great season for profit.