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This is why you snipe - Page 3

post #31 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by thinman
Another example of why you snipe:

http://offer.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.d...tem=7767480183

(and to avoid paying 87% of the PLAL retail price, after shipping. And the seller lists a retail price of $700, LOL).

I was planning a maximum bid about $80-100 under where these eventually sold, about 2/3 of retail....oh, well.

Could you explain this post to me?

Did you do the snipe, or are you criticizing someone who did? Wasn't the price already escalating well past your max well before bid end?

I honestly have no idea of what this means.
post #32 of 41
One reason to snipe (place your bid with seconds to go in the auction) is to act as if the item isn't really worth anything. If 4 people are bidding for a retail $500 item and I bid $300 9 days before closing, it gives the other bidders time to realize how much I value the item by having their own bids consistently unsuccessful until they hit my max. Bidding early gives other bidders time to think "wow this is a really hot item", and bid more than they might have otherwise.

Many people who have a high bid won't raise it until they get outbid, and won't be forced to assess just how much they're willing to pay for an item if there appears to be no demand.

That said, I typically place a bid for as much as I would be happy to pay and do not watch the end of the auction. If it goes for 10 bucks more than I bid, I don't freak out.
post #33 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by visionology
I try to figure out the logic of bidding. What is the point of even bidding days before an auction ends? Isn't it like showing your cards before the hand is over? It gives others time to think about your bid and place an appropriate bid in response. Wouldn't it make more sense to always wait for the final moment and strike once with a death blow to the neck?


That is exactly what I do.
post #34 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr. Checks
Could you explain this post to me?
Did you do the snipe, or are you criticizing someone who did? Wasn't the price already escalating well past your max well before bid end?
The auction ended at 11.18 h.

About ½ hour before closing, "5150frederic" placed a quite high bid. But he left "andrewhosking" enough time to nibble away in tiny steps and eventually outbid him. Had "5150frederic" placed his high bid in the last minute (preferably in the last 15 seconds) "andrewhosking" who would have been the highest bidder then, would not have known what hit him and he wouldn't have time to launch another, higher bid. "5150frederic" would have gotten the shoes at considerably less.

It's like poker, put your cards on the table in the very last moment. Sometimes you have auctions where three or four people wait in the wings to place their bid in the final moments of the auction. Do not give your rivals the chance to outbid you with an additional, higher bid.

And if someone else was willing to spent more than you, good luck to them. At least your bid has pushed the final price up.
post #35 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by bengal-stripe
The auction ended at 11.18 h.

About ½ hour before closing, "5150frederic" placed a quite high bid. But he left "andrewhosking" enough time to nibble away in tiny steps and eventually outbid him. Had "5150frederic" placed his high bid in the last minute (preferably in the last 15 seconds) "andrewhosking" who would have been the highest bidder then, would not have known what hit him and he wouldn't have time to launch another, higher bid. "5150frederic" would have gotten the shoes at considerably less.

It's like poker, put your cards on the table in the very last moment. Sometimes you have auctions where three or four people wait in the wings to place their bid in the final moments of the auction. Do not give your rivals the chance to outbid you with an additional, higher bid.

And if someone else was willing to spent more than you, good luck to them. At least your bid has pushed the final price up.

Got it. I forgot about how the second bidder doesn't know the max that the first bidder would have gone until he creeps up to it.

Thanks for explaining.
post #36 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by bengal-stripe
The auction ended at 11.18 h.

About ½ hour before closing, "5150frederic" placed a quite high bid. But he left "andrewhosking" enough time to nibble away in tiny steps and eventually outbid him. Had "5150frederic" placed his high bid in the last minute (preferably in the last 15 seconds) "andrewhosking" who would have been the highest bidder then, would not have known what hit him and he wouldn't have time to launch another, higher bid. "5150frederic" would have gotten the shoes at considerably less.

It's like poker, put your cards on the table in the very last moment. Sometimes you have auctions where three or four people wait in the wings to place their bid in the final moments of the auction. Do not give your rivals the chance to outbid you with an additional, higher bid.

And if someone else was willing to spent more than you, good luck to them. At least your bid has pushed the final price up.


And I thank you, too. Alternatively, "andrewhosking" could have waited in the wings and perhaps sniped the item for a considerably lower cost than he paid. Instead, he showed his hand early and may have cost himself some money by giving "5150frederic" the chance to bid again. Their silliness kept me out of the bidding, as I would rather order from PLAL for $313 plus $30 shipping than buy what may be a factory second on ebay for $260 plus $40 shipping.
post #37 of 41
It seems like the only reason sniping works is because people aren't putting their true valuation when making their bids. Ebay's auctions are sealed bid (ie you can't see others bids, unlike an English auction) 2nd price (i.e. the winner pays the next highest bid); the optimal strategy in theory is to bid your true valuation; the winner pays the highest loser's valuation (plus a penny). That being said, people shouldn't be constantly revising their bids if they're playing optimally.

Furthermore, I don't like the "high price means high desire" idea. Acting like the item isn't worth anything is weird for two reasons: there are others out there who will probably bid up the price regardless of your actions, and low price items are going to get more views and be more of a draw. My valuation of an item doesn't change based on its price - a pair of C&J's will be of the same value to me whether it is $50 or $250; I will be willing to pay up to that value (obviously I prefer a lower price, but the underlying good doesn't change value).

Anyway, I think bidding early can have value as it can create a barrier to new bidders. I feel like really cheap shoes will attract lots of people, generate bids initially, and then a few will get entrenched and drive up the price; if you bring the price up modestly early on, it can ward off people who would otherwise bid. I'm sure there's some econ papers about all of this. Interesting stuff.
post #38 of 41
Sniping also allows you to delay your committment to the very last minute (or second as the case may be). This is beneficial when there are multiple auctions of the same or similar items up for sale at the same time. Say there are three pairs of shoes up for sale and you want one pair. Assuming they are of the same value and desirability, which of the three auctions do you bid on? If you bid ahead of time, the other two auctions that you didn't bid on could go for lower prices and/or have lower interest. Sniping in this case would allow you to select which of the three has the least interest and potentially lower your acquisition cost.

The downside of sniping is that you have to be logged onto eBay right when the auction ends. There are third party vendors that will be your snipe agents but who wants to give their ebay password to someone else?

For those that want to learn more about sniping, I found the folllwing page to be very useful:

The SuperSniper - Step 1, Get yourself an atomic clock synchronization tool.

http://members.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI...id=supersniper
post #39 of 41
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Spencer Young
It seems like the only reason sniping works is because people aren't putting their true valuation when making their bids. Ebay's auctions are sealed bid (ie you can't see others bids, unlike an English auction) 2nd price (i.e. the winner pays the next highest bid); the optimal strategy in theory is to bid your true valuation; the winner pays the highest loser's valuation (plus a penny). That being said, people shouldn't be constantly revising their bids if they're playing optimally. Furthermore, I don't like the "high price means high desire" idea. Acting like the item isn't worth anything is weird for two reasons: there are others out there who will probably bid up the price regardless of your actions, and low price items are going to get more views and be more of a draw. My valuation of an item doesn't change based on its price - a pair of C&J's will be of the same value to me whether it is $50 or $250; I will be willing to pay up to that value (obviously I prefer a lower price, but the underlying good doesn't change value). Anyway, I think bidding early can have value as it can create a barrier to new bidders. I feel like really cheap shoes will attract lots of people, generate bids initially, and then a few will get entrenched and drive up the price; if you bring the price up modestly early on, it can ward off people who would otherwise bid. I'm sure there's some econ papers about all of this. Interesting stuff.
Of course, rationally, people should just bid once and it should not matter when you bid. But you forget one thing: information assymetry. For society as a whole the value of a thing is simply its market price, but for the individual the value of a thing is nebulous. Most of the time, when we lack a large amount of information on a subject we discount the price. But a large amount of bids informs the unsophisticated bidder. The large amount of bids reassures bidders that the value of something is worth it. Therefore by underinforming the unsophisticated bidder, sniping tends to lower the price.
post #40 of 41
One more example for everyone's amusement/disdain...a used suit going for over a grand:

http://offer.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.d...tem=7768246557
post #41 of 41
There's also something psychological about an item that has 0 bids. For some reason, people aren't as willing to bid on something until the first bid. It's as if you want some validation from at least one other person out there in cyber space that this item is worth something. I kind of feel that way myself when bidding on something. If nobody has bid on an item that seems really good I ask myself "is there a reason that nobody is bidding? Is there something wrong with this item that I'm missing?" So, in that way, sniping also lowers the final cost of an item because you aren't letting people know until the very end that the item is at least worth something.
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