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loginandtonic

Watchers Watching Items On Ebay

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i've noticed what some of the more experienced sellers (although i have been there for years) might know - the number of watchers you have does not directly relate to the price you'll get ...

i had 14 watchers for my old shaver - fair price on 5 bids but not as good as someone else who took much less care with his photos and got 15% more than me the next day on the same model

i had 12 watchers for a small bit of silver - only 1 bid - but its fairly rare and i only asked a fiver

i had 25 watchers for a kitchen appliance, the price achived was still mediocre, only 4 bid out of that 25

i had 2 watchers for a bit of breweriana, both bid and reasonable price obtained more than 3x opening bid price of £4

i had about 20 people watch for a bit of obsolete military equipt - only 1 bid

- the other day i posted here that people were bidding up an item to £25 from one seller that you could Buy It Now for £15 from another seller - so there seems no rhyme nor reason on eBay,

definitely in my experience the slump has returned to collectables on eBay after what had been a better August than usual.

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Having sold off some stuff on eBay over the past year I've encountered the same thing: More watchers than eventual bidders.

My theory is that some people watch stuff that they themselves are, or thinking about, selling just to see what the going rate is.

At least that's what I tell myself when an item doesn't sell as well as it appeared it would :rolleyes:

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I occasionally buy out-of-print books (mainly modern history and politics) and vinyl LPs (mainly jazz, classical and spoken word) on Fleabay. I've noticed the opposite: that several watchers tend to result in the price being bidded up, I presume by relative novices who don't have much idea of what a serious collector who knows the subject would be willing to pay.

As a result, and on the advice of a friend, my technique now with an item that I really want is to note its Ebay number and keep looking at the page periodically, so that I won't appear as a 'watcher' on the page as I keep an eye on it. Then, in the last 10 seconds of the auction, I put in a bid for what I am prepared to pay. I've managed to get several things for 99p plus postage that way, which would easily fetch £10-20 at collectors' fairs.

You occasionally get some naive sellers (usually those clearing out relatives' attics and who don't know what they're dealing with would be my guess) listing stuff with a starting bid of £50, that even a fanatical collector would never pay more than £2-3 for. Weirdly, some of these items actually sell.

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I sometimes watch auctions for things that i am wondering whether to sell or junk.

Other times I watch auctions for things i want to buy in the shops. I can give an example, Dunlop Green Flash. My favs at school and now back in fashion (well maybe last year). They come up on e-bay at £20 plus but I discovered them at JD Sports at £14.

Watchers watch for other reasons that interest in buying.

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I occasionally buy out-of-print books (mainly modern history and politics) and vinyl LPs (mainly jazz, classical and spoken word) on Fleabay. I've noticed the opposite: that several watchers tend to result in the price being bidded up, I presume by relative novices who don't have much idea of what a serious collector who knows the subject would be willing to pay.

As a result, and on the advice of a friend, my technique now with an item that I really want is to note its Ebay number and keep looking at the page periodically, so that I won't appear as a 'watcher' on the page as I keep an eye on it. Then, in the last 10 seconds of the auction, I put in a bid for what I am prepared to pay. I've managed to get several things for 99p plus postage that way, which would easily fetch £10-20 at collectors' fairs.

You occasionally get some naive sellers (usually those clearing out relatives' attics and who don't know what they're dealing with would be my guess) listing stuff with a starting bid of £50, that even a fanatical collector would never pay more than £2-3 for. Weirdly, some of these items actually sell.

but do watchers know other watchers are watching? no. so the only reason prices can rise so much if you watch something is if the seller is doing fake bids, right? what other explanation is there? i've never faked a bid ever, as a result some of my items have gone for money that barely pays for the jiffy bag. and then to add insult to injury, they dont even post any feedback. and now we cant post neg feedback for buyers so a larger number of buyers are taking the p!ss. they bid and dont bother to pay until it suits them - next day, next week, they can do as they please now. this is occurring more often than ever. when i do a BIN i set an instant payment requirement, but cant do that with auctions.

I sometimes watch auctions for things that i am wondering whether to sell or junk.

Other times I watch auctions for things i want to buy in the shops. I can give an example, Dunlop Green Flash. My favs at school and now back in fashion (well maybe last year). They come up on e-bay at £20 plus but I discovered them at JD Sports at £14.

Watchers watch for other reasons that interest in buying.

you cant always be sure - some things fail to find a buyer or sell cheap on eBay and at a conventional or collector auction they go for 10x more. dont ask me why. also, you get frenzied (or maybe fake) bid up items which sell for far more than you'd typically get when you try selling the same item. watch 10 of the same to get the ballpark figure, not just 1. the other reason you can get 25 watching is they all think the low price you're asking is attractive, once it goes anywhere near the norm they dont bid but they may still watch. thats my theory anyway

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I sell on ebay and have noticed that there does not seem to be many buyers at the moment, i cant believe how dead ebay is.

I have 5 items at 99p that have not even attracted a single bid, and probably will not.

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I have always watched items that are being sold just to see how much or even if they will sell. If buying somthing big I will watch for a few weeks before finally commiting. I even watch the odd BIN item I guess that must confuse sellers a little! However I would point out that the number of watchers usually does give you an indication of the final bid amount.

I also find that taking great photos increases the selling price by up to 20% in some cases. I mean real good photos using a lightbox with your account watermark which gives things more authenticity. Description and end time make huge differences too.

Obviously, always make sure your auctions end on a normal (not bank holiday or major event) Sunday if possible and never take advantage of those special ebay offers.

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I tend to watch about 5 or six items when I am bidding on another item the same, and will only bid if I don't win the earlier ones. I know I could set up bidding groups, but unless a couple of items end close together then I can never be bothered!

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I have always watched items that are being sold just to see how much or even if they will sell. If buying somthing big I will watch for a few weeks before finally commiting. I even watch the odd BIN item I guess that must confuse sellers a little! However I would point out that the number of watchers usually does give you an indication of the final bid amount.

I also find that taking great photos increases the selling price by up to 20% in some cases. I mean real good photos using a lightbox with your account watermark which gives things more authenticity. Description and end time make huge differences too.

Obviously, always make sure your auctions end on a normal (not bank holiday or major event) Sunday if possible and never take advantage of those special ebay offers.

i've got someone watching my BIN!

i had great photos of my shaver, still got 15% less than rival who used a library picture and did not offer a no quibble refund policy which i do offer. go figure! (his auct ended lunchtime weekend, mine eve weekday)

Yes, a few years back you'd only need 4 watchers for a nice last-minute snipe war. Now you can see 15 stacked up and the item gets no bids.

I just think people see and use eBay differently now.

exactly, now it seems they just watch

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