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Live auction bidding - how much is it worth?

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Have you ever bid in auction and received an invoice with charges that you were made unaware of? Or perhaps you just generally have a negative view on the live bidding platforms' fees of using their services? Read on for my views on this subject.

Usually in the 2-3 % region, it has become the norm for live auction platforms to charge such a fee for using their services. Fair enough, they need to pay their bills, but this fee can be discouraging for cost sensitive users and act as a barrier for new customers. From the perspective of the auctioneer it is of course best to have as many as possible taking part in the live bidding. Therefore we decided for the first auction to offer the Biddr live bidding platform to our users free of charge. This means The Coin Cabinet will pay the 2.5 % to Biddr, effectively reducing the Buyers' Premium with the same amount. 

Biddr normally charge 2.5 % for using their platform while many auction houses on Invaluable and The Saleroom charge as much as 5 % on top of their normal Buyers' Premium

The 2.5 % fee demonstrates the added value of 'participating' in any live bidding. Gaining live market information and acting quickly on buying opportunities is only possible by watching the bidding as it happens. My opinion, based on 10 years of buying and selling coins in auction, for both collecting and investing purposes, is that this is actually a fairly small cost. 

With the emergence of the live bidding platforms on a large scale the number of people going to room auctions have decreased dramatically. Bidding from the comfort of your own home or office can be massively time and cost saving. Add the cost of physically being present at an auction (including loss of working time etc. if you would otherwise have been in your office) and you'll start to think differently about the 2.5 %. 

I hear you saying: "But The Coin Cabinet doesn't have a room auction so there is no other option but to bid live and being charged the 2.5 %".

Yes, that's true, and that is one of the reasons I decided to offer the live bidding free of charge. The vision I have with The Coin Cabinet Auctions from start is to offer all the services a live room auction can offer (live bidding, viewing of lots, telephone bidding, auction atmosphere etc.) in a leaner and more cost-effective format-- online only bidding, viewing on appointment, email/telephone bids accepted prior to auction start, live streaming of audio (and later video). The leaner business model will transfer into cost savings which can (and will be!) awarded to the buyer/bidder in lower premiums. 

I hope this blog post has made you think a little bit differently about the live auction platforms' fees and really appreciate, rather than expect, auction houses offering this valuable service free of charge.

See you on the live bidding platform and good luck bidding!


 

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