How many days should an ebay auction for a laptop run?

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How many days should an ebay auction for a laptop run?

Postby magellan » Sat May 18, 2013 6:11 pm

Hello Bogleheads,

I've noticed we seem to have a few ebay selling experts here and I wondered what the thinking is on the optimal/minimum ebay auction length.

I've sold old laptops on ebay a handful of times, always for surprisingly high prices (to me). Usually I do a 7 day auction with a start price of $.99, but since the holiday weekend is coming, I want to list it tonight or tomorrow night at 9:30pm eastern and run it for 5 days or even 3 days. Is that enough time?

The auction is for a Dell D630 laptop and I expect the final price to be between $90 and $120 plus shipping.

Any insights would be appreciated.

Thanks,

Jim
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Re: How many days should an ebay auction for a laptop run?

Postby Ged » Sat May 18, 2013 8:48 pm

I would list it for a week.
Lack of planning on your part does not constitute an emergency on my part.
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Re: How many days should an ebay auction for a laptop run?

Postby ieee488 » Sat May 18, 2013 8:55 pm

Though I have to proof, ending auctions on a holiday weekend isn't such a good idea.

Maybe wait until next weekend to start your auction?
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Re: How many days should an ebay auction for a laptop run?

Postby magellan » Sat May 18, 2013 10:10 pm

ieee488 wrote:Though I have to proof, ending auctions on a holiday weekend isn't such a good idea.

I agree, which is why I want to run the auction for only 5 days so it'll be done before the weekend.

Interestingly, I got the laptop for a steal on ebay almost exactly 2 years ago on an auction that closed on the Sunday of memorial day weekend. The auction closing price was around 25% lower than I expected, based on completed listings. My guess is the holiday weekend closing was the reason for the low price.

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Re: How many days should an ebay auction for a laptop run?

Postby frugaltype » Wed May 22, 2013 4:27 am

I'm a buyer, not a seller. I mostly use saved searches (I have an eye out for stuff from my grandfather's company or a brand of old furniture I collect), but I also just look for items I want occasionally, like a replacement laptop.

For the former, I prefer a 5-7 day auction so I have time to notice them, since I'm not at my computer every day. Longer ones are annoying since I don't want to monitor stuff that long. Even 7 days is pushing it. I don't care what day auctions end, but I prefer not in the middle of the night because I'm not staying up for those.

For the latter, I prefer buy it now.

If something is priced at 99 cents or $1, my subconscious says it's junk. I also find hidden reserves annoying, what's that about.
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Re: How many days should an ebay auction for a laptop run?

Postby WendyW » Wed May 22, 2013 7:33 am

If it was me, I'd set up a 10-day auction scheduled to start at 7pm California time (10pm NYC time) this coming Thursday, with a starting price of $0.01 and no reserve.

This won't finish on the holiday weekend (it will wrap up the following Sunday) but that's probably a good thing.
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Re: How many days should an ebay auction for a laptop run?

Postby TomatoTomahto » Wed May 22, 2013 7:40 am

WendyW wrote:If it was me, I'd set up a 10-day auction scheduled to start at 7pm California time (10pm NYC time) this coming Thursday, with a starting price of $0.01 and no reserve.

This won't finish on the holiday weekend (it will wrap up the following Sunday) but that's probably a good thing.

I wouldn't use a 10 day auction for "fleeting interest" items like game consoles, laptops, cellphones, etc.

As I said in a posting that got lost in the reload, I found a difference between opening bids of $0.99 and $1. I have no explanation, and it was more than 5 years ago (when it actually cost an addition $0.10 to list it at $1), but the auctions did better so I spent the additional fees.
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Re: How many days should an ebay auction for a laptop run?

Postby Default User BR » Wed May 22, 2013 10:31 am

frugaltype wrote:For the former, I prefer a 5-7 day auction so I have time to notice them, since I'm not at my computer every day. Longer ones are annoying since I don't want to monitor stuff that long. Even 7 days is pushing it. I don't care what day auctions end, but I prefer not in the middle of the night because I'm not staying up for those.

Why monitor the auction all the way? Just use one of the methods for bidding your maximum, either a proxy bid or one of the sniping services, and go about your business.


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