LEARNING CURVES AND GOING BIG
Until I found DealDash, my learning curve for penny auctions had become a costly, brutal and unforgiving ride. People call penny bidding recreational shopping, but I wasn’t having fun – yet.
I waited half a year before bidding on big ticket items, as most sites suggest. Then I decided the time had come for me to win a $2,000 Apple computer. I’d won a mouse, several packs of 30 bids and a necklace worth $19.00. I felt ready to go big. So did one hundred other bidders.
The auction dragged on for a week. I saw the effects of not being allowed to place more than 25 bids in the automated bidder at any given time – you don’t get to sleep. I fed the bidder religiously until day seven. My eyes closed for a second. That’s when I lost.
Then I found a site that let me put as many bids as I wanted in the automated bidder. They also disqualified every auction where I didn’t spend as much bidding as the item’s retail cost. They especially put the kibosh on auctions I won with ten bids or less.
I took ten minutes worth of pictures of the web page, a frame every second, showing I won the auctions the site disqualified and how badly the site’s timer fails. It would go once, twice and then go on indefinite hold but nobody at that site cares.
“Read the Terms of Service,” the people in power said responding to my complaints.
I couldn’t find a magnifier strong enough to read the microscopic print. Plus I still haven’t received the IPad and laptop that the site agreed that I won, if you count paying full price as a win.
That site claims to have a Buy It Now (BIN) option. I tried to BIN when I didn’t win bit their idea of a BIN means letting me apply the cost of a fraction of the bids I lost on the item (usually 10 to 20 %) towards the item’s retail price. Then I paid for the rest of the item, but they didn’t return the other 80 to 90% of the bids that I lost.
That’s not a good BIN.
WHY A GOOD BIN MATTERS
A good BIN option means if you don’t win an auction you can purchase the item you didn’t win from the site at retail price. The site then returns to you 100% of the bids you lost at no extra cost. Good BINs take the sting out of penny auctions if you bid on items you want and can afford to buy.
I’ve bid at almost every penny auction site on the web. No two are the same. Each has its own personality, usually dictated by the attitudes of the people in charge. My horror stories abound.
I’ve run into bidders so hostile they don’t care if they lose as long as nobody else wins. Not just a few – I’m talking about all bidders on the site, an auction that looks inviting but if you get too close, stings.
At another site, I became the shame-faced owner of the world’s most expensive set of plastic containers for leftovers. The site had no Buy It Now option, which made the bidders (including me), crazed. People couldn’t
afford to stop bidding. I had to make myself remember my motto – take your losses and run. It helped me escape my first marriage and it pried me loose from that site’s clutches now.
At the lowest point in my penny bidding, my CPA suggested that I go to the most expensive stores in Beverly Hills and pay full price for whatever I wanted because I’d save more money doing that than I did at penny auctions.
“Please stop bidding,” he begged.
Not a chance. Penny bidding had escalated from a hobby into an obsession – a challenge to master and research for a small book.
WHAT’S IN IT FOR YOU AT DEALDASH
That’s when I found DealDash — the only online alternative penny auction that has it all and shares their good fortune. Everyone wins or minimally has an excellent chance of it there.
DealDash lets me stuff as many bids as I want into the automated bidder, which means I get a full night’s sleep when an auction runs longer than 16 hours, as big ticket items often do. DealDash celebrates imaginary holidays to give them a reason to sell bids discounted from $.60 to $.17 each, a quirky but endearing trait.
The first time I saw the prices of all items crossed out and the word “Free” superimposed next to all the items’ pictures on the Auctions in Progress page, I contacted DealDash.
“You’ve been hacked,” I said.
DealDash reassured me that wasn’t the case. The winner of each auction would receive that item for free — not counting the cost of bids the person used to win.
WHAT PENNY BIDDING MEANS
The term “penny bidding” refers to the amount the price of an item increases whenever someone bids. The cost
of the bids themselves can range from $ .60 to a dollar each, depending on the site.
By having all the sales DealDash holds for the (sometimes) imaginary holidays they celebrate, they consistently sell the cheapest bids of any site I’ve found. Take it from my jnana, a Buddhist and Hindu word meaning knowledge gained directly from Life, wise bidders buy as many bids as they responsibly can when bids are on sale.
Bids win auctions for people. Selling bids keeps penny auction sites alive. In other words, Get ‘em while the getting’s cheap.
DealDash turned my learning curve turned into a fun ride. They’re number one in my book and now they’re the only site where I bid.
If I lose an auction, I buy the item at a competitive price and DealDash return all the bids I lost. (I know their prices are competitive because I checked.)
DealDash likes it when customers win something for one, two, or three bids. When DealDash customers are happy, DealDash feels happy too. Whether I win or BIN, DealDash ships all merchandise right away for free, no matter how much that item weighs.
I could rave on about DealDash’s virtues endlessly. Take Kim in Support. No, don’t take her. Leave her there. She knows what customer service means. She doesn’t always give me what I want but she always gives me what’s ethical, honest and fair.
RECENT CHANGES AND IMPROVEMENTS
DealDash responds to problems in a timely, appropriate manner. For instance, when they needed to expand their servers, they did.
They cracked down on “StopBiddingAgainstMeNow&ForfeitThis1” and “WillSpend2MillToWinThisItemWillU?” — (fictional screen names). But DealDash embarked on a non-fiction anti-intimidation policy. They don’t condone bullying, threats or intimidation.
Recently they clamped down on jumpers too. Jumping describes the behavior when after the same bidders have bid on an item for a while and the auction’s winding down, suddenly a new bidder jumps into the middle of that auction. Often, this jumper will win the item for a few bids when the original bidders have spent many more. It’s a strategy but it’s not good manners. The jumper knows the other bidders will probably stop bidding because if they don’t, they’ll pay more than the item is worth.
“No Jumping” prohibits people from bidding on an item after the price reaches $5.00 if they haven’t bid on it before then. Be certain you understand what the different penny auction terms mean. If you don’t understand after perusing the site, ask. Read more about No Jumper™ auctions.
It’s not just putting these new policies in place that makes DealDash number one. Instituting these new rules shows that DealDash listens to their customers. They care about the people they serve.
My CPA’s scolding turned into as much awe as I’ve seen or heard an accountant express when he ran my latest DealDash numbers. The spread sheet shows my purchases:
- 2-Speed Lil’ Sew & Sew Mini machine – cost $0.27
- two bags of Starbucks coffee – $1.00
- Cuisinart Stick Immersion Hand Mixer – $0.45
- Beach Tandem Cruiser Bicycle for $15.77
- Big Flap Wallet – $ .03; 53-Piece Toolkit — $11.73
- Carton of Coconut Coffee K-Cups for my Keurig Coffeemaker (another DealDash win) — $0.14
- DeLonghi Steam-Driven Espresso machine for $2.48
- 32” LCD HDTV — $8.12.
Now that’s recreational shopping that’s fun and no, I didn’t make a typo on the cost of the television set. The above wins represent only a smidgeon of my DealDash successes. All merchandise auctioned is new.
But why would you read about the good deals and fun I’m having when you could enjoy getting some great deals for yourself? That’s like looking at a map instead of taking a trip.
Study the info on the site. Remember to start small before going big. Listen to your intuition and logic, not your fear, ego and greed.
Thanks DealDash for a penny auction site we can trust and for giving a happy ending to this story. You’re the best.
Notes from writer:
- 1) All incidents described above are factual but identifying details about sites other than DealDash have been withheld. This article’s purpose isn’t to site-bash, but to remind people of the saying, caveat emptor or in this situation, bidders beware. If you want to know you’re bidding at a safe site, one that will be here with your bids when you turn on your computer tomorrow, next month or next year, then let me pound around the internet, sinking in quicksand up to my neck while you stay at DealDash, happily bidding on the penny auction site that’s been around serving customers the longest and best.
- 2) This article or guest blog is not an advertisement. My good opinion hasn’t been and can’t be bought.