What you should know
First time visitors to penny auctions sites wonder what kind of goods they may come across. One thing is certain; variety seems to be the rule in about 95% of the cases. The shopping experience can be taken to a whole new level by joining the ranks of enthusiastic bidders online. What attracts penny auction site participants the most, apart from the enjoyment and entertainment factor, is the hope to get top-quality items at very a very convenient price.
What kinds of items can we find?
Although products vary may vary from site to site and the quality of some products is significantly better in some sites than others, there are certain categories that can be found in almost all penny auction sites. These categories are:
Seized goods and police stock
Some bidding sites are endorsed held and run by government institutions or by the police force themselves. In these sites, bidders-to-be can find all kinds of rare objects, such as pieces of jewelry, watches or even gold bars. Having been part of seized or unclaimed goods, some curious items can be purchased for half their price. These items range from warehouse stock items, electronic products, military weapons and apparel, working tools, museum pieces or relics, even. Taking part in these kinds of auctions may be highly advantageous to the knowledgeable shopper. Sometimes stocks may strike as a great deal, but turn out to be useless, oftentimes damaged goods. This is why rookies should look for more commonplace sites, though.
Cars and Car accessories
Let us not be deceived, not all penny auction sites feature cars to bid on. There are a small number of exclusive sites that do feature these items. As you can imagine, auctions that put automobiles up can get really competitive. There have been tales of lucky players who share their thrill in blogs or magazines. It must be noted that penny auction users who manage to win so important a prize, are not only lucky, they have been successful mainly because they have been skillful and talented throughout the bidding process. Apart from actual cars, some of the sites advertise car parts and accessories. These are the most widely-sought after: car alarm security systems, tires, audio systems for cars, tool roadside emergency kits, jump starters and GPS.
One of the main reasons why many people flock to penny auction sites and persist in trying over and over. Computers are by far one of the most cherished categories in any bidding site inventory. What’s the catch? Buy high-end technology at knock-off bargain prices without breaking a sweat. The variety is so diverse that many new bidders fall easy prey and end up overpaying items. It is true that some transactions may turn out to be a great deal. Other purchases however, may be very disappointing, especially when the goods are shipped and the computer you get at home looks nothing like the one advertised on the page.
Of course some penny auctions sites are serious and trustworthy, but it is in this category that most scam alerts are raised. The most popular items hundreds of anxious bidders turn to are: laptops, I-pads and tablets, printers and monitors, USB flash and hard drives, all-in-one desktops and finally, a wide variety of accessories that would include webcams, speakers, an optical mouse or headsets. What about brands? The most popular, safety endorsed sites will feature well-known top brands, other less popular sites may offer generic items which look good on your screen, but look much older in real life.
Yet another category that turns the competitive heat on, electronic items are responsible for rekindling the fire in a dull auction. When penny auction sites have valuable electronics to put up on auction, they advertise it with pop ups or banners that inform bidders when the auction will take place and how much time there is left until the bidding begins, thus creating a sense of expectation. Within this category, the most esteemed objects are BluRay players, I pod and MP3 players, home theater, headphones and some electrical musical instruments, such as guitars, bass guitars or keyboards. For smart and patient auction-wise bidders, these items represent their chance of really getting a good deal.
Another star in the auction sky, mobile phones represent one of the most heavily bid on categories. The bad news is that there aren’t so many sites out there that feature so many phones. Also, these auctions can get so competitive that some items go way overpriced. Participants fail to recognize that they would be far better off by just purchasing the product online the traditional way, rather than stressing out in an auction. There is something about mobile phones that make people want to keep at it, just for the sake of their egos, even if this means making a bad deal. I-phones and Android based mobiles are the most popular items on this list.
Fashion, Cosmetics and Apparel
This is one of the most interesting categories as it knows not of rules, whatsoever. In this realm, anything is possible. You can find expensive designer perfumes or handbags, silk scarves or gloves, leather jackets or even a pair of socks. Some sites’ fashion section is pitiful; just a couple of windbreakers or sweatshirts. Other sites, on the other hand, provide a whole new wardrobe for the persistent bidder who ends up winning a prize. Watch out for some sites that advertise leather or fur clothing: some have ended in flops.
Jewelry and Coins
Gold, silver and gemstones are very tempting, especially when there is a chance that you may buy them at lower-than-usual prices. If you are planning on bidding on such items, it is wise to do plenty of research beforehand. If the site is safe, go ahead, if it looks to good to be true, stay away. This is another category about which there have been hundreds of claims: angry winners who got phony cheap plastic jewelry wrapped in some more plastic.
To conclude, whatever category you wish to bid items on, make sure you find out more about the products, their retail prices and conditions under which the transaction will be carried out.