LiquidationWith the growing popularity of penny auctions, there have been two camps debating which online bidding system is better – Live or Reserve?

To decide, let’s look at the major difference between the two. In a Live auction, anyone who places the last bid when the timer runs out wins the product, no other strings attached.

But in a Reserve auction, it’s not enough that you get the last bid in; your auction also has to meet the minimum target price before it gets awarded to you. If the target is not hit, then the bid auctions are deemed void and all placed bids returned.

What’s the use of Reserve auctions? Can’t we always have Live auctions?

Our basic comparison shows that the more attractive system for bidders is the Live auction. But even the best online auction sites need Reserve auctions to avoid losing money on big-ticket auctions and closing down for good.

In fact, penny auction scammers take advantage of the misplaced dislike for Reserve auctions. The usual scam is to fill up their website with Live auctions, wait for bidders to purchase bid packs and win auctions, then close down without delivering any items or refunding unused bids.

So just because a penny auction website is full of Live auctions, doesn’t mean it’s a stable and safe online shopping destination. Conversely, just because a penny auction website has Reserve auctions doesn’t mean that it’s a price gouger.

How do I choose a Reserve auction?

Reserve auctions are just as exciting as Live auctions when done right. First, find Reserve auctions with a reasonable reserve target. Nothing’s more disappointing than to spend a whole day bidding on an item that will become void.

Also check the terms of use of your chosen penny auction website. Make sure it has a provision that when Reserve auctions do not meet their reserve targets, you will be given your bids back. It might seem like common sense but you’ll be surprised at how many get away with omitting this.