There’s a new idea on online auctions being done by Bidaroo.com. You sign up and place bids on items. The maximum bid accepted is 80% to 90% off of the product’s retail price. So for instance, they have a Nintendo Wii on the front page and the maximum bid accepted is $30. When the auction ends the highest unique bid wins. Let’s say i bid $25.64. If anyone else bid $25.64 both of our bids would be rejected. If anyone bid higher then me and wasn’t eliminated by having someone else negate their bid then they receive the item. Seems like a good way to get a nice item at a low price. They also have a maximum number of bids that are accepted. Only 47 bids are being accepted for the Wii. Bidaroo even donates a portion of your winning bid — a minimum of 25% — to the charity of your choice. On top of that, the shipping is free for all auctions!
Sounds pretty dang cool. So what’s the catch? You have to pay for each bid you make. On the Wii example above you have to pay $9.99 for each bid you make. So if i were to win the auction i would pay less than $45 for a $300 item and have it shipped. If i lost, me and 46 other people are out $9.99. So it looks like Bidaroo would actually make $200 in profit from the sale. That comes out to win/win for Bidaroo and for the auction winner. But many bidders lose not only the bid but also a chunk of cash. It is a gamble for bidders so adds a bit more risk and excitement to the auction.
Probably not the right system for me but it could be a way of getting a high priced item for way less money for people interested in betting on the unknown.