Five Tips for Selling at Live Auctions

Ah, the old-fashioned country auction! The idea of a country auction conjures up certain images for people. The image of a fast-talking auctioneer offering up an antique table or chair is a popular example.

People who are buying household goods or collectibles are looking to get their items at the lowest price possible. However, the people who are selling their items at auction are hoping for the highest price!

Unless a person is in the business of buying and selling antiques or other items, not a lot of thought goes into how goods are prepared for sale via the auction process. However, if you are one of the growing number of people using auction venues to sell your collectibles or other inventory, there are a few things to learn first about how to sell at auction before you bring a truckload of stuff over to the next event.

Tip 1: Make sure the things you want to sell are a good “fit” for the auction house you’ll be using.

Never bring a load to an auction house without actually having been to one of the previous auctions. It’s important to get a feel for the type of goods that the house sells. For example, at one very rural country auction it was common for the owners to sell live chickens, pots and pans, car parts, and farm equipment.

After close investigation, this would not be the right venue for selling your daughter’s “Hello Kitty” collection. On the other hand, the spare John Deere parts that you bought at last week’s yard sale might be just the right thing for the buying crowd at this auction.

Tip 2: Be sure you clearly understand the terms and policies of the auction house.

Visit with the auctioneer ahead of time. Call to find out what the best days and times are to visit. One of the worst possible times to drop in for an informational visit with an auctioneer is the day of the auction. Call ahead and ask. While you’re at it, find out what are the best days and times to drop your stuff off.

Once you have a little time with the auctioneer, you’ll be able to find out what type of commission he or she takes from consigners (which is you), and what type of paperwork might be needed. Some auction houses send out Form 1099 tax forms at the end of the year. An auctioneer may need to see your identification and have you fill out a W-9. Be prepared.

Find out what happens to your items if they don’t sell. For example, some auctioneers may have a minimum starting bid. If, for some reason, one of your items does not sell, it may be grouped with another one of your pieces. Know the auctioneer’s strategy beforehand so that you aren’t surprised on pay day.

Tip 3: Make sure the auctioneer knows what you’re selling.

It might be perfectly obvious to you that the signed print you are consigning is a rare and valuable piece of art. However, the auctioneer may not know this particular artist. Make a note of anything particularly special about your items, and leave the note with the piece. Be sure to tell the auctioneer about it as well. He or she might determine that this is something to highlight on the company website or in the newspaper listing.

Tip 4: Present your items neatly.

No one likes to have to dig through a box full of grimy and greasy car parts to see what treasures might be in there. Separate the parts and lay them out on a flat, or use more than one box to de-clutter the lot.

There is no need to buy fancy display boxes. It’s easy enough to go to the local convenience store or supermarket and ask if you can have the emptied boxes or flats that they are discarding.

While it’s good to present clean items, take care not to ruin the value of anything by over cleaning. For example, if you find some old cast iron cookware, clean the obvious dirt and grime, but don’t scrub it to its original finish. For many people, this ruins the value of the item. So, clean and tidy and organized is the key here.

Tip 5: Don’t complain to the auctioneer if your stuff doesn’t sell for as much as you’d like.

The phrase to remember here is, “You win some; you lose some.” That’s just the way it is. There are some days where an auction house is loaded with people who all seem to want what you’re selling. There will be other days where the crowd is sparse, and the bidding is simply not competitive.

Remember that it’s in the auctioneer’s best interest to sell your things for the highest possible hammer price. But sometimes, it’s just not going to be a stellar sale. The auctioneer is only human, and is also disappointed if a sale doesn’t go as well as planned.

If you notice that every time you bring a bunch of goods to sell that you’re not realizing as much as you think you honestly should, try another auction venue and compare apples to apples. That is, bring the same types of items to the new auctioneer and compare the results.

Unless the auctioneer is particularly disagreeable or inconsiderate to you or buyers, there is no reason to confront him or her about a sale. If you find you just don’t care for an auctioneer’s style or methods, find another one. Believe me, there are plenty of them out there!

The primary thing to remember as you learn how to sell at auction is that the business is unpredictable at best. You will have good days, some not-so-good days, some great days. The more you sell, the more experience you will gain, and the more enjoyable the business will be.

Best Rated Home Base Businesses – Who Do You Believe? Does Such a List Even Exist?

So I decided recently I wanted to write an article on the best rated home base businesses out there. You see, recently I started one myself, and I have to be honest with you, it took a tremendous amount of research and due diligence in order to find something that suited me and fitted into what I was looking for. The internet is a big scary place for your average Joe, and if you want to find a list of the best rated home base businesses online I guarantee you will find not one, but a whole mountain of lists. The only problem with this mountain of list is that they are all different.

What use is that? One article says “X is the best business to start” and in the very next best rated home base businesses article, business “X” doesn’t even feature. I started to realise that I needed to take the information I was getting with a pinch of salt and look at it with a skeptical yet open mind. You see what I wanted was for someone to tell me exactly what I should do, or at least give me a list of the best rated home base businesses. That way I could choose between the top three and I couldn’t fail.

Unfortunately it didn’t and still doesn’t work this way. Firstly most best rated home base businesses lists don’t concur with each other, they are all different. Secondly you need to remember that the biggest asset in your business is you. If you can’t swim there is no way you can run a swimming school. finding the right business is a very personal thing and the process of choosing one which best suits you can be a lengthy process. Choosing based on someone else’s ranking or list is not a wise thing to do.

People that want to work from home all have a few things in common. They want to work for themselves, giving them time to do what they want, when they want. They want to create financial freedom, they want to be at home to spend time with their family, and they want to create passive income for a more secure future. The problem is that when we come across a list of best rated home base businesses they all offer these exact things. What they don’t tell you is what you have to do in order to achieve these goals. People then get stars in their eyes and before they know it they have dived head first into something that just isn’t right for them.

I did exactly that, my first attempt at a home based business was a complete disaster. I was completely star struck. The promise of all that money I would make, the time I would have to spend with my family or doing the things I love, left me giddy. Then reality set in. I needed to sell. What, me, sell? I hated direct selling. Worst of all I had to sell to my family and friends. On top of all that I had no interest whatsoever in the products I was selling. All that my best rated home base businesses list had done was put me in a position I didn’t want to be in and I ended up feeling like a failure. Don’t fall into the same trap as me. In your search for the best rated home base businesses remember that one lid doesn’t fit all pots. Find what is right for you and then commit. I took the time and now have a very successful business.

What Is Co-Op Advertising?

Co-op advertising may be something that you have heard of before, but you may not actually understand what it is. Once you can fully grasp what this type of marketing and advertising strategy is, you can use it to get the services you need for your business for free.

What is Co-Op Advertising?

In the past, co-op advertising was essentially when a manufacturer underwrote the entire cost of an advertising campaign for a retailer or wholesaler, as long as their products were prominently featured. How can this be helpful to you, the small business owner or entrepreneur, today? Instead of operating on the old model of co-op advertising, you can use a new version that is highly effective and can lead to you getting your advertising for free.

Co-op advertising today operates on the same basic principle, cutting costs on advertising while targeting an audience for two different entities. This type of advertising in the past targeted the consumer that wanted a specific product and influenced them to go to a specific store. Today, you can use the similar model in a different way.

The New Model of Co-Op Advertising

In the new model of co-op advertising, an individual, independent contractor, company, organization or business will completely plan, organize, assemble and produce advertising, marketing and promotions for one or more promotion partners. In essence, one leader will carry out an entire marketing advertising and promotions plan using various vehicles, for promotion partners that they have found who will underwrite the entire amount of costs involved. The organizer must seek out the promotion partners and present the opportunity in an effective way to the possible partners, leading to an opportunity in which all of the costs are paid for. This leaves the organizer to enjoy the benefits of the promotion absolutely free.

Why would the promotion partners want to cover all of the costs of the campaigns, while the organizer also reaps the benefits without having to pay any money at all? Because the organizer is doing all of the work. In essence, the cost of the labor and planning of the organizer is paid for with free advertising.

How Free Advertising, Marketing and Promotions Work

The organizer is the central part of the co-op advertising model. The main goals of the organizer are to:

Identify and effectively present to possible promotion partners
Plan an advertising campaign that works correctly for all partners
Assemble all of the ads
Produce marketing and advertising materials
Design and implement a distribution strategy
Carry out the advertising and marketing plans effectively
The organizer will provide all of the above and in turn, the promotion partners will cover the underwriting costs of the campaign. This is a win-win-win situation for all parties, enabling the organizer and the promotion partners to get what they want, which is quality advertising at an affordable cost.