A vehicle buyer entering an online auction for the first time is likely to be filled with doubt and confusion – which is absolutely normal. While online auctions are becoming increasingly popular, they are not without their controversies, which means that people who are skeptical are bound to be concerned about scams.
However, turning to an online vehicle auction to purchase a car can offer plenty of benefits, some of which we will be discussing in this blog.
Having said that, before we dive into the benefits of online vehicle auctions, let us just briefly touch upon the two major kinds of auctions: dealer auctions and public auctions. Dealer auctions are those that are open only to buyers possessing dealers’ licenses. Public auctions, on the other hand, are available to everyone.
The Buying Process at Online Vehicle Auctions
While an online vehicle auction might appear confusing from afar, the buying process is actually quite simple. Pretty much every online auction platform operates in a similar manner, and requires you to first get yourself registered. Once you have registered yourself, you will get your own account which you can then use to log in to the platform. Once you have logged in and gained access to the auction, you can start placing bids on the vehicles of your choice. If you need any assistance at any point, there are usually live auction specialists available for precisely that purpose.
Now, let us get down to the benefits that online vehicle auctions provide.
Benefits of Buying Online Auction Vehicles
Access to Dealer auctions:
For one, you can use online auction platforms to gain access to auctions that are reserved only for dealers. Such platforms offer their unique dealers’ licenses which buyers use to take part in their vehicle auctions. An opportunity to participate in a dealer’s auction is an opportunity to purchase a car from the very auction that dealers buy their inventory from. This exclusivity is one of the biggest advantages of online vehicle auctions.
Yet, another significant advantage of online vehicle auctions is the lower prices that they offer. Buying a vehicle over the internet provides you the opportunity to save a significant amount of money. Since online vehicle auctions are reserved for dealers, the car prices offered at these auctions are also intended for dealers. In other words, you get the chance to grab a car at the price that a dealer would pay for the same vehicle.
With online auctions, you can purchase vehicles that would have been beyond your budget at a dealership. This is because a dealer will naturally mark-up the price of the cars that they purchase at auctions.
Major vehicle auction houses offer huge car inventories, which even include SUVs and motorcycles. At an online auction, you will be able to find second-hand vehicles with several different titles, including insurance cars and salvage cars. In fact, some repossessed vehicles can also end up being bargain purchases. More often than not, such cars are in excellent condition, and available at considerably lower prices than you would get at dealerships.
Massive vehicle variety is something that you will find lacking at dealerships – not to mention that the higher prices narrow your options down even further. On the other hand, online auctions, with their numerous options and lower prices, offer a lot of promise for car buyers.
No need to leave the house:
Perhaps the most significant advantage of an online vehicle auction is that it allows you to purchase your desired vehicle without sacrificing the comfort of your home. In addition, not having to visit a dealership allows you to save gas and money. Furthermore, you can also save time by ‘visiting’ numerous auction houses with just a few clicks of your mouse or a few keyboard taps.
Tips for Purchasing a Vehicle at an Online Auction
Now that we have covered the major benefits of online vehicle auctions, it is time for us to arm you with a few tips that will help you make the most out of a car auction:
Know the maximum bid beforehand:
Make sure to set the maximum bidding amount before starting your bid. Ask yourself about the maximum amount that you would want to pay for a particular car. While setting this maximum bid, you must focus on the actual value of the car that you plan to buy. Unless you are desperate to get a certain car for a specific reason, avoid setting a maximum bid that is more than the vehicle’s actual value.
Avoid getting emotionally invested:
It is not uncommon for bidders to lose themselves in the thrill of the bidding process, or to get overly attached to a particular vehicle at the auction. However, if you get emotionally attached, you will likely end up losing the online car auction. Emotional attachment forces you to think irrationally, which means that you might end up overpaying for a vehicle. To avoid this from happening, you must remain objective at all times and focus on the maximum bid that you have established.
Consider shorter auctions:
The duration of an online auction can be anywhere from a couple of hours to a week or more. Often, shorter auctions improve your chances of winning as you will be competing against fewer people. In addition, it will be possible for you to closely monitor such auctions since you won’t have to commit several days.
Bid odd amounts:
We recommend setting maximum bids to odd number or fractions. For instance, rather than setting a bid of $8,000, you could, say, go for $8000.23. This way, you will be able to defeat any bidders bidding at the standard $8,000.
Bid during busy times:
Yet, another effective tactic for winning an online auction is bidding at a time when people are occupied. For instance, you could place bids during early morning since people are getting ready to go to work. Or, you might choose late afternoon or early evening for your bids since this is the time when people are usually commuting home. You should also consider placing bids in auctions ending on holidays since this will mean that people will usually take their eye off the ball in the final few minutes of the online auction.
An online vehicle auction presents numerous advantages, especially for those who know how to play the game right. We sincerely hope that this guide on online vehicle auctions will prove useful to you.