Starting an auction site is not as easy as you think!

By: Ekibris

If you are planning on starting an auction site, from experience I can say that you need to start small. If you start an auction site with auctions, buy now, reverse auctions, wanted ads, make offers and all the extra options the script you use can offer it will not only be too confusing for members but also you will run into many problems. The majority of the problems will start with the auctions not ending with a high enough bid for the seller to want to sell the item, therefore the seller will need to add a reserve price to every auction which will then take away the "catch a deal" aspect of the auction for the bidders. Instead you might want to start off with only offering buy now as an option, then expending the site as it grows. One of the major advantages of doing this is that it will also seem like you are constantly adding innovations to the site as the site grows, the site will not look "dead". In addition to this, the second advantage this can bring you is that you can send an e-mail to your members every time you add a new feature to you site. This way you're not sending annoying spam, but instead informative e-mails about the website.
You will want to find a niche as there are already too many sites "trying" to compete with eBay or similar sites. But instead of trying to enter an already saturated market you might want to try to enter an untouched market (for example a country eBay has not yet been established in, or a niche market which specializes in certain items). That way you can offer extra services for the specific niche that you are offering. This will give you a competitive edge against your competitors and also you will have a higher chance to drive traffic from search engines due to your specific keyword; niche.
Another main aspect of forming such a website is that people need to feel safe using your site. It will help if you can offer support (online support via chat), add a phone number, address of your company, company details, and also a SSL certificate. These will help build trust to your site and people return to sites that they trust. On the other hand if you leave a bad first impression they probably won't return unless they are referred via an alternative source which states that there are changes to the site; so make sure you leave a good first impression.

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