Ridiculously overpriced items on internet auction sites - Why???
Can anyone explain why some business sellers have outrageously priced items on their lists of items? For example, a laptop power supply which might reasonably sell for between £4.50 and £20, on for £1499.00?
Is it a scam, a method of moving money abroad, getting money from one's company account to a personal one, or something completely innocuous such as a way of keeping a listing running when you've run out of stock, to avoid a relisting fee?
I've tried G**gling it but not found any answers. Can anyone satisfy my curiosity?
I have no answer, but along the same lines... I often see a book on Amazon for say $50, and "Available used from $120" or something like that , i.e. people are selling used copies for well over double the new price. I found a partial answer on Google, which has to do with used vendors setting their price at say 30% above the lowest price - which fails when the only vendors all all/both doing this and apparently has led to some really stupendous prices, millions.
But if I was coding an automated pricing scheme like this, I'd put in a sanity check for a book that is in print to not try and sell it for more than the new price.
I don't own this space under my name. I should have leased it while I still could
Join Date: Dec 2002
The $1499 could be a misprint?
The Amazon issue may well be that Amazon have set postal rates and a heavy used book would be sold at a loss if sold at under the new price. OTOH I have just bought a used book for peanuts where the new price is mega bucks.
I reckon it's because, for every 9,999 people who search for the lowest price, there's one sucker who'll buy it for the first price they find, often that high asking price, and the sellers know this.
Not dissimilar from even grotty restaurants having one or two very over-priced and expensive bottle of plonk in their cellars, because some eejit will always want to be flash, and sing out "bring me a bottle of your best, my man," to which the waiter scuttles off and digs out the hugely marked-up expensive bottle.
Not quite on topic, but I've watched bidding on used items rise above the cost of new unused items. It seems that some bidders 'get carried away' and haven't checked the availability of the item elsewhere. Agreed that if you need the item regardless of cost then the price is what they can get for it.
I have wondered this too. I was looking for a new item, can't remember what, think most were about £40. I saw one item around £140 so emailed the seller to ask why it was so much more expensive, was it a mistake? never heard back and bought the cheaper item. Since then I have seen it happen many times on various listings.
or something completely innocuous such as a way of keeping a listing running when you've run out of stock, to avoid a relisting fee?
This is close but not quite what's happening.
When you list multiple lots of the same item for sale on ebay on a "buy it now" basis, where it appears on a search will sometimes depend on how long the listing has been going. If a seller has sold out of one particular item and is waiting for new stock, they sometimes increase the price to a stupid figure so that the listing won't drop off and have to go to the bottom of the list when they get new stock and relist the goods.
If you look at this listing for example 9 Cell Battery for DELL Inspiron 1525 1526 1545 M911G | eBay you will see that the seller has sold 163 of these, all at £16.99, but has recently revised the price to £1699. Even though they've not sold any recently, the listing still shows near the top of the list when you do a search for "Dell 9 cell battery", so when they restock, the listing will be easily visible to people searching for that product.
a few years back now, when the Wii fiirst came out, I wanted one. I looked in a few places and couldn't find it. Amaz0n stated that they would be in stock in about 6 weeks.
I waited but also looked on flea-bay. I saw that people were paying extraordinary prices. Had another look on Amaz0n and they were in stock, 4 weeks early.
I bought 6, with free 24hr delivery.
Sold 5 on E-bay at an average of £45 above the price that Amaz0n were selling them for... Amaz0n still had them in stock during my auction.
I received 2 messages asking if I had any more for sale. I was so bored with wrapping them up and taking them to the post office, that I wrote back and told them they could get them cheaper themselves.
It never amazes me how much dome people will pay on auction sites... they seem to think that they must be getting a bargain just because it is for sale on the site!
I was lucky that I hit it at the right time. I'm sure a week later I would not have managed to do the same thing.
Good luck and fortuitous timing meant I effectively got a free Wii, and some cashback. Kind of glad really because I've only used it about 5 times!
Some suppliers quote long lead times, which suggests that they don't hold stock and will source from other suppliers. Their prices also suggest that they simply buy from other suppliers and add their markup so that they cover their costs and make some profit.
I'm not suggesting that that explains prices which are, perhaps, a hundred times normal, but it can explain why some list prices that are higher than their competitors.
I used to supply parts for automatic transmission repairs and we bought-in when regular customers requested something that we didn't stock rather than send them away.
I just failed to win an item on Ebay. It consisted of four engine intake filters. I put my maximum bid (and only bid) at a level of four times the purchase price of individual items of exactly the same type for sale elsewhere on Ebay. This was so I could take advantage of the free postage offered with the item, rather than paying postage elsewhere.
My sole bid had been there for three days. There were no other bidders until the final couple of minutes. Two other bidders came online and between them kept bumping the price up until they could both have bought four individual filters and paid more than the individual postage on each!
Or it was the seller and his cohorts shill-bidding you up to see how high you were prepared to go, and hoping you were going to put in a 'killer bid' in the last few seconds. Look out for a second chance offer in the near future.
I have had the buyers bidding beyond the retail price for things. I sometimes wonder if its because the retail price varies geographically, otherwise the buyers have just lost touch with the current retail price of things.
There's business to be made by buying medium-bulky stuff, particularly if its seasonal, which amateur sellers advertise as 'collection only'. Shortly before the end of the auction, offer to arrange a courier to collect it. Many sellers will agree to this, so you get it at a knockdown price without having to go and get it. Then re-advertise it offering Europe-wide postage so you have a huge potential customer base, and you can get a decent price for it. There are plenty of courier companies who will ship stuff around Europe at prices which keep the whole thing worthwhile.
Last edited by Mechta; 19th Mar 2012 at 19:55.
I bought a coffee grinder, didnt really like it, so after a few months use, I put it on Ebay as a USED item with orignal packaging and reciept so warranty could be claimed. I hoped to get about half retail price maybe but didnt expect much more than that. 2 bidders got in a frenzy as it was ending. The winner would of felt like a loser when they got the package, and found they paid more than the new price !!! not including the postage cost.
2 bidders got in a frenzy as it was ending. The winner would of felt like a loser when they got the package, and found they paid more than the new price !!! not including the postage cost.
Exactly my point.
I always try never to get involved in this; I decide in advance what the item is worth, to me, including the postage costs, just like any other purchase. My usual method of bidding is to wait until the last few seconds on an item with no bids (there's often a number of identical items for sale, I try to avoid the ones with other bids). Doesn't always work, but very often it does. The sellers hate it, but so be it; that's the risk of a selling with no reserve to save a couple of quid in fees.