Friday, October 31, 2008

ebay etiquette

I was watching an auction for a pair of "slightly used" Zero Gravity Negative G SS brakes. I was interested, but not at the reserve the seller set. It turns out no one else was either and the auction ended without a single bid.

So I emailed the guy, told him I noticed his auction ended and that he hadn't sold the brakes. I also told him I was interested, and told him I would bid if he listed the item again with a lower reserve...or that I would be willing to buy the brakes straight up for $X.

I would think it bad form to offer a seller cash for an item up for bid in exchange for the seller canceling the auction. But is it bad form to make an offer on an item after the auction has ended and the item went unsold?

He hasn't yet replied.


Scott said...

Isn't this a part of your primary research? My question is this: If you found the item on Ebay and it didn't sell, are you cheating Ebay out of their commission if he sells it to you directly? Ebay protects the buyer and seller from fraud, but if you and he are willing to work it out together, I don't have any ethical issues with cutting out the middle man, especially since he already paid to list the item once. Ebay just takes their cut again (in the form of listing fees and the commission on the sale) if he lists it again.

Cody said...

I see all the time where people offer to pay $x- amout (usually pretty high) and have the seller take the item off listing. ? how many do.

Scott has a point. But maybe he just doesn't want to sell for under the amout he wants.
Maybe he's just busy.

I think you are ok...

Elise said...

No sellers set up the reverse all the time where if they are offered moeny in their local market they will end the bid.

But I am always looking for deals and often email post auction offers to sellers.