When I saw Konstantinos’ article today about NameJet bidding, it reminded me of a topic I intended to write about before but never got around to it. It makes me wonder when I see an auction with a high bid of $25,000, $50,000 or even $100,000 when the auction has a reserve price of $100,001 – $250,000. Why would someone bid on an auction when their bid will be below the reserve price minimum? What’s the point?
I presume there is a legitimate strategy behind this kind of bidding because I see bidders who I know have spent 6 figures+ on auctions doing it, but I want to point out something that could also be a reason for it. NameJet does not show the auction reserve range on its iPhone bidder app. Bidders who use the app to place bids are doing so somewhat blindly.
On my app that I use regularly when I am away from my desk, I can only see that a domain name has a reserve price with the little “R” icon. Unless I am logged in and bidding from a browser window, I can’t see what the reserve price range is. Essentially, if I am bidding on a name with a $10,000 minimum price on the NameJet app, I would have no idea what the range is – only that there is a reserve.
It used to make me wonder why someone would bid so far below the reserve price range if there was no way they would be able to win. Now I simply presume the bidder doesn’t know the reserve range because they could be using the app.
I have two guesses for why this information isn’t on the app. My first guess is that NameJet doesn’t think this information is valuable enough to take up space on the small auction page. My second guess is that NameJet hasn’t made a major update on the app design since it began accepting private auctions that have reserve prices. I haven’t asked so I don’t know.
This isn’t really related to the topic Konstantinos wrote about today, but his article reminded me about it.