Thursday, January 5, 2012

Bargain Shopper Aspirations

Have you ever purchased anything on ebay?  I, personally, have not.  I'm not much of
a bargain shopper due to general lack of time and shopping laziness.  But I've recently set
out on a mission to find Shawn a stand for his record player.  My husband has a
beautiful record player that, since moving into our new house 2 years ago, has not
really found it's perfect spot yet.  On the bookshelf, inside an armoire, on our desk:
Shawn's record player has bounced from place to place, longing for the perfect home
inside our home.  And so, while my husband is away for work, I decided to surprise him
by finding the perfect record player stand.  There's a corner in our bedroom that
has remained empty, just waiting to be utilized, where I plan to display the record player
and our vast collection of albums: The Beatles, Rolling Stones, Bob Dylan, Fleetwood
Mac.  Albums given to us by our parents, purchased over the years during our
traveling adventures.  While Shawn is away, I'm going to create a little space in our room
for one of his most prized possessions.
So, through countless google searches, I found the perfect record player stand on ebay.  I
was the first bidder and there were only 5 hours left to the sale!  I bid $1 above the
minimum bid and checked back every hour or so to see if anyone had upped the ante.
As the time ticked down, my excitement grew: I was the only person bidding on
this beautiful, Mid century record player stand!  Two minutes left, it's going to be mine, I
just know it!  One minute, I can just imagine it in our bedroom right now!  10 seconds, 
9, 8, and THEN: the screen changed and ebay informed me that my bid had not 
been accepted, someone outbid me at the last minute by $1!!!
WHAT?!  How was this even possible?  For 5 hours I was the only person bidding on this item
and then, in the last 8 seconds some record player stand lover snatched my prize up?  I
was completely irritated and frustrated by this entire process, to say the least.  Is there
some type of strategy behind this that I, the ebay virgin, am not aware of?  
And so the search continued, my dreams of becoming a successful ebay auction
winner completely deflated.  Thank God for Etsy, a website I can get behind.  I found a
record player stand almost identical to the one I found on ebay, only about $20 more, and
it is currently in route to Louisiana as we speak.  I have big dreams for this musical corner
of our bedroom, a new piece of art I want to hang, the anticipation of my husband's face
when he sees it all come together.  Ebay and I got off to a rough start, but so it
goes sometimes with even the best relationships.

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Sarbear said...

Ebay is tricky. I always just bid the top of what I am willing to spend, and they only increase your bid in order to out-bid other bidders, so you will still only pay a little above what other people will, but not necessarily your total bid and never more. Well that sounds confusing. Yes, etsy is much more simplified and is quite a relief when you don't want to worry about if you will or will not "win" the item.

In other news, I am looking forward to seeing what you do for your music corner. I hope you'll share the finished product. :)


deanna@delirious-rhapsody said...

i think a lot of people intentionally wait until the last minute and then outbid the other person. kind of give them a false sense of security, and then snatch away the prize at the last second.

Renee said...

That's exactly what they do Deanna!! We have Ebay, but Trade me is our NZ version that i use, the pro's wait til the very last minute to try to whip in and swipe the goods for the cheapest price! Fortunately (maybe) Trade Me have installed a thing so that if a bid is made with less than a minute left on the auction, it auto extends to give everyone else a chance! Not sure if Ebay does tho!! They do Auto bids for ya tho, like Sarbears explained up top, where the computer just automatically bids for you up to the amount you'v specified! I prefer just going to the shop now! (Hate bidding because of the 'sharks'!)

Little Gray Pixel said...

Ebay is an evil wench. There are actually programs seasoned pros use that help them snipe at the last second. It's really rare to get something you want without either (a) getting into a bidding war and paying way too much or (b) setting your top price higher than you'd really like to pay. I prefer to forgo the auctions and Buy It Now when possible!