How to Start a Bidding War over Your Car in 5 Steps

How to Start a Bidding War over Your Car in 5 Steps

More bids mean more money for your car. Here’s how to start a bidding war.

Line illustration of a gavel used in an auction. This is how to start a bidding war using auctions. Bidding is one of the few cases where quantity is quality. So let’s talk about how to start a bidding war over your car. Then we’ll get to work on fetching you more bids on your car and maybe even start a bidding war. 

Auctions use a few economic and psychological principles to help connect the seller with the buyer of greatest need. Greater need translates to higher prices. Those principles include social proof, scarcity, and competition, which you can read more about on the Carmigo Green Light

Because of these principles, the more bids a listing receives, the more likely it is to receive more bids. For humans, it’s easier for us to do something we’ve seen others similar to us doing. 

It’s like how the more popular a trend becomes, the more people adopt it. Think of it as compounding interest…in your car.

Setting a competitive price is how to start a bidding war for your car.1. Set a Competitive Price

A reasonable starting price (even one that may be a little under what you want) will encourage the first bidder to bid. 

Some auctions, like Carmigo, operate on a reserve price. This means you set the lowest price you’re willing to sell for. Setting a competitive reserve price will give more bidders confidence they can meet it.

As more bids come in, other bidders become more confident in the quality and value of the car. Like we said earlier, more bids mean more money. 

This is no guarantee, but making your price competitive will usually get the ball rolling.

Getting a certification badge from your auction platform is how to start a bidding war for your car.2. Qualify for Auction Certification Badges

Many auctions certify cars that meet certain requirements, and those certifications attract more attention.

For instance, we put a Carmigo Certified Badge on listings that meet our qualifications. And then buyers are more likely to bid on a listing we’ve certified. 

Make sure your auction platform provides similar badges and certifications.

How to start a bidding war? List a clean car.3. Look Your Best

Think of your car listing as a job interview. You get dressed up to make a good first impression, and if you dress your car up a little, it will make a better first impression too.

Pictures of a clean car make it easier for bidders to assess. And a clean car leaves bidders with an impression of a car that’s been cared for.

Keeping good service records is how to start a bidding war for your car.4. Keep Good Service Records

Like with photos, proof that the car has been consistently and well maintained builds confidence in your listing.

Dig those body-shop receipts out of your glove compartment and contact your local mechanic or dealership to see if they have maintenance details. 

Taking good photos of premium upgrades is how to start a bidding war for your car.5. Take Photos of the Good Stuff

If you’ve got premium add-ons, like a sunroof, on-board navigation, premium entertainment system, or third-row seating, take pictures and point out the details. 

These are the kinds of things that can increase the value of a used car, so be sure to document them. 

Find an Auction

Finally, you can’t start a bidding war if you don’t sell through an auction. So find a good auction platform that will work with you to get the best price for your car. We personally think Carmigo is the best way to sell your car. But we’re biased.