Struggling to establish your WordPress auction website? Merely using a powerful WordPress auction plugin is not enough to secure a space in this highly competitive market. There are many other aspects that play a vital role in making an auction website successful. In this article, we will cover a handful of useful tips to run an auction website successfully.
Tips to run a successful online auction website :-
Why set up an online auction website? Define your goals
Identifying your business goal is the first step to defining a clear strategy for your website.
The target audience, auction type, bidding strategy, etc. will all be based on what you are trying to achieve. So, the first and foremost step is to finalise the goal.
Some of the typical reasons for setting up an auction site are –
- To clear old stocks
- Sell out the goods that are no longer required
- To promote newly launched productions
- For fundraising
Here are some points that you need to bear in mind while deciding your goal –
- Understand the trends in the market and accordingly set your goal
- Analyze competitors’ businesses and strategies
- Plan for something which is within your capacity and can be achieved easily
Use the right auction software that has all the features you need
The best way to meet all your auction website needs is to use a WordPress auction plugin that is exclusively designed for the purpose. WooAuction Software is one such advanced tool to set up an auction in WordPress and WooCommerce. It allows you to create standard, simple forward auctions, reverse auctions, and penny auctions. Auctions can have a reserve price and buy now price defined as well. The reserve price needs to be met to complete the auction process. And, one may directly purchase an item. by paying the buy now price. This WordPress auction plugin is user-friendly and well documented.
Plan thoroughly before you begin
Auctions are usually conducted by commercial websites and in most cases, a team works to execute the plans. You need to define everything clearly so that your team has no confusion.
These are the things that should be part of your auction strategy
- Critical success factors
- A clear roadmap with timelines
- A responsibility matrix for your team
- A risk management plan
Know your potential bidders
The formula to succeed in any business is to feel the pulse of your customers. You need to step into the shoes of your prospect bidders and try to understand why they would take part in an auction. What are the motives behind that? Which are the things that they want in an online auction? What type of bidding strategy do they prefer? Understanding these things will help you to win your customers easily.
For conducting an online auction try to find out the following things about your target groups –
- How tech-savvy are they?
- What device do they prefer to use for bidding, mobile, or desktop?
- Do they come from different time zones?
- What is the most preferred time to conduct an auction?
The design of your website and the way you present your auctions matters a lot. An effective design many times compels the users to enter into a site and navigate to the inner pages. Try to make your auction store visually appealing.
Here are some tips to make your site eye catching –
- Use minimum text and set the colour, size, and style of the fonts according to the choice of your target audience
- Create a sharp contrast between the background of your pages and the foreground
- Use high-resolution images but make sure it does not affect the performance of your site
- Describe the rules and regulations of the auctions using simple language
- Add multimedia elements like video or animation to your store to make it more attractive
- Use attractive call-to-action elements and place them in noticeable positions
Adopt strong promotional strategies
No matter how well planned your auction is, if people are not aware of it, it is no use. Promotion is the most important thing when you decide to start a business. Your promotional strategy can make or break the future of your online store.
To increase the popularity of your auction site, here are some of the methods you can use –
From time to time you can keep some special promotions like gift vouchers, prizes, etc to create interest among people. You can also give a discount on your membership fee for some time, to encourage new users to join in
Whenever you schedule an auction, send personalized notifications to your prospects. Everyone loves to get a personal invitation, which is why this method helps to increase the number of bidders. But, there is a limitation to this method. You can use it only for the people who have given you permission and shared their email ids voluntarily.
Social media publicity
Social media is considered to be the most powerful medium today. And, since you conduct online auctions, this is the best platform for you to promote your site. You can place notifications on various sites like Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and others. You can also go for YouTube advertising to spread awareness about your auction store.
Word of mouth publicity
This is a very strong promotional tool and works better than many other methods. If one gets a recommendation from a friend, he trusts it easily and goes for a trial. To use this tool effectively, all you need to do is to satisfy your customers. If they are happy with you, they will naturally refer your name to their peers. It will help you in lead generation.
Expand your reach
Since with a website you can cater to a global audience, try exploring new areas for expansion. You may try new items, target different sets of people, and hold different types of auctions. But be careful, sometimes managing a big venture becomes difficult and it gives rise to many new problems.
Pick up rare items
An easy way to increase traffic to your online auction site is to hold bidding for rare items. This makes you unique and gives you a chance to move much ahead of your competitors. If people know that on your site they can get exclusive items, they will keep visiting regularly. The more bidders you get the better it is for you. It will not just increase your earnings but will make your site popular also.
Go for sponsorship
If yours is a charitable organization and you conduct auctions for fundraising, you may go for sponsorships. If an auction is sponsored by a big brand, it naturally attracts more participants. Sometimes, in this kind of auction, many big players take part and bid for a big amount. This way you can collect more funds which you can use for a social cause. Another advantage of this type of auction is, you can request big corporate houses to sponsor the events. They may take interest as it can be used as a CSR (Corporate Social Responsibility) activity.
In this article, we have shared a few basic but important tips to kick start your auction site and run it successfully. However, the final tip is, plan what you want to achieve in advance and chalk out a robust promotional strategy based on that.