Why Silent Auctions Fail Miserably

Want to increase your silent auction yields?  Remember this little tip.  Each item you place on that silent table will only appeal to a VERY small percentage of your bidders.  Need proof?  Take a look at last years bid sheets.  Pick a few random bid numbers and see how many items they bid on.  Not how many they won, but how many items they bid on during the night.  Simply put, how often did they say, "Hey, I wouldn't mind owning this".  My experience shows the average person will bid on 3-5% of available items. That's only 6 items, in a silent auction with 150 items!  Fortunately peoples tastes and priorities are different, so most everything is likely to sell.  

The point is this.  If the average person is going to find 6 things they feel are worth bidding on, how many items are you making them sort through to find those 6 items?  

Yes, this is a yet another plea to those of you with overly large and cluttered silent auctions.  Stop setting your silent auction up for failure.  There's no upside to presenting a giant, time sucking, money losing maze of confusion to your donors.

If your guests are made to feel like donating to your org, by way of bidding, was tedious, confusing or otherwise more difficult than one would expect, they start to experience donor fatigue almost immediately.

The ubiquity of online "Click to Donate" and mobile "Text to Donate" approaches are based on one simple concept.  Make it easy.