I like to track collectible auctions on eBay but when items show up that I want to bid on, I like to bid late, not early in the process. Is there an easy way to keep track of live auctions without bidding?
I didn’t hear the word “snipe” in your question, so that’s good, because that’s my usual experience with people who like to bid late: they “snipe” the auction by putting in a bid at the very last minute so that no-one else bidding has the chance to up their own bid and potential win the auction. Certainly within the terms of service on eBay, but a somewhat controversial strategy nonetheless.
Lots of people like to track specific categories, items or collectibles without wanting to become snipers, though, so the good news is that eBay has a very nice feature available for you as a bidder called the Watch List. Add an auction to the list and you’ll be able to check on its status any time you want without every having to place a bid on it. The downside, if any, is that the seller can see how many people are watching a particular auction (though not individual IDs), so it’s not completely stealthy.
It’s also really easy to work with the Watch List. Let’s have a look!
To start out, simply search on eBay. I’ll do so by searching for microsoft band xl:
Lots to see in this search result, but notice particularly the green + Follow this search.
Move your cursor over it and you’ll get an explanation:
Very useful feature and if you follow a specific item, category or collectible, being able to do a few very specific searches then “follow” them is terrific: you’ll get email alerts of new items as they are listed.
Click through on a specific auction and look closely at the box where you’d enter your bid:
There it is, the subtle Add to watch list.
Click on it and it’ll simply change to Watching:
Confusingly, this isn’t clickable to your watch list. Click on it in an auction listing and it simply removes that particular auction from your list.
To get to your Watch List, you’ll need to use the main eBay account menu:
Once you’ve chosen “Watch list”, it takes over your entire window with lots of great information:
On the top it shows the auction or auctions being tracked – sorted by ending date and time – and below is a feature I really like: “More like your watched item.” That can be a very nice discovery tool if you explore it!
Finally, if you decide you don’t want to follow one or more auctions, simply click on the check box adjacent, and choose “Delete”:
Hope that helps you out with your eBay adventures!