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This is a selection made from among articles on Long Backhoes. For a permanent link to this article, or to bookmark it for future reading, click here.

Consider Heavy Equipment Auctions On Ebay

from: Sydney S. Johnston

Heavy equipment auctions are a fascinating and little known niche on eBay. "Heavy equipment" refers to the machines used for manufacturing, industrial, farm equipment, the food industry, printing, electrical, etc.

There are two kinds of equipment sold - new and used - and successful heavy equipment sellers on eBay fall into two basic categories:

First, they are already in the industry and use eBay as an extra channel for selling their equipment.

Or, smaller sellers will focus on locating and auctioning used and second-hand equipment, usually on a consignment basis. In my early days on eBay, I sold this kind of equipment, locating it in industry publications or in our local newspapers. At no time did I own any of this machinery, but merely sold it for others who were unfamiliar with eBay and online sales and needed another sales outlet.

You will need at least some knowledge about what you're selling. Your audience will mostly professionals and they thoroughly understand what they're buying. If you don't speak their lingo you will lose sales unless your prices are so low that nobody cares what you know.

There are some strong pluses for this kind of auction product. For one thing, all those who look at your listings are potential buyers and thus you will be spared the usual gawkers and freebie-seekers that haunt so many auctions and websites. The average person has no interest whatsoever in this kind of auction and will therefore not waste your time.

If you already sell this kind of equipment, eBay is wonderful! It is much cheaper to sell on eBay, rather than maintain a physical location, so you can undercut other brick and mortar competition.

Here's what you need for success in heavy equipment auctions:

1. You need a good reliable and steady source/supplier of heavy equipment.

2. Your equipment has be stored somewhere. You can't keep an industrial crane or a backhoe in your garage so if you're going to own or lease your equipment, this will be an added expense.

3. You should be prepared for a couple of months without any sales in the beginning. You might make some money quickly, but don't count on it.

4. It helps if you have a reputation. Investing $100,000 in a piece of equipment requires a leap of faith and unless your offering is truly extraordinary chances are most buyers won't want to take a chance on you. Heavy equipment auctions are meant for companies and professionals and placing a bid on the heavy equipment auction of an unknown seller might be a risky decision. If you have feedback from any other area of eBay, it might help.

5. You will need to offer shipping if you want to maximize your profits. You can choose the "pickup only" option but you are certain to lose many potential customers. This doesn't mean that you will have to personally oversee shipping, but you will need to know shipping companies and be able to advise your clients.

If you feel comfortable with this kind of auction, you need to prepare your listing and offer. Pay great attention to these areas:

* You need pictures, pictures and more pictures. Ensure that your pictures are clear and sharp and cover every detail of the equipment you're wishing to sell.

* Detail everything about your equipment. You don't really have to "sell" in these auctions because the potential buyers already knows what he's looking for and it's quite specific. Basically, you're only trying to persuade him to choose your machinery over someone else's and generally there aren't huge numbers for him to choose from at any one time. This is a serious, big-time investment for the buyer and you want him to be impressed with you.

* Offer a pre-purchase inspection, if desired.

* eBay makes it easy to get financing for expensive equipment and you need to cooperate with a prospect by directing him to appropriate financing, if necessary.

* You absolutely must offer some kind of warranty and it should be based on more than just your word. For instance, an escrow service might be appropriate or you might be bonded or a member of an organization that offers such a guarantee.

By knowing the rules of the heavy equipment auction, you might make substantial money from only a handful of auctions.


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