4 Top Tips for a Successful Silent Auction

A silent auction is an event where bidding takes place by using traditional techniques, such as paper bidding or a modern one like online bidding. With their nature, without an auctioneer present, its success should rely on other techniques, keeping the auction engaging, profitable and successful. 

A silent auction during COVID pandemic is a more suitable format to raise funds. But how do you keep your crowd interested? What kind of auctions should you set for bidding?

Let’s find out.

How Do I Make the Most Money in a Silent Auction?

When it comes to gaining high revenues in silent auctions, strategy is the key to doing it. With the right strategies, you can streamline your event hosting, thereby enjoying profit returns.

Here are some strategies to make the most money when organising a silent auction.

  • Choose the Most Competitive and Selling Items

One strategy to raise money is to procure the perfect items for your guests. There are indeed so many items to choose from, but knowing what your donors want will drive the most bids. 

What can you do? Organise a procurement committee, use your donor base and analyse the previous silent auction events. In this way, you can make assumptions about which items are most appealing and which ones did not perform so well. 

  • Choose the Right Bidding Style

Selecting the type of bidding style for your silent auction is essential to your success. Take time to decide which bidding method would best suit your organisation and your supporters. 

  • Ballot Bidding

Paper or ballot bidding is a traditional method that uses a silent auction template allowing the organisers to track the bids and revenue during the event. Once the auction closes, the bid sheets are collected, and the items will go to the highest bidders.

  • Electronic Bidding

Another advantageous method is electronic bidding, which greatly simplifies your bidding execution and management. During the event, your sponsors will see the list of the items as showcased on their gadgets. The gadgets will act as the bidding platform and enable the guests to bid. 

One software that will help your silent auction to reach high revenues is Helping Hand’s Electronic Silent Auction platform powered by industry leader GiveSmart. With Helping Hand Group, you can guarantee exceptional services, such as registration, attendance tracking, donor management, data insights and more.

  • Use Online Event Sites

It’s important to advertise your silent auction event and this involves using your website and online platforms. Apart from that, it’s also crucial to advertise your bidding items. This is because when guests see how valuable your items are, they would be motivated to attend.

Once again, using the Electronic Silent Auction software, you can set up an event site online and use it as a digital auction catalogue. 

  • Actively Engage With Your Guests

A silent auction does not use an auctioneer to guide the bidders, so it is important to engage with your donors. One way to do this is to enlist the help of an emcee to host your event. Another technique is to use your electronic bidding software to send notifications through text messages during the event. You can send reminders on what items or how much time is left. With this, you can keep your guests focused on the auction.

What Sells Best at Silent Auctions?

Several silent auction items sell best, but you need to consider your guests before procuring them. Are they seniors? Professional singles? Academics? Corporate? Doing so will give you a heads up on what items to procure.

  • Travel

Travel items are popular and allow your guests to create memories. This can include weekend getaways, all-inclusive trips, hotel stays, exotic trips and airline tickets.

  • Memorabilia and Sports Tickets

Sport-related items also perform well in silent auctions. However, you should consider where your guests live because you may need your sports items to relate to your audience’s home team. You can procure game tickets, signed memorabilia or golf outings.

  • Unique Dining Experience

A unique dining experience at a top restaurant is also a unique and fun addition to your bid items. 

  • Creative Artwork

Procuring creative artwork from major artists is also one of the many silent auction ideas during COVID. However, you can be creative to include artworks from your local artists, too. 

  • Luxury Vacation Rentals

Luxury vacations, such as Christmas holiday adventures and resort destinations, are exciting items to add to your collection.

  • Fun Outing

Fun outings like a spa day, local brewery tours, hot air balloon rides, sunset or Australian harbour cruises provide opportunities for bidders to try something new. 

How Much Can You Make From a Silent Auction?

Unsurprisingly, hosting a silent auction event is profitable, practical and an effective fundraising strategy. And as a rule of thumb, a silent auction will result in 50% to 65% of their fair market value.

However, if you want to maximise revenues, there’s no better way to do it than to seek the help of seasoned professionals to run your event. 

Helping Hand Group Auction Services: Lending You a Helping Hand

At Helping Hand Group, we offer technical and social expertise to make your event a success. 

If you want to conduct a silent auction with electronic bidding and ballot bidding, we can give you the most suitable solution. Contact us today, and our team of specialists will assist you with your enquiries.