10 April, 2018

Case study: All Auction Houses Are Not the Same

Read time 6-7 mins

If you ever thought that all auction houses were the same then this article will help to explain how they are each different. It’s important to understand these differences if you bid or sell on different auction houses.

William George and Co and eBay are both leading Online houses. However, there are fundamental differences between the two.

1) Insertion Fees

eBay vendors are given a monthly allocation of 20 items which can be listed for free. After those 20 items have been exhausted, each additional item will incur a £0.35p insertion charge. This fee can impact the potential earnings for vendors, especially those who sell a lot of items.

Here at William George and Co, we do not charge insertion fees and let our vendors list as many items as they want which is completely free of charge. 

2) Final Value Fee

eBay charges its vendors a fee for the final sale price of the item. This final value fee can be as much as £250 for each item.

Here at William George, our vendors are not charged for the final sale price of their item. They enjoy 100% of the hammer price.

3) Paying Sellers Direct

eBay's winning bidders must pay the seller directly within 3 days of winning their item. The vendor also defines the payment methods they accept which can cause problems if you do not have multiple ways to pay.

Here at William George and Co, we hold all payments until we are satisfied the buyer has collected their item or it's been dispatched.

4) Sniping

Online bidders have been subject to being sniped. This is where towards the end of a lot closing, another bidder comes in with a higher bid and ultimately wins the item. This has created negative experiences for bidders on platforms such as eBay and other auction houses.

Here at William George & Co, the end times of our lots will extend if a bid is placed within the final 10 minutes of a lot closing. This is to stimulate an "in the room" experience. 

5) Optional Listing Fees

Optional listing fees are add-ons which the vendor can apply to their auction.

  • Reserve Price Fee

eBay vendors are charged a fee for listings a reserve price. The lowest reserve price which can be set is £50. The fee is 4% of the reserve price or a cap of £150 per item.

Here at William George and Co, we do not charge fees for reserves placed on items. Our vendors can be assured that they can list as many reserves and items free of charge.

  • Buy it now Fee

eBay charges a ‘Buy it Now’ fee where items listed in an auction-style listing can be purchased before the end of that auction. The rate is £0.50p per item listed as ‘Buy it Now’.

William George & Co. do not have this feature available in our auctions and our bidders can continue to bid on items until the close of auction.

  • Gallery Plus Fee

For larger images, eBay charges its vendors to include them in their lots.

Here at William George and Co, we recognise that our bidders need to bid with confidence and we enable our vendors to upload multiple images to give bidders the opportunity to see the lot from various perspectives for free.

  • Membership Fee

Vendors with large volumes of items on eBay are advised to subscribe to eBay for £19 a month.

Here at William George and Co, our vendors can list as many items as they want and not incur any subscription fees to find value.

Final Words

Not all auction houses are the same. It’s important that vendors and bidders are aware of the terms and conditions involved in each online selling platform. If you have any further questions or enquiries, then you can email us at [email protected]

Have you considered selling with us? Our vendors are able to list for free and keep 100% of the hammer. Visit our selling page for more info!

Online Showdown: ebay vs William George & Co.
Online Showdown: ebay vs William George & Co.
Online Showdown: ebay vs William George & Co.