BiddingForGood’s Top 5 Hottest Items
In a recent blog post, Ellen McCullough wrote about how we use our analytics to advise our clients on how to make the most of their silent auctions. We’ve run over 6,700 auctions and have a lot of knowledge to share.
We are always interested in learning which categories perform best in online auctions and we frequently get asked which specific items do best. To help further answer this question, I have pulled the top 5 grossing items and how much they sold for. I’ve included reasons why they performed well so you can incorporate similar items for your own auction success.
1. Unique experiences with celebrities are auction gold! Harrison Ford "Experience" - Lunch and a Flight with Harrison Ford- Sold for $50,200
“The winning bidder and a guest will enjoy a spectacular flight around the LA Basin with famed actor and pilot Harrison Ford.”
The excitement bidders feel when bidding on beloved celebrity items is unparalleled. These types of items keep bidders returning to our site to eagerly look for their next once in a lifetime opportunity. Where else could they find a chance to enjoy a flight with Harrison Ford and have lunch with him afterwards? Just think, this winner bidder could find out from the man himself which Indiana Jones movie he thought was the best and maybe even settle a few pressing Star Wars questions.
2. Know your supporters! LIVE - ORTHOPHOS XG 3D -Sold for $59,000
“The ORTHOPHOS XG 3D combines all the advantages of 2D and 3D into one fantastic new X-RAY imaging solution.”
This X-RAY machine would not be of interest to most bidders. However, The American Association of Endodontists Foundation kept their supporters in mind when choosing their item catalog. They understood that their bidding community would have a real need for this type of item and would consider it an investment. Remember, when you put together your catalog, your supporters will be doing most of the bidding.
3. Choose items with long term value! USA TODAY- Sold for $31,500
“One full-page, black-and-white advertisement (Monday-Thursday) in the national edition of USA TODAY reaching more than 3.2 million readers."
Any business owner would leap at the chance to have that kind of advertising space. This is primetime ad space that would normally cost a business $125,600. Bidders could get a killer deal and help an organization with a substantial contribution.
4. Sports fans are competitive! VIP Cowboys Game Experience- Sold for $28,500
“This is THE America's Team VIP experience. Let's face it, the Cowboys are like no other team out there.”
There’s a reason sports tickets often inspire bidding wars. Not only do these bidders want their team to win, they what to win too! This Dallas Cowboys experience gave bidders a chance at 18 VIP seats in a gorgeous luxury booth, catered meals, 5 parking passes, and 18 sideline passes! The winner would also get to give 17 other Cowboys fans a truly thrilling experience. With sideline passes, they would get to be close to the field with the Press and Dallas Cowboy cheerleaders! There’s nothing like taking in a game, played by your favorite team, in killer seats, with friends and family by your side.
5. Everyone needs to get a way! Gulfstream 4 SP Private Jet Travel- Sold for $26,000
“Win 6 hours of round-trip private jet air travel to a destination of your choice for up to 14 passengers or VIP travel for a smaller group.”
Travel has always been one of our most popular categories, and it’s easy to understand why. There are a million reasons not to take a vacation and some of us need an extra nudge to actually take one. Giving to a great cause AND getting to take a private jet with your friends and family is like a dream! It’s no surprise that these bidders jumped at the chance.
Be sure to keep these lessons in mind as you work on item solicitation to build your catalog. Share the above items with your auction team and ask for their ideas on how to build upon these successes. With the right amount of creativity, persistence, and even a little luck, next year one of your items could be on our list of highest grossing items!