Is Gamification the Next Evolution in Penny Auctions?

Aug 26, 2015

Penny auction websites have become staples in the lives of consumers. Thousands of desirable items from electronics to clothes are placed below value and are placed in an auction. Millions of consumers flock to these penny auctions looking for that special item to acquire for below market cost. Penny auction merchants earn millions in profits due to the consumer quest for bargains. But now that this market has matured, new entrants are looking for the next level in the penny auction market.

Industry experts believe that the next evolution in penny auctions lies in gamification. Websites like Bizulu use gamification in their auctions to engage and excite users, raising the likelihood that they will return even if they don’t win a bid. Gamification is the use of game design techniques and game mechanics outside of a gaming environment. Penny merchants who utilize this method do so by:

1. 5 minute flash sales
2. There is an element of strategy or gamesmanship as one bidder can “blitz” another bidder

Why could gamification work? About 80 percent of “action” occurs in the last 5 to 10 minutes of an auction. So instead of auctions going for days or hours, websites that use gamification would only have 5 to 10 minute auctions, which let time constrained participants see quick results; therefore feeding instant gratification needs. If they don’t win one auction, no matter there is another 5 minute one on the way.

A “blitz” is also used to promote a gaming atmosphere. Blitzes are used to lower the amount of a competing bid. A bidder is given back 5 percent of their bid to counter a competitor’s bid. For example, if a bid is $100, a bidder would get $5 back to use if another person increased the bid in order to “blitz” them.

If you are interested in starting a penny auction business, consider integrating gamification and contact Although the penny auction business is legitimate, many traditional payment processors won’t service your merchant account. Our veteran agents will open your penny auction merchant account today with no penalties and no hassle. Contact us today.

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