Senior Client Account Manager, EMEA
Whether your auction house is in full lockdown or you are semi-operational, check out Bidpath’s key steps to keeping your business moving throughout the pandemic and beyond.
Step 1- Communication
Keeping in touch with vendors and bidders is really important at this time. You may have closed your auction venue but this doesn’t mean you have to shut down your business.
Keep all lines of remote communication open. It will make life easier at the other end. No one wants a ‘remember me’ email, they want you to have been there throughout the journey.
It’s important to let your customers know which online channels you’ll be updating so that they can start following you on Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn etc. If you need help with posting on social media, either reach out to us for help or alternatively there are loads of useful tutorials online.
Step 2- Moving to Online Auctions
Now would be a great time to explore other selling formats that are already available in you Bidpath private label installation;
Timed – Often used for unsold lots, but a great auction format for smaller lots that don’t require so much viewing or upselling from an auctioneer. Stagger the lots finishing times so that people can bid stress-free!
Hybrid – A timed auction with a personal touch. Keep the immersive experience going with live audio and video broadcasted from wherever you are, but no need to operate or intervene if you don’t want to.
Tender – We saw a resurgence of this lesser-used auction format earlier in the year and have seen great online results come from it. An ideal set-up for allowing bidders to bid at home in their own time with very little input required from you.
Buy Now – Another e-commerce solution that is already available in SAM. Great for smaller lots and easy to set up. Set a price and let the bidders browse from home.
Don’t fret about trying to get a catalogue of 1000 lots together. These auctions could be 10-100 lots long. It keeps content on your website and gives your customers something to browse whilst at home in lockdown.
Step 3- To-Do Lists
Finish the to-do list that always gets ignored. Crack on with all those jobs that get cast aside week on week due to the busy lives we are all so used to living.
Catalogues – Do you have past sales that need to be uploaded? Realised prices that were never updated?
Training – Do you want more staff training up on how to operate, or guides on how to use particular aspects of the software?
Website – Have you been meaning to update the ‘news’ section of your website or create a ‘How to bid online’ page?
Your Bidpath Platform – Are there changes that you want making to the layout of your Bidpath platform? Have you had any ideas you’ve been meaning to discuss with us but never got around to it? Do you want a payment gateway integration?
Now is the time to do all these things that get ignored day-to-day!
Step 4- Prepare to Re-open
It might seem weeks away at this stage, but it will happen. Isolation will end and life will continue. Prepare now so that you are ready when the time comes…
Consign now, sell later – Get ready to consign lots – people have been sat at home clearing out their lofts. They’ll need somewhere to sell. How about offering FaceTime valuations?
Branding – Have you been meaning to brand your online platform, create signage for the rostrum and auction venue?
Mailing List – Do you have bidders that are not on your mailing list? Get it updated! Import them all into a marketing tool such as Mailchimp so that your database is up to date when the time comes to announce your auctions!
Marketing – Plan your email marketing blasts. Promote your own online bidding service. Highlight the money bidders can save by bidding direct. Get your social media posts ready for your re-opening! You’re going to be busy when it happens so get ahead of the game and do all the prep work now.
Calendar – Re-schedule your auction dates. Do you have catalogues that were ready to go? Get them back online with their new dates.
Don’t panic! Bidpath is here to help you make the most of this downtime and help you make a strong come back at the other end. Now more than ever it is important to look after your brand and your bidders!
We are all in this together and as always, the Bidpath team are always here to support you, we are only a phone call away!