Buying at our online auctions: Top 5 questions and answers

More than ever before, online auctions are a popular method of buying and selling heavy equipment and trucks. We see more and more people are joining our online auctions, so we decided to put together a few questions and answers about Timed auctions. We added some extra tips to help you get even more out of your auction experience.

More than ever before, online auctions are a popular method of buying and selling heavy equipment and trucks. Especially since the COVID-19 pandemic started in March 2020, demand for online services in our industry increased dramatically. At Ritchie Bros., all equipment auctions switched entirely to online and saw record numbers of participants joining.
In Europe and the Middle East, Ritchie Bros. has multiple sites where auctions are held as Timed Auctions – an online bidding system that makes it super easy to place bids and buy what you need. Anyone can easily join the auctions from anywhere in the world!
We see more and more people are joining our online auctions, so we decided to put together a few questions and answers about Timed auctions. We added some extra tips to help you get even more out of your auction experience. Are you ready? Here we go!

What is a Timed Auction, and how does it work?

A Ritchie Bros.' Timed Auction is an easy-to-use auction system. It is entirely taking place online without an auctioneer. The auction is open for several days, and items close at staggered times on the last day(s). You can join the auctions on your computer, phone, or tablet, from your office, home, or anywhere you have an internet connection. After you've found one or more items you're interested in, you can register for the auction and start placing bids several days before the closing time.
! Tip: You can find the closing date and time of each item on our website. Bid early to avoid missing a good deal and stay up to date on the item's bidding activity.

What is an Unreserved Auction?

Ritchie Bros. auctions are unreserved. This means there are no minimum bids or reserve prices, and items will always sell on auction day to the highest bidder. Sellers are forbidden from bidding on their own items. There is no price manipulation, so only the bidders set the price - a fair and transparent process!

How do I register for the online auction?

You've found one or more items on our website you'd like to buy. To start bidding at our auctions, you need to create a free Ritchie Bros. account and register for the auction in which the item is sold. With the 'Register to bid online' button, you can sign up for the auction of choice. In some cases, you may need to provide a refundable deposit. You receive a confirmation via email once you are good to go.
! Tip: Registering for our auctions is an easy and fast process, but should you get stuck or have any questions, there's always a team of people here that are here to support.

What is bidding like? Do I need to be online all day?

Placing bids in our Timed Auctions is fun and exciting! You placed bids, and you're in the race with other bidders. Will you win the item for a good price? When you enter Timed Auctions, you can follow all items' activity and see bids come in. You can easily find your items of interest by filtering by year, make, model, lot number, and much more. In the auction interface, you see when items are closing, how much time is left, and what the current high bid is.

! Tip: Get more out of the auction using Quick Bid and Maximum Bid. With Quick Bid, you don't have to type in a bid amount manually, but you place a bid directly at the next highest increment. The Maximum Bid option allows you to insert the maximum amount you are willing to bid on the item. The system will bid for you, keeping you in the lead at the lowest possible bid - until your maximum amount is reached. Other bidders do not see your Maximum Bid; the system will only raise your bid if someone outbids you. A great feature if you are bidding on multiple items in the auction!

Can I inspect items before I bid?

Before you start placing bids, you want to make sure you know what you are buying! There are two ways to do this. First of all, there is a lot of information available on our website. Our local Operations teams provide detailed inspection information for all auction items we sell. Each item is listed on our website with dozens of photos and descriptions. A great place to start your inspection! For added confidence, you can also visit the auction viewing days, where you can inspect a machine in person in our auction yard. All items sold at the auction are sold “as is, where is” so we always recommend customers inspecting the machines themselves if possible. Finally, if you need special assistance or advice, you can contact the local auction site, and we'll be happy to help.

Join our Online Auctions

Our online auctions are easy, fun, and exciting to join. Start with finding items you're interested in and creating a free Ritchie Bros. account. First time joining our auctions? Don't worry – you'll be an auction Pro in no-time!