“Selling at $1,500 with me, from the book, is there any advance?” says the auctioneer.
A bid from the “book” or “desk” refers to a competitive bid left in advance of the auction to be executed by the auctioneer. Also called absentee bids, proxy bids or left bids, these types of bids have long been an important part of live auctions.
While nothing beats the exciting and fast-paced atmosphere of an auction, attending isn’t always possible or practical. Live 3,000 miles away? Flying in to bid at an auction in Massachusetts might not be feasible. Depressed about the recent catastrophic collapse of the Red Sox? We understand. Or maybe you’re just plain old busy with family responsibilities. Life happens! Not surprisingly, many buyers also appreciate the anonymity that absentee bidding brings.
Whatever your reason for not attending in person, know that just because you’re not sitting in the saleroom doesn’t mean you can’t participate. And now, it’s easier than ever to leave your absentee bids online.
I am still working to convince some long-time and frequent bidders that they should try the do-it-yourself approach to absentee bids. Calling in to relay a long list of lots and bid prices while eating dinner or watching TV is not necessarily the best idea. When you enter your bids online through the auction house website, you’re in control and can see your bids right in front of you. Here are some other reasons to try absentee bidding online.
To get started with absentee bidding online with Skinner, you will be asked to log-in or register on our website.
1. No more worrying about business hours
The Skinner website is open 24/7. As soon as the auction catalogue goes live, and at any time of day or night that is convenient to you, you can leave absentee bids. Keep in mind that bidding shuts off one hour before the start of each auction session. (If it’s a multi-day sale, then bidding will still be available on day 1 for future sessions).
2. Have your questions answered while you browse
As you view individual lots, you can easily email department specialists for additional information, track lots or place bids.
3. Leave multiple bids with ease
The bid sheet lets you see the whole catalogue. You can browse through, check off multiple bids, and enter prices all from one form. If you prefer, you can also bid one lot at a time. You will receive a confirmation email when your absentee bids are received in our system and another when they’ve been processed for the auction.
4. Follow the auction as if you were there
When you’re logged in to the Skinner website, you can click “Search Catalogues” at the top of the page to browse upcoming auction catalogues, search catalogue listings, or view a list of your current bids and tracked lots. All lots that you have either bid on or marked to track will show up in this list, and will be updated with prices realized after the auction.
5. When you win, you’ll be the first to know!
As a registered member of the Skinner website, you will receive email notification of your successful bids after the auction has concluded. From there you can start enjoying your treasures!
For more information on absentee bidding, visit www.skinnerinc.com.
Register now and you’re ready to begin bidding. And, good luck at the auction!
Active collector, dealer of Alaskan native art…most interested in baleen baskets-Eskimo ivory carvings-native knives- walrus ivory artifacts..Owner of Corrington’s Alaskan Ivory store and museum in Skagway Alaska.Free and open to the public for 41 years and running. Dennis Corrington -76 Iditarod finisher