Popular Mobile Bidding Challenges
While mobile bidding has become a new hit among tech aware non-profits, many (if not most) charity auctions still rely on silent auction paper bid sheets. There are a lot of reasons for this which is why we have built the following infographic to highlight the reasons we hear. Our goal at ClickBid is to build a silent auction event experience that raises more money and reduces the stress of the organization. Many times, it’s not clear how we accomplish the second part of that goal. Below we outline the 5 biggest challenges we’ve seen when considering mobile bidding vs traditional paper auctions.
1. Our Crowd is Older and Not Tech Savvy
74% of 50-65 year olds have a smartphone*. That means 3 out of 4 of your older audience can benefit from mobile bidding. What about the rest? What we’ve found is that those who do not have a smartphone don’t want one. The solution here is to allow a concierge volunteer to bid with the guest and setup “max bidding”. This means that a bid is placed at the max amount the guest is willing to pay and the system bids up to that amount automatically. This ensures that a bidder won’t pay more than they wish but they will not lose out either. Best of all, it’s automated.
2. Paper Bidding is Free and Mobile Bidding is Not
Mobile bidding pays for itself. You can typically expect a 30% bump in silent auction totals when using mobile bidding. ClickBid has established their pricing to fit comfortably inside your gains so that our software pays for itself and then some. The other value that can be overlooked is the added value of simplifying your management. Since all your data is electronic, you no longer need to calculate totals, make receipts, etc. Everything is inside an admin that controls and organizes your data. This makes check-in, check-out and reconciliation a snap. We’ve had event after event tell us “last year was a disaster at check-out! This year, things are going soooo smoothly.”
3. Our Venue May Not Have Good WiFi
Over the past 2 years, I have made numerous calls to venues asking about WiFi capabilities. I can’t remember the last venue that told me they didn’t have good WiFi. That doesn’t mean however that all WiFi is great WiFi. However, to help reduce the needs of venue provided WiFi, our mobile bidding is lightweight and speed conscious. The bandwidth needs compare to checking your email. In fact, it typically means that most guests will use cellular data instead of jumping on WiFi. You will typically only need a few connections for check-in and check-out; easily managed by a mobile hotspot.
4. The System Might Crash and Ruin our Event
The cloud hosts many mission critical systems. From Facebook to QuickBooks to online banking, companies rely on and require constant uptime. To help realistically accomplish this, there are ways to build redundancy and “failover” to your applications. Any mobile bidding company worth their salt can demonstrate their redundancy and contingency plans.
5. Mobile Bidding Just Isn’t Worth It
For us, 15 years of mobile bidding can prove that it is totally worth it. From smiling guests to relaxed event coordinators to increased revenue, this is one area of your event that more than pays for itself.
Statistics from: http://www.pewinternet.org/fact-sheet/mobile/