Ebay offers the option of running an auction where bids can only be placed by pre-approved bidders. In order for bidders to qualify to bid, they must contact the seller and ask to be placed on the approved list. It is then upto the seller to allow allow this.
Normally, Pre-Approved auctions are used for high value items - or items which are normally targeted by scammers. Scammers looking to target eBay sellers nearly always go for high value items, by selling who use the Buy It Now format. By using a pre-approving format, bidders will not be able to use the Buy It Now button until they have been checked out & approved by the seller.
The disadvantage of using Pre-Approved auctions, is that a small majority of genuine members may be put out bidding, having to go to the extra effort of contacting you and asking to be approved.
However, the most enterprising sellers take advantage of pre-approved auctions to promote their enterprises away from ebay. This is not within eBay rules, but can be a very efficient way of marketing on ebay.
Basically, a seller will list for example a “Portable Playstation" at a low price. The Seller will not be selling a playstation or may not even own one, however eBay will hook them up with buyers looking to purchase such an item, who contact the seller though the contact form asking to be pre-approved.
The Seller in this instance will normally be able to direct buyers to alternative venues offering identical items - normally in an answer similar to “the one listed has been sold, but if you visit www.mysite.com you can see an similar model". You should now see how efficient pre-approved auctions can be.
The website where the seller is driving traffic to, can be an affiliate website - where the seller earns a commission if a sale is made, or their own site where they will make a nice profit on any item sold. It really doesn't matter - As long as buyers looking for the item continue to contact the seller they can continue to promote their website using the power & targeted audience of eBay.
Pre-approved auctions, allow you to list an item on ebay for the full length of an auction - whether 1,3,5,7 or 10 days knowing that you will not receive a single bid and will not be obliged to sell the item, but will continue to receive exposure for your item and website though eBay.
Written by Mark Kenny. Join http://www.AuctionCUT.com - the online auctions and ebay forum. Come and discuss your eBay or online auction goals, with Mark and other members. AuctionCUT offers adrevenue sharing for members and an exclusive dropshipping report.