Comparing Bidding Websites: How They Work & Which is Best?

5 min readNov 13, 2019

With their fast-paced live auctions and deals on high-end products, bidding websites continue to attract users by the masses.

At first glance, however, online auction websites might seem too good to be true, but are they? Many people are left scratching their heads wondering how in-demand, high-ticket items can be purchased for such low prices.

So how do bidding websites work? What are the differences between popular online auctions used today? And…how can you navigate the world of online bidding websites to maximize overall cost savings and get the best deals on the things you love?

This article will answer these questions and more.

Let’s start with the first type of online bidding platform: penny auctions…

Penny auction websites offer an alternative to free bidding sites

What are Penny Auction Bidding Websites?

Penny auctions are real-time bidding websites based on a pay-to-participate or all-pay model in which every participant buys credits to make a bid.

Each time a new bid is placed, the price per bid increases by one cent and the auction clock is extended by 10 to 20 seconds. If no new bids are placed by the time the clock runs out, the item is sent to the last bidder for the price of his or her final bid.

In other words, the allocation and prices of penny auction bidding websites are determined by the participants. The bidders are also unidentifiable so there’s no unfair preferential treatment or strategic market segmentation.

Penny Auctions vs. Free Bidding Sites

While there are ways to earn free bids on pay-to-participate bidding websites, these penny auction platforms are distinct from free online auctions.

Unlike penny auctions, free bidding sites are typically marketplaces that connect buyers and sellers. While they have their advantages, free online auction sites can be riskier for buyers.

How is this possible?

In short, free bidding marketplaces often provide fewer buyer protections, product guarantees, refund/return peace of mind.

Another distinction is how penny-based and free bidding websites generate revenue. And, more importantly, how they’re able to provide low prices on quality items and luxurious products.

Penny auction websites sell bids to customers, which in turn allows them to offer great deals on products. Free bidding eCommerce platforms typically make money by taking a cut of final sale prices and charging transaction fees.

But there is a noticeable similarity between penny-based and free bidding websites: winning an auction requires patience, perseverance, and responsiveness.

Now that we’ve covered the basics, let’s discuss the pros and cons of popular bidding websites used today.


DealDash is the longest-running penny auction website. They were also the first pay-to-participate auction website to introduce a mobile app for Android and iOS, according to HuffPost.

DealDash is known for their dedicated customer satisfaction team and consistent product quality. They also provide free shipping and a 30-day return policy guarantee as well as a 90 day first purchase money back guarantee.

Another benefit of DealDash is their diversity of inventory. The site features brand-new products ranging from electronics and home goods to jewelry and cars. Active players always have access to DealDash free bids as well with daily returning bidder rewards.

But as a casual bidder, how much does DealDash really cost?

Bid prices vary and you can expect to pay up to 20 cents per bid when buying a bid pack. You can then use those bids to bid on every auction. Whenever someone places a bid in an auction, the final sales price increases by one cent. The final bidder of the auction then has left to pay the final auction price to get their product. So in comparison to other pay-to-participate bidding websites and the regular retail price of inventory items, DealDash is just that: a deal. Especially considering the free shipping.

DealDash also has a range of live auction promotions you can leverage to get the best deal on your bids and cheapest prices on auctioned products.

Their changing discounts and savings opportunities include a “Free Bids Faster” reward for the highest bidder each round, 50% off on final auction prices, and their “Every BidBuddy Counts” bonus that adds to your free bids and “Time as Highest Bidder.”

So how can you win on DealDash?

If you are unsure how to get started, check out DealDash tips and tricks. One recommended bidding strategy entails booking a BidBuddy to automatically place bids for you.

DealDash also features in-demand products on their homepage and a robust search function to save you time (and precious dollars). Based on recent DealDash reviews, these value-added features are invaluable to end-users.


eBay is one of the largest free auction sites where all sorts of items are bought and sold everyday. You can bid on everything from cars and vintage goods to food items and trinkets on the open marketplace.

But because eBay is a free bidding website and not a penny auction site, the quality of products, shipping fees, and product expenses are determined by the seller. As such, it’s up to buyers to vet sellers and their products. eBay also has their own set of seller fees, which is the norm for free eCommerce auctions.

There’s no doubt that free bidding sites like eBay have their upsides, mostly associated to broad choice of products, but they also require buyers and sellers to exercise diligence.


uBid is another free bidding website.

However, uBid is unique in that it features vacation and travel auctions as well as a Deal of the Day. As usual with these kind of services, you pay for a processing fee for all travel purchases at the end of the auction.

In contrast to penny-based bidding websites like DealDash, uBid auction items are not guaranteed new. Most of their products are excess inventory and refurbished items, discount coupons or travel auctions.

uBid terms and conditions page also states that the company reserves the right to set minimum bids on all items so this is indeed a unique website when compared to eBay or DealDash but maybe something worth testing out too.

Navigating Bidding Websites in the Knowledge Age

Today you can find just about anything online including bidding strategies and competitive insight.

Here are some noteworthy tips from past experiences and user recommendations on how to maximize your savings and get the best deal on bidding websites:

1. Look for auctions that don’t have a ton of active bidders.

2. Consider looking into the bidding history of your competition so you can bid against folks who are likely to give up before you.

3. If you really want to take home an auction item, don’t be afraid to keep on bidding in penny auctions such as DealDash. With the Buy It Now option, you will get all your bids back if you decide to buy the auctioned item for the list price and you can then use those in other auctions.

All information presented in this post are based on sources available on the internet. The article is published by DealDash.




This is the blog by the best reviewed online auction site Deal Dash. Find tips on bidding, promos and bonus codes, auction strategy, and how to earn free bids.