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Contents

General Concepts

What is Balkan.Auction?

The brief answer to that question is: a place where you can sell and buy EVERYTHING without intermediaries.

No special skills are required. Every registered user can start auctions of any goods including used and collectible items. Buyers have the opportunity to choose the most acceptable among many proposals. Items which are for sale can be offered at an auction or by а direct selling at a fixed price.

Welcome to the world of Balkan.Auction!

Standard Auction

It is an auction sale type in which bidding is realized only when there are more than one bidders. Standard Auctions can have a Reserve Price and Buy-It-Now Price.

Fixed Price Items + Offers

It is a type of selling at a fixed price. Bidding is impossible.

There is an option Accept Offers available for that way of selling, i. e. every seller can activate the option which allows buyers to offer a lower price than the visualized one.

Here is an example of how Accept Offers option works:
Seller X1 starts an auction at a fixed price of 100 €.
Potential Buyer X2 who likes the item but does not accept the price makes an offer of 60 €.
At that moment, the seller can choose one of the following options:
  • Accept the offer of 60 €. In this case, the auction ends immediately and user X2 is the winner.
  • Decline the offer.
  • Respond with a counteroffer which must be within 60 – 100 € (in this case it might be 80 €). It means that the seller is prone to decrease the price, but the minimum possible price for realizing a deal is 80 €. At that moment, user X2 has two options - to accept or reject the counteroffer of 80 €.

Other potential buyers who can make offers to the seller at the same time can be also included in the example. Eventually, accepting one of the many offers will cancel all others and ends the auction.
You should know that all the offers have 48 hours expiry.

Finally, if user X5 visits that auction and uses the button BUY IT NOW for 100 € while all the potential buyers exchange offers and counteroffers with the seller, all the offers and counteroffers are canceled, and X5 is the winner.

Reserve Price

It is the lowest price the seller is willing to accept for an item. If the seller has activated that option and the bidding ends at a price lower than the reserve price, the auction ends without a deal. Reserve Price is a hidden price which is known only by the seller. The buyer can only see it if the current price has reached the reserve price.

Buy It Now Price

It is a price at which the seller accepts an offer without bidding. If the buyer uses that option, the auction ends right away.

Protected (local) Delivery

Every auction in which the seller guarantees a local delivery by a courier service and the obligatory "Check Before Pay" option receives a label PROTECTED DELIVERY.


Rating

After each transaction Sellers and Buyers can leave feedback about each other.
The rating is calculated as the positive feedback is counted +1, and the negative feedback is counted -1.
Feedbacks from one and the same user is counted only once.
The feedback rating score of every user is additionally indicated by a rating tag (star). The colours are:

rating
mark
0 - 9
none
10 - 49
50 - 99
100 - 249
250 - 499
500 - 749
750 - 999
1000 - 2499
2500 - 4999
5000 - 9999
over 9999

Starting an Auction

Starting an Auction

Choose the most appropriate and correct title for your item within 60 symbols. The words in the title are selected in almost all the search options, so the easy approach to your auction fully depends on what is written in its title.

Description

Don’t forget – the buyer cannot touch and see your item in real. The required information about it must be included in the description. The site allows entering HTML code.

Category Choice

Choose the most appropriate category for your item. If you hesitate, you can review beforehand the categories in which auctions of similar items are started.
The incorrectly chosen category leads to decreasing the number of visits in your auction and it will lessen the chances for a deal.

Item Specifics

If there is Add Item Specifics, then complete them as correctly as possible. They make it easy for potential buyers to find your item.
Item specifics (Size, Condition, Colour, …) are different in each category and not completing them will definitely reduce the traffic towards your auction.

Images

You can upload up to 13 images (1 main + 12 additional).
Maximum size of each of the image - 10 MB;
Acceptable formats – jpg, gif, png
The main image will be used to present the auction in all the lists.
An option of inserting a watermark with the user’s name on every image is available.

Buy-It-Now + Reserve Price

Buy-It-Now gives the potential buyers the opportunity to purchase your item right away.
At a Standard Auction, if a buyer starts a bidding at the starting price, the Buy-It-Now price is hidden and the auction continues with bidding. If the auction also has a Reserve Price, the Buy-It-Now option is shown until the Reserve Price is met.

At a Fixed Price Item selling, the Starting Price option and the Reserve Price option are not accessible.

Scheduled Start Time

You can select the date you want your auction to start in the future (up to 30 days).

Advertising Options

If you want to increase the number of the visits at an auction and the opportunity for a deal, you can take advantage of the paid advertising options:
  • Homepage Top
  • Category Top
  • Highlighted
  • Bold

By selecting at least one of the first two options, your auction will be listed twice in the search results. The visualization will be a fact in both the normal/standard list of results and the section/slide Top Auctions (* the slide is limited – only the first 80 auctions are visualized according to the chosen by the user feature. The list of all top results is available through the link View All).

Note that even one Top Auction increases the chances for selling of all your auctions.

You have the opportunity to add advertising options up to 6 hours before the end of an auction even if there are bids.
The prices of the advertising options are 50% off when there are less than 3 days.
Adding advertising options is possible either through a link on the page of the auction

or by Active auctions

Restrictive Options

Restrictive option I: This option removes the section Public Questions i. e. by selecting it you can restrict public questions and comments on your auction.
Restrictive option II: This option bans the participation in the auction and any contact with the seller (public and not public) of users with low rating (under 6).

Those two options are available only for sellers with rating of 10 and up, i. e. for reliable and trustworthy users.

Bidding, Sales

Bidding

Enter the highest amount you are willing to pay and the system will bid automatically till it is reached. Your price remains hidden for the other users (except at an auction with Reserve Price not met). You can correct your maximum amount again by placing a higher amount.
Keep in mind, each automatic bidding is started in the very moment when another bidder enters the bidding. Automatic bidding will always keep you at the position of being the highest bidder with the minimum admissible increment till the other bidder is outbid or enters a higher amount than yours.
Example 1: If the starting price of an auction is 1 €, you start the bidding with 10 €. In this case, you become the highest bidder with current price of 1 €. If another bidder eventually enters 4.20 €, then you will automatically maintain the highest position with 4.30 €. If later a third user enters 10 € – you will still remain ahead with 10 € because you have placed that amount first.
Example 2: You enter the bidding with 10 € at an auction with Starting Price of 1 € and Reserve Price of 15 €. You remain ahead with 10 € but the Reserve price is still not met and you decide to bid again – this time with 20 €. Then you become the highest bidder with 15 € and if other users intend to outbid you, they have to enter a higher amount than 20 €.

The bidding increment is fixed but it has different value for the different price ranges:
  from 0.01 tо 0.99 € - 0.05 €;
  from 1.00 tо 9.99 € - 0.10 €;
  from 10.00 tо 99.99 € - 0.50 €;
  from 100.00 tо 499.99 € - 1.00 €;
  from 500.00 tо 999.99 € - 5.00 €;
  from 1000.00 tо 4999.99 € - 10.00 €;
  from 5000.00 tо 9999.99 € - 50.00 €;
  from 10000.00 tо 49999.99 € - 100.00 €;
  from 50000.00 tо 249999.99 € - 500.00 €;
  above 250000 € - 1000.00 €

At every Standard Auction with open bids, the user who has entered the highest amount is the winner. In case the difference between the amounts entered by the winner and by the second bidder in the list is larger than the bidding increment, the final auction price is formed by the second bidder’s amount plus the increment. Users are ranked in descending order of the amounts entered by them.
Example 3: A user starts a bidding with 20 € at an auction with a starting price of 1 €. Eventually, you enter an amount of 100 € and if there are no other bids till the end of the auction, you become the winner with a price of 20.50 €.

Reserve Price

At a Standard Auction with Reserve Price, if the bid price is lower than the reserve price, the auction ends without a deal.
The Reserve Price is hidden and it is known only by the seller. The buyer can see it only if the current price has met the Reserve price.

Buy-It-Now

If the buyer uses this option, the auction ends immediately.
At a standard auction, if a user starts a bidding at a starting price, then Buy-It-Now is hidden and the auction proceeds with a standard bidding. In case the auction also has a Reserve Price, then Buy-It-Now is hidden when the bid meets the Reserve price.

Purchasing

Make a contact with each other after the end of the auction.
Use the communication module of the system by clicking on the available links/buttons on the same auction page or in the section Sale or Purchases.
Fulfil all the needed steps of delivery and paying the item.

Feedback Rating

Leave positive feedback about the other user after the successful end of the auction.
Don’t leave negative feedback in advance – give the other user a chance to fix the problem which is usually caused by carelessness, and not having any bad intentions.
All the feedback ratings are public and once made, they cannot be revised by the users.

Incorrect Users

Balkan.Auction carefully pursues incorrect users. Although the site doesn’t bear any responsibility for the deals between sellers and buyers, it is obliged when there is a tendency to negative feedback, tracked by signals and negative feedback rating comments, to take measures against the incorrect users by sanctioning/ deactivating. You can use the application Contact Us / Incorrect users to report.

When the deal is not concluded at a bidding auction, the seller has the chance to realize an offer toward the second-highest bidder in the bidding.

Accepting the offer from the potential buyer will generate a new auction in the system which will confirm the deal. In this case, there will be an opportunity of generating a shipping form (waybill) with discount (for Bulgarian deals only) and rating comments exchange on the new sale.

Search

Fast Search

Enter a keyword or the auction number in the search bar. A list will appear with all the auctions which titles contain the searched keyword. When entering a few keywords, the visualized list will consist of the auctions which titles contain all these keywords.

You can widen the range of search by using the symbol * (star).
Example of using the special symbol: Enter shirt* in the search bar. As a result, all the auctions which titles contain the words SHIRT, SHIRTs, and so on, will appear in the list.
The symbol * can be used for more keywords.
Example: Germa* shirt*

Advanced Search

The additional specifications which can be entered in the advanced search are the following:
- category;
- seller;
- item origin (country);
- price (range - from/ to);
- search in the description (not only in the title);
- search in the closed auctions;
- search in the new auctions (21 days);
- search in the auctions without Reserve Price;
- search in the auctions with Buy-It-Now price.

When searching in final category, except words you can also enter category features (specifications) like Condition, Size, Colour and so on.
The advanced search by the symbol * is also available here (See Fast Search).

You can sort the results of your search according to two criteria – start time and price (in increasing or decreasing order).

Saved Searches

Every search in the system can be saved and a daily notification of auction results and new auctions is also available. In this way, you will receive information about the start of new auctions of certain items or by a preferred Seller.
You can view your saved searches by clicking on the star icon on the left of the main search module,

and in Settings

Profile, Sales, Purchases

Settings

You can customize your notification messages, change your email address and your password.
In this section you have access to all your Saved searches.

Account

Fees for using advertising/additional options when starting an auction and final value fees will be credited to the user’s account. Keep in mind, the user’s account doesn’t have any payment functions in realizing a deal between Buyer and Seller.
You will receive detailed information about all the transactions and payments made by you, as well as the ways of recharging.

Template

You can create a template which will be of help when you start auctions with repeated parameters/specifications. In this way, you won’t need to enter them at every start.

Banned Buyers

A full list of the banned buyers who don’t have the right to bid at your auctions.
Adding users to your “blacklist” is done from the Profile page of the very users. The link is accessible/visible after log in the system.

Restore Requests

Seller can request a refund of final value fee when the deal is not realized and under the following conditions:
  • no earlier than 10 days and no later than 25 days after the end of the auction;
  • no direct connectivity (linked users) between Buyer and Seller;
  • no positive rating comments on the respective deal;
  • no information of delivered parcel, related to the respective auction.

Link to requesting a refund can be found on the page of every ended with a deal auction.

Active Auctions

A full list of your current active auctions.
You can edit your auctions only in case the bidding has not started yet.
Early ending of an active auction is impossible when there are more than one bidder.

Pending Auctions

You will find here the auctions which you have scheduled to be started in a future moment. You can start them right away or cancel them.

Ended without Deal

A full list of the auctions ended with no sale. You can restart them as the auctions will start under the same auction number and they will be automatically entered in the list of Active auctions.
Keep in mind that all the auctions are accessible up to 45 days after their end. After that deadline has expired, no further activity is possible.

Ended with Deal

A full list of the auctions ended with a sale.
The Buyers’ names are visualized and the option of having a contact with them through the system is available.
Possible additional options:
  • sending a general notification to buyers about won by them auctions + calculator;
  • start of a similar auction;
  • comments on a sale, i.e. writing rating comment in the profile of the respective user;
  • generating Econt shipping form with discount (for Bulgarian deals only).

All the auctions and their details are accessible for up to 45 days after their end.

My Bids/Offers

A full list of the auctions you take part in (bidding or offering).
In this section you are informed about the maximum amount placed by you and the current price of each auction from the list. The current price can be highlighted in red (which means that you are not the highest bidder in this auction or your offer is not accepted) or in green (you are the highest bidder).

Won Auctions

A full list of the auctions in which you are the buyer (the winner).
The users’ names of the sellers are visualized and the option of having a contact with them through the system is available.
Possible additional options:
  • sending a general notification to a certain seller of auctions won by you + calculator;
  • comments on a sale, i.e. writing a rating comment in the profile of the respective user;
  • generating PayPal transaction concerning item paying (at international sales).

All the auctions and their details are accessible for up to 45 days after their end.

Watched Auctions

A list of all the auctions which you have placed under surveillance through the link available on the page of every auction.

Sales Tactics

What starting price should I set?

Directions concerning choosing the sales tactics refer in their main meaning mostly to standard auctions.

Use the minimum lowest price as a starting price that satisfies you. If your item has a greater trade potential, there will be a bidding. In case when you don’t expect a bidding, you can set Buy-It-Now so that in this way you will satisfy the participants who don’t want to wait till the end of the auction.

One-cent Starting Price

It is a fast, easy and risky way of sale.
The final price will be formed by the highest bids and in most cases it will be close to the maximum of the trade potential. Don’t hesitate to include the option Top Auction. Such an auction is attractive – the participants become enthusiastic and even if they have estimated the item skeptically, later they correct themselves by placing a higher bid. The result of all this is that the final price is often higher than your first expectations.
You can include a suitable phrase in the title – SALE, URGENTLY, PROMOTION and so on.
One-cent auctions (without Reserve price) are visualized also in the One-cent section, accessible from the home page.

Reserve Price ?!

Including this option will lead to ignoring the risk of the previous tactic. On the other hand, potential buyers are skeptical towards such an auction. It often happens, even after showing an interest towards the item, they are not willing to participate.
Use Reserve price only if you want cautiously to “see what might happen”.

Low Start Price + Reserve Price + Buy-It-Now Price

It is a marketing estimating tool of the trade potential. The drawbacks of the Reserve price are ignored because the participants have some idea about its value. If you select the option Top Auction, you will get faster and more precise results.
A similar tactic is suitable for high value goods – expensive items, cars, estate sales and so on.

Using Top Auction Option

Even only one Top auction increases the chances of sale of all your auctions. After selecting this advertising option, your auction will always appear in the top places of the search results, i.e. in the Top Auctions slide.
In order to optimize your expenses, we would recommend:
- select 10 days duration of the Top auctions;
- use Homepage Top for no more than 5% of your auctions;
- use Category Top for no more than 15% of your auctions.

Frequent Questions & Answers - General

Lack of a verification SMS code

The phone validation after a registration is made by every user in Settings by clicking the button Send code. After the code is received, it must be entered in the relevant field (Code), followed by a click on the button Confirm. In case the SMS code is not received after you have sent it, please, check if you have entered correctly the phone number. Correct it and send a new code. If there is failure again – Contact Us!

Login problem

Make sure that your user’s name and password are correctly entered. In case of forgotten password, you can generate a new one by the link Forgotten password

Restricted activities

Restriction on user’s activities is possible under the following cases:
- incorrect (incomplete) data in the registration. Please, provide correct details;
- started procedure for additional identification. In this case, documents verifying the ID of the registrant are required;
- a practice of unfinished deals together with negative feedbacks;
- detected attempts to register additional profiles and/or manipulate an auction by linked profiles.

Received rating comment but not counted in the feedback rating score

Feedbacks left by one and the same user can be counted once. A comment is not counted in your rating when it is made by a user who has already left a feedback about a past deal with you. This is the main reason for having a rating score lower than the number of received rating comments.

Removing negative rating comments

Removing a negative rating comment is a possible administrative act but only after a request made by the user who has left the comment (exception: obvious malice/reciprocity).

Lack of administrative answer

The reasons might be:
- filtered email/answer by your spam filter. Please, check directory Spam/Junk in your email box;
- a blocked email address;
- a sent admin notification/answer of the respective case in the recent past.

Frequent Questions & Answers - Sellers

System testing – test auction start

You can start a similar auction only in Auctions Test category.

How much does it cost to the seller to participate in Balkan.Auction

There is no charge for Balkan.Auction registration.
The start of an auction is also for free.
Fees are collected for additional / advertising options and they have fixed values. They are charged at every start and restart of an auction, but only in case when there are selected options by the seller:
- Bold - 0.20 €
- Highlighted - 0.40 €
- Category Top - 1.00 €
- Homepage Top - 2.00 €
A final value fee is charged when a sale is ended. The fee is 2% of the final price but no more than 12 € and no less than 1 cent.
Examples: When there is a deal with a price of 1.00 € - the fee will be 0.02 €; price 20 € - fee 0.40 €; price 150 € - fee 3 €; price 5000 € - fee 12 €.
The fees are charged to the seller’s account. For more information - Fee section.

Edit an active auction

If the bidding has not started yet, you can revise/edit your auction. Link Edit the auction is accessible on the page of each of your auctions but only when you are log into the system. Editing is possible also from Active auctions.
You can add advertising options up to 6 hours before the end of an auction, even if there are bids.
The fees of these options are 50% off when there are less than 3 days left. Adding advertising options can be also done from the page of the auction,

and from Active Auctions as well.

Early ending of an auction

Early ending of an auction is possible when there is a lack of bidding or there is only one bidder as in this case the bidder is deemed a buyer. Ending an auction when there are two or more bidders is impossible.

Not ended sale – final value fee refund

When the sale is not ended, every seller can get a final value fee refund. The activity is possible only after personally generated request (within the 10th and the 25th from the end of the auction). The link is available on the page of the auction. More Help info

In accordance with General Terms and Conditions 14.1 when there is an uncontrolled deal, i.e. at early ending of an auction after an agreement/arrangement between a seller and a buyer through the communication module of the system, there is no possibility of:
- requesting final value fee refund in case of non-finalization;
- writing rating comments.
The system allows such a type of sales but it doesn’t recommend them.
Keep in mind that deals and arrangements which are not achieved through the regular system tools (Bidding, Buy-It-Now, Make Offer), and they are made only through the communication module, cannot offer you any protection against incorrect users. We note that when you have an arrangement about an item, you can revise the auction or start a similar one with a Fixed Price equal to the arranged one and you can require the other user to use the regular tools of the system, namely – the Buy-It-Now button. In this way, the sale will be officially registered and you will be protected if it is eventually not ended with a possibility of getting a final value fee refund and counting feedback in the rating system.

Lack of communication with the buyer

The reasons for not having a contact with the Buyer might be numerous. Please, try again to contact. Anyhow, if there is no further contact with you (within 48 hours), you can leave a relevant rating comment. It will be a sufficient indication/signal to the administrators and the other users.

Placed sanction in accordance with p.14.2

Such a sanction/fee is placed after detecting a Seller’s serial incorrectness concerning a declared reason of an early ending of auctions and in accordance with General Terms and Conditions p.14.2.
You should keep in mind that observing the regulations in accordance with 14.2 is an alternative to the administrative activity of deactivating the user’s profile.
We remind that in case of an early ending of an auction due to a sale through the communication module of the system, it is necessary the relevant activity to be done having a declared reason “Arranged sale through Balkan.Auction system”, and not “Other Reason”. The opposite is considered to be an obvious incorrectness.

Restriction of a bidder

Placing users in the “blacklist” of a seller, eliminates their opportunity of a future participating (bidding) in the respective seller’s auctions. Adding to that list (Restricted Bidders) is done from the profile page of the users. More Help info
In addition - at an auction start, there is a restriction option which sets a participation restriction on users who have low rating score (under 6). The option is available for sellers with 10 and up rating.

Frequent Questions & Answers - Buyers

Interest in a particular item

Note that Balkan.Auction is a platform in which every registered user can sell and buy, i.e. the system is not a trader (a seller of items). If you are interested in a particular item - every auction visualizes the user who has started it, too. After log into the system, it allows you, through the links in each auction, to ask an public question or send a message to the seller and/or participate in a bidding.

Testing the system – test bidding

You can perform test bidding only in auctions started in category Auction Test. The auctions in this category are excluded from the search modules of the system and they are accessible only when you visit that same category.

Wrong amount when placing a bid

There is a Correct/Remove bid module inserted in the system which is in assistance of users who have made a technical mistake when entering amounts. This function is quite limited and it can be used only limited number of times by the user. Removing a bid 12 hours before the end of an auction is an impossible activity.

Item quality responsibilities

Sellers are responsible for the items they sell and their actions in the system.
Note that the system is not an intermediary in the deals, and it does not sustain any experts who can estimate and give guarantees for the authentication of each item. The public sections under the auctions give an opportunity for users’ and experts’ comments. Of course, if there are continuous signals of incorrectness and incorrect description of an item – the auctions will be ended early. When there is repeated negative reports left by buyers and negative rating comments, all the untrustworthy sellers will be deactivated.

Providing delivery data details at a won auction

To finalize a sale at an auction, when you are the winner of the same auction, you should send to the seller your delivery details and pay the item. Making connection is possible either through the link Send message to the seller from the page of the auction or through the available tools in section Won Auctions

Lack of communication with the seller

The reasons for not having a contact with the Seller might be numerous. Please, try again to contact.
Anyhow, if there is no further contact with you (within 48 hours), you can leave a relevant rating comment. It will be a sufficient indication/signal to the administrators and the other users.

Auctions with Approved Access

General Information

Every user of the system has the opportunity to apply for generating a personalized subcategory with a chosen title/name in the category Auctions with approved access.
The user (applicant) is the only one who has the right to start the auctions in this subcategory. That user is the only one who has the right to determine the conditions of participation in those auctions as the including/excluding of users/bidders in the approved list of participation (VIP zone) is done by him.
The link for approval is visualized on the page with the users’ rating comments as it is accessible only to the applicant.


A full list of the approved bidders is visualized in section VIP zone.
Application for a personalized subcategory in Auctions with approved access is sent from the form Contact Us together with the desired title.
There are two options of paying for generating and using such a category – on a monthly basis (65 €) or a yearly fee (495 €).

Auctions with approved access can be visible or invisible for the unapproved users. This option is optional for the seller at the very start of such auctions.
The invisible auctions are visibly inaccessible for the unapproved users.