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Automatic bidding
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In this article

Our max bidding (also called automatic bidding) system makes bidding convenient so you don't have to keep coming back to re-bid every time someone places another bid.

In live auction events, max bids are called absentee bids, and work a little bit differently than in other auction-style listings on eBay. Learn more about participating in live auction events.

How max bidding, or automatic bidding works

When you place a bid, you enter the maximum amount you're willing to pay for the item. The seller and other bidders don't know your maximum bid.
We place bids on your behalf using the automatic bid increment amount, which is based on the current high bid. We increase your bid only as much as necessary to make sure that you remain the high bidder, or to meet the reserve price, up to your maximum amount.
If another bidder places the same maximum bid or higher, we notify you so you can place another bid. Your maximum bid is kept confidential until it is exceeded by another bidder. 

eBay will automatically increase your bid until your maximum bid amount is reached

Here's an example:
  1. The current bid for an item is $10.00. Tom is the high bidder, and has placed a maximum bid of $12.00 on the item. His maximum bid is kept confidential from other members.

  2. Laura views the item and places a maximum bid of $15.00. Laura becomes the high bidder.

  3. Tom's bid is raised to his maximum of $12.00. Laura's bid is now $12.50.

  4. We send Tom an email that he has been outbid. If he doesn't raise his maximum bid, Laura wins the item.

Other terms

  • In reserve price auctions, if your maximum bid is at least the reserve price, we automatically increase your bid to meet the reserve, and bidding will continue from there.

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