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Getting outbid
In this article
In this article

When another bidder places a higher bid than yours, you've been outbid.

Sometimes you'll be outbid as soon as you enter your bid, even though the bid you entered was higher than the current bid shown on the item listing. This means that someone else has placed a maximum bid that was higher than your bid. Your bid prompted our automatic bidding system to raise the other buyer's bid above yours. The other bidder may have placed their bid hours or days before. If you and another bidder had the same maximum bid, the earlier bid would win.

We can send you notifications to alert you when you've been outbid or when an auction has ended.

Note: Live auction events work a little differently than other auction-style listings on eBay. Learn more about participating in live auction events.

Avoiding being outbid in the final minutes

Placing a high bid in the closing seconds of an auction-style listing is called "sniping" within the eBay community. Sniping is part of the eBay experience, and all bids placed before a listing ends are valid, even if they're placed 1 second before the listing ends.

These tips can help you avoid being outbid:

Make sure that your maximum bid is the highest price that you're willing to pay. As others bid on an item, your bid automatically increases up to the maximum price you specify, so entering a higher maximum might help prevent you from being outbid in the closing seconds of a listing.
In the final 60 minutes of an auction-style listing, use 1-click bids to quickly increase your bid. When you click the 1-click bid button, we automatically raise your bid by one increment. To use 1-click bidding, you need to be signed in to eBay and have at least one bid on the item already.

Receiving email notifications

We send you an email notification if you're outbid on a listing.

Outbid notice

When another buyer's bid exceeds your maximum price, we send you an email letting you know that you have been outbid. You can use the link in the email to return to the item page and increase your bid.

End of item notice

When a listing ends, we send an email notification to losing bidders, informing them that they didn't win the item.

If you don't want to receive these email notifications, you can change your communication preferences.

  1. Go to My eBay > Account.

  2. Click Communication Preferences.

  3. Click the Show link next to Notification Delivery Format.

  4. Change your communication preferences.

Receiving alerts

We can also send you instant message alerts you when you've been outbid or when an item has ended.

To subscribe to these alerts, change your communication preferences.

  1. Go to My eBay > Account.

  2. Click Communication Preferences.

  3. Click the Show link next to Buying Activity.

  4. Change your communication preferences by selecting your preferences from the drop-down menus.

  5. Once you're finished, click Save.

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