Join & Receive

Mind-blowing updates and exclusive deals from the best penny auctions.
First Name
Email Address

This article is from Jason of Statements and opinions expressed in articles from guest authors do not necessarily reflect the opinions of the Penny Auction List.

Many of you are familiar with the bluff in poker, but in the world of penny auctions “bluffing” is not really talked about that much. When playing texas holdem, pulling off a successful bluff means making a bet with a weak hand in order to win a pot that you would not have won otherwise. In the world of penny auction sites, bluffing means to steal an auction that you would not typically be able to win with the bids you are planning on spending trying to win.

This post examines some ideas on bluffing in penny auctions and gives some insight into some strategies and tactics that might help you win more auctions with less bids. There is nothing wrong with taking a few shots at big items with smaller amounts of bids budgeted, but just know up front that the bluff is generally ineffective. However, when it does work the winnings should make up for some of the times it failed. Like in poker, a bluff only has to be successful a small percentage of time to make it a profitable play overall, and similar thinking can be applied to penny auctions.

How To Bluff In A Penny Auction

  • Count Down Bidder Bluff
    The first type penny auction bluff is probably the most effective if used sparingly. This bluff is executed when you spend a set amount of bids making sure your name is on top at the very beginning of the count down timer. You are essentially bidding early and often with the intent to win the auction early straight away before it gets much traction or attention on the board. Most auctions close moments after they open generally speaking, so being the count down bidder bluff can work on some auctions, especially those that are not super competitive. On the really popular items you are almost always going to have competition unless you are an established power bidder. Do not try this bluff too often or other bidders will pick up on your strategy and make you a target, just like when playing poker.
  • Bluff a bid-agent
    This tactic is to trick an auto-bidding bidder into stopping by aggressively bidding against him as fast/aggressive as possible. Depending on which penny auction site you are playing at will determine how effectively you can try to bluff an auto-bidder as the big sites all use their auto bidders slightly different but the short answer is to aggressively bid against the auto bidder in order to get him to stop. Auto bidders are more likely to stop against aggressive bidders than against last second clickers. If you are willing to spend 30 bids bluffing to win an auction it would make more sense to spend them aggressively as possible if you are trying to pull off this bluff and score a quick win.
  • Reverse-bluff
    This is a strategy that essentially lets you stop bidding against a stubborn opponent and test the waters to see who else is out there waiting to bid. This strategy is essentially to feign giving up on the auction and getting someone else to come in and wear down your competition for you while you wait to pounce. It’s a risky bluff because you really have to let the timer run all the way down and hope that there is some other bidders waiting to bid! Your bluff exposes any other bidders waiting in the wings and makes your competition burn bids against one another while you wait again for the next opportunity to get involved. Be warned though, this bluff can also backfire by getting in other aggressive and strong bidders who may have just watched and not participated if you stayed active in the auction. Fair warning with this bluff as when it fails it really stings!

To Bluff Or Not To Bluff

Before deciding on a good auction to bluff, you need to look at the competition, the site itself and the time of the auction relative to everything else going on at the site. If the penny auction you’re watching is during a busy time of day there might be so many auctions going on that you can sneak in a win, whereas at other times of day the site is so slow that you only have to bluff out a small amount of people making your chances of winning go way up.

As penny auctions evolve there will undoubtedly be more sophisticated bluffs and bidding techniques that smart bidders employ to help them win more while using less bids.

We hope you enjoyed this article on how to bluff on penny auctions. Keep an up to date look at the latest from this emerging market at and keep up with the latest trends and strategies as they evolve.