Our post on Wednesday described an announcement by Proxibid of their forthcoming embedding bidding service. This service will allow auctioneers to seamlessly embed Proxibid’s systems into the auctioneers’ web pages. In Wednesday’s post, we posed five questions we felt were important to ask of Proxibid and other providers who are looking to offer this type of service. Here’s a recap of the questions we posed.
- Pricing structure – will it cost more to use the embedded solution?
- Simultaneous exposure – will inventories exist on the portal and the auctioneers’ websites simultaneously?
- Branding – will the bidding experience be non-branded or simply embedded?
- Difficulty – how easy will it be for auctioneers to integrate the bidding system within websites?
- Customer pooling – what will the bidder registration process look like and how will buyer information be shared?
We were contacted by Tom Clark, Proxibid’s Chief Operating Officer, and in a phone call this morning he answered these questions.
Proxibid will not alter its pricing structure for auctioneers who elect to use embedded bidding. “Everybody gets it,” said Clark.
Items listed on auctioneers’ websites will also benefit from the exposure on proxibid.com. This simultaneous exposure means an auctioneer’s bidders can place bids on xyzauction.com and Proxibid’s existing customer base can place bids on proxibid.com.
Branding and customer pooling
Clark made it clear that Proxibid’s goal was to provide a wholesale product that could be seamlessly integrated into an auctioneer’s website. The Proxibid logos, headers and footers will be removed, providing a user experience that feels congruent with the auctioneer’s site. Clark said that the goal was to remove the Proxibid branding from everywhere except where it would be required for legal reasons, such as upon registration where users must agree to Proxibid’s terms and conditions. Any existing Proxibid bidder will be able to participate in embedded bidding after meeting the requirements for the event set by the auctioneer without having to create a new account. Proxibid will be exploring allowing the ability for an auctioneer to further customize the pages with CSS and perhaps embed a logo into the bidding application, but those advanced customization options my not be available until future releases.
Clark said that Proxibid’s goal has been and will continue to be to “provide solutions that are economically viable and make sense.” With this regard, it is important that the embedded service be usable by the greatest number of Proxibid’s auctioneer clients. By using frames to include the inventory listings, anyone with a rudimentary knowledge of website design will be able to easily utilize the service and users won’t be confused by changing domain names.
All in all, we think these are the answers auctioneers were hoping for and we look forward to reviewing this service, as well as those from other providers, in the months ahead.