Bidr Gives Silent Auction Organizers the Dimension of Mobile Technology

Anyone who has ever organized or participated in a silent auction knows just how inefficient the bidding process and event management can be. Bidding sheets, clipboards, and a slow, cumbersome process often lead to auction abandonment, table hovering, confused participants, and frustrated organizers. Charleston startup Bidr is eliminating paper-driven silent auctions with its mobile technology by giving event organizers the ability to accept and manage bids via text messaging.

bidr-textBidr founder Sam Staley developed the program after being involved with various charity events in the Charleston area. He saw the need to create a digital platform that would eliminate the hassles involved in traditional silent auctions.

What makes Bidr so unique is that unlike other digital auction platforms on the market, Bidr does not require the installation of an app or use of specific hardware. Instead, Bidr is text-based so anyone with a mobile phone can use it, making it easy for all users, including less tech-savvy attendees. Texting bids equals more bids and more money raised.

The bidding process begins when an attendee simply sends a text message containing the auction code to a designated Bidr phone number, and Bidr replies back with simple questions to prompt the attendee’s engagement in the auction. The whole process is intentionally conversational, with questions such as “What is the auction item number you would like to place your bid on?”

With no more hovering over tables–high bidders are automatically notified of the item’s current bid, how much they need to bid to compete, and when they have been outbid. Winners are notified and sent payment instructions once the auction has ended. An electronic receipt and resale tax form are emailed to each winner; donors of each item may optionally be emailed their tax receipt as well.

Auction organizers will enjoy Bidr’s administrative features:

• Accept and manage bidding via text messaging as well as direct the auction itself.

• A real-time, web-based dashboard allows tracking of participants and bids from any web-enabled device through the auction. Bidder participation and habits can be tracked across multiple sites.

• Organizers have the option to extend bidding periods before and after actual event times.bidr-auction

• Highlight items at the event through digital signage on optional companion screens and draw attention to low interest items.

• Custom templates are available to meet your brand needs. Sponsor messaging and branding can be included as part of the experience, giving organizers additional revenue opportunities.

Bidr also extends the reach of auctions with its capability for virtual attendance. Auction participants are no longer bound to the auction area to continue bidding. If someone cannot attend the event, they can use any web browser to access the auction dashboard to bid on items from any location.

Bidr has successfully boosted a number of fundraising events including the Red Thinking Art Auction, Cast and Blast, Seahorse Festival, Let’s Help Kids and Sullivans Elementary Wig and Stash Bash, where it helped the school reach a 47% increase in silent auction earnings.

Bidr was recently selected for CoHort 2 of the Harbor Entrepreneur Center Accelerator program.

Learn more at Bidr.co  and follow their updates @BidrAuctions.

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