Support Center

Setting up your Auction.

Last Updated: Mar 21, 2019 09:41PM PDT
Q. What is required to start an auction?
A. You will be required to complete a few steps before you can get your auction started. But don’t worry, it’s pretty painless! You will be asked to provide some basic information about your organization and details about your auction. You will also be able to upload your organization's logo and/or images. Don’t worry, you can easily change/update/revise all of this information at any time.
Because all successful bidder payments will be made by credit card, you will need to set up an account with our payment processor Stripe to receive your money! Stripe needs to verify your identity as part of their account set-up. One method is your SIN, but most Canadians are hesitant to give this information, and if you are one of them, just leave this field blank. Your account will be immediately activated and Stripe may choose to contact you and ask for another form of verification.Once you complete these steps you will be ready to set up your auction and get things started. *​Please note that as of September 14, 2017 Stripe has changed some of their fee structures in that they will no longer refund Stripe fees if an item in an auction is refunded by auction owner.

Q. Do I have to be a registered Charity to host an auction on

A. Nope! You can be an individual, a business, a non-profit or a charity. (Please note: Charity auctions are offered a discount).
Q. Where do I go to start an auction?
A. Click on Start an Auction on the top navigation bar and complete the steps. Or contact our Customer Support or email (Avocette owns GoBid) and we will be happy to help.

Q. How long does it take before I can start an auction?
A.  That’s up to you. As soon as you have validated your email (we will send you a link) and set up your Stripe account, you will be able to create your auction, pick the start and end date, add items and promote.

Q. How long should I run my auction for?
A. The auction can run for as long or as short a timeframe as you like but our experience is that between 2 to 3 weeks is optimal.

Q. What time of day does my auction go live and close?
A. That's up to you. You have the option of choosing the exact time your auction starts and ends. You can also customize the start/end time of each auction item.

Q. How do I add items to my auction?
A. Once you set up your auction (or auctions - you can have more than one), you will be able to add items by going into your ‘Manage Auction’ page. There will be the option to ‘Add Item’. All items will be hidden until the auction start date.

Q. Can I add items to my auction after it has started?
A. Absolutely. Just go to your ‘Manage Auction’ page and follow the steps in ‘Add Item’. You also have the option of staggering the start and end times of every item. We've made sure to give you lots of flexibility to customize to your needs.

Q. How do I determine the ‘Starting Price’ and ‘Bid Increment’?
A. Good question. Bidders are looking for a deal so if your opening bid is too high, you may not get any bites! Rule of thumb is 40% of full market value (FMV) - keeping in mind final sale prices on auction items average 70% of FMV. Bid increments should be roughly 10% of FMV rounded down to make the math simple (for example, if the FMV is $700, starting bid would be $250 with bid increments of $50).

Q. What information can I provide about my donor?
A. When you add an item, you will have the option of recognizing the name of the donor along with their website (assuming they are a business). In addition, our image uploader allows you to add 25 images so one or more of these could be your donor’s logo or image.

Q. What information should I include about the auction item?
A. It's really important that you provide accurate and detailed information about items you are adding to your auction. People are going to be more inclined to bid if the details are clear. Make sure you include any 'Special Conditions or Restrictions' (like black-out and expiry dates, age restrictions or booking specifics). The last thing you want is someone who wins an item and then finds out that certain conditions were not disclosed.

Q. What images do I need to set up my auction and when adding items?
A. When you set up your auction you will want to upload your organization's logo. Square images that are 300 pixels x 300 pixels or larger are best. For each item you add, you have the opportunity to upload up to 25 images. Remember, a picture is worth a thousand words so don’t be stingy! You can also use this spot to add in your donor’s logo.

Q. Do you have recommendations for the size of images I’m uploading to get the best results?
A.  Our image uploader automatically resizes your pictures but for best results, square images are going to be best, preferably 300 pixels x 300 pixels or greater, in .jpg, .png or .gif formats.

Q. My tax accountant says I need to charge GST/HST. Is that possible?
A.  Yes. When you set up your auction you have the option to charge GST/HST. Once you choose 'yes', you will need to provide the amount based on your province. We have provided a link to the CRA site in case you require confirmation.

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