WHAT IS “PROXY” BIDDING?
PROXY BIDDING IS WHEN BIDDERS HAVE THE OPTION TO SET A MAXIMUM PRICE THAT THEY WOULD BE WILLING TO PAY FOR AN ITEM AND THEN ALLOW THE BIDDING SYSTEM TO AUTOMATICALLY BID FOR THEM BY THE PREDETERMINED BID INCREMENT (TYPICALLY $10 OR $25 INCREMENTS) UNTIL SOMEONE PLACES A HIGHER BID THAN THEIR MAXIMUM.

CAN YOU GIVE ME AN EXAMPLE ON HOW PROXY BIDDING WORKS?
IF THE CURRENT HIGH BID ON AN ITEM IS $500 AND YOU PLACE A MAXIMUM BID OF $1000, YOUR CURRENT HIGH BID VISIBLE TO THE PUBLIC WILL ONLY BE $510 AND THE COMPUTER WILL AUTOMATICALLY INCREASE YOUR BID UNLESS/UNTIL ANOTHER BIDDER PLACES A HIGHER MAXIMUM BID. IN THE ABOVE EXAMPLE, IF NO OTHER BIDS ARE RECEIVED, THE WINNING BIDDER WILL WIN THE LOT FOR $510 EVEN THOUGH THEIR ACTUAL “MAXIMUM” BID WAS $1000. 

I WAS LISTED AS THE CURRENT HIGH BIDDER ON A LOT UNTIL IT CLOSED, BUT SOMEONE ELSE WAS DECLARED THE WINNER AFTER, HOW COULD THIS HAPPEN?
FREQUENTLY, EXPERIENCED BIDDERS WILL ENGAGE IN A COMMON BIDDING PRACTICE KNOWN AS “SNIPING,” WHEREBY THE BIDDER WILL PLACE THEIR HIGHEST MAXIMUM BID AT THE LAST SECOND IN HOPES OF WINNING THE LOT AT THE EXACT TIME IT CLOSES AND BEFORE ANYONE ELSE HAS AN OPPORTUNITY TO OUTBID THEM.  FOR THIS REASON, BIDDERS ARE ENCOURAGED TO SUBMIT THEIR TRUE MAXIMUM BIDS AS EARLY AS POSSIBLE.