Penny auctions offer your favorite gadgets at unexpected prices. But, in Nigeria, the general discourse has been around the quality and legitimacy of the items, and also the process of the auctions. Kobobid, a novel fast-paced bidding platform, that has recently launched its own spin on penny auctions, known as “kobo auctions”, is here to clear the air.
In the current Nigerian economy, where the need to budget is greater than ever, penny auctions provide an incredible appeal precisely because of their unbelievable product prices. And whether as a harmless form of retail entertainment or grabbing mouth-watering deals, they are growing increasingly popular.
When you think of online auctions, eBay probably immediately springs to mind. While they’re an undisputed industry leader in the online auction sphere globally, hundreds of penny auction websites now populate the Web, and they all work very differently than more conventional online auctions, especially in Nigeria. The downside is that most of these penny auctions platforms have been unable to stay afloat in their industry.
Kobobid is the aftermath of the shortcomings of penny auctions in Nigeria. The platform marries all the pros of penny auctions, in addition to providing other features that bear our local touches and are relatable to our society and economy. It was created to accommodate the wide variety of needs of consumers by giving them access to top shelf items at greatly discounted prices.
The start-up is looking to transform the negative image of too-cheap-to-be-true penny auctions, and change the way people shop online with their brand new, factory-sealed products in its timed online auctions. Items on these auctions generally sell for 60%-70% below their retail price. To participate, users sign up for a free account and follow the swift process it takes to start bidding, including purchasing a ‘BidPack’ which is their bidding tool.
During auctions, each bid placed by a user counts as one kobo and adds 10 seconds to the timer. The last person to bid on the item before the timer runs out wins and only pays the accumulated price from the bids for the item.
To further establish their legitimacy, Kobobid incorporates a ‘buy it now’ feature to its auctions which allows users purchase items after placing only one bid on that specific item. This feature allows users to subtract the value of the bids they’ve spent on the item from its retail value and only pay the difference, sometimes with a bonus discount. So, for example, if you’ve spent 10 bids on an item that costs 10,000 naira on Kobobid and you decide to still buy the item after losing the auction, you’d only pay N9,000 for that item.
Suffice to say, there are many ways to win on kobobid.com. It is thus a fantastic alternative to traditional e-commerce, because if you’re bidding for something you want to buy anyway, the best case scenario is you win it at a huge discount, and the ‘worst case’ is you get it at close to retail price.
Additionally, Kobobid aims to elevate the possibilities for penny auctions by incorporating elements of gamification and widening its scope of available products by giving customers the ability to choose from a list of possible benefits in a single auction either through winning or using the “Buy it Now” feature.
The history of penny auction in Nigeria has been mostly obscure but more recently chequered. Kobobid looks forward to building a transparent and scalable penny auction model and growing it into a larger, more comprehensive e-commerce site where customers can enjoy an alternative method of shopping for their favourite products.
Now much more than just a penny auction site, Kobobid is all set to continue to deliver big wins and quality products into the future.