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Live Auction Items Question

5 years 6 months ago #166511 by Donahue
Our group is a small Catholic school and we are on our 3rd year of our Annual Gala event. The past 2 years we have heard some complaints of our Live Auction portion taking too long. We were wondering what is a good number of items to have for our Live Auction portion of the night?
5 years 5 months ago #166569 by pjmommy
Replied by pjmommy on topic Live Auction Items Question
It all depends but 8-12 is typical depending on the program. These should be your most exciting desirable items and the order of your auction items should follow a bell curve starting with lower price items and moving up to highest value and then back down ending again with lower price point items giving guests who missed bidding in the start to still have the opportunity to win.

For the extra items from your live auction, create a special area called the "super silent" or "Premier Table" and move the excessive items from your live to this table. Then have your Auctioneer/MC highlight some of the items from this table to drive traffic through your silent auction as well.

Hope this helps!
5 years 5 months ago #166571 by Rose H
Replied by Rose H on topic Live Auction Items Question
Hi there pjmommy!

Like the idea of the bell curve. Very interesting!

Rose C.
5 years 5 months ago #166572 by Rose H
Replied by Rose H on topic Live Auction Items Question
Hi Donahue,

I'm moving your question over to our Facebook page to see what community members there have to say about the number of auction items. I'll post a link here when the Facebook question goes live.

Rose C.
5 years 5 months ago #166585 by Christina A
Replied by Christina A on topic Live Auction Items Question
I can not stress the importance of having a professional auctioneer at your event. I believe 8-10 live items are all you need. If you are spending 3-4 minutes per item then your live auction should never go more than 30-45 minutes. You will lose guest interest and control of the room if it goes longer or gets out of control without a professional leading it. For school events it is important to make the event fun, uplifting, and to generate income. You want the parents to spread the word and come back next year. I have chaired our schools auction for 6 years. We have gone from $40,000 a year to well over $175,000 a year. My keys to success are 1) OPEN BAR for at least the first two hours during the silent auction, 2) A PROFESSIONAL AUCTIONEER will pay for itself in the long run, 3) A GREAT SOUND SYSTEM. The house sound system or cheesy sound system will end up costing you money, 4) NO LONG AND BORING SPEECHES. Your guests came to have fun and spend some money. A simple greeting and thank you are all you need. 5) FOCUS ON YOUR "FUND A NEED" portion of the event. A video or slideshow presentation pleading for a cause will help people to open up their wallets for your cause. It's better to spend your time on the "Fund A Need" portion rather than following up on a $10 movie ticket.
Good Luck!
5 years 5 months ago - 5 years 5 months ago #166586 by Rose H
Replied by Rose H on topic Live Auction Items Question
Hi everyone,
Good discussion on live auctions taking place on our Facebook page. Here's the link: .

Looks like the consensus is to do a small number of items at the live auction so it doesn't run too long.

Good luck with your events,
Rose C.
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