eBay has a concept called a Second Chance Offer. It’s something that I’d never heard of before until this weekend. Here’s how it works. Two people bid on an item. Person A wins the auction over person B. Person A either doesn’t pay the seller or decides that they no longer want to purchase the auction item. The seller has a choice: they can realist the item or they can make a Second Chance Offer to person B. If they decide to make a Second Chance Offer, a private Buy it Now auction is setup for person B at the price of their losing bid. They have anywhere between 1 and 7 days to make a decision.
As I said before, I had never heard of a Second Chance Offer before until this weekend. Several weeks ago I had bid on a really great auction for a PowerBook 540c with tons of accessories. In addition to the laptop and its original manual it included an external CD drive (which I could use for many of my CD-less Macs), an external Zip drive, and lots of vintage software on disk. I bid in the last ten seconds of the auction but lost to another bidder. I was really bummed about it because it was a great auction and a great deal. I wished I had bid more. Time went by and I completely forgot about it until I was offered a Second Chance Bid on it this weekend. Apparently the other bidder fell through and it just fell into my lap at the price I was willing to pay. Pretty cool.