Run a Silent Auction at Virtually Zero Cost

Fundraising admin holding up a sign that says "Keep More of What You Raise"

Are you looking for a cost-effective, online silent auction solution for your next fundraiser? With Bid Beacon’s surcharge feature, you can save big on all your fundraising events.

What Is a Surcharge?

A surcharge is an additional percent fee that gets applied to all winning bids within the auction. You can set a custom surcharge amount to cover some or all fees incurred while running a silent auction. This allows organizations to recoup the following fees:

  • Platform Fee: all winning bids are subject to Bid Beacon’s platform fee, up to the auctions fee cap.
  • Payment Processing Fee: for auctions using one of our supported payment providers (Stripe Connect, Stripe, Square, or PayPal), transactions are subject to the provider’s processing fee (typically 2.9% + $0.30 per transaction).

For example, if you applied a 3% surcharge and a guest won an item for $100, they would end up paying $103. The additional $3 would then go directly to your organization to help minimize the amount you pay from the fees mentioned above.

How Does This Help Your Organization?

Applying a surcharge to your fundraising activities can help you host events more frequently and raise more for your cause, at virtually no cost to your organization. Here’s how:

  • Increased Funds for Your Mission: by adding a small surcharge, you are essentially passing on the silent auction fees to your guests. This allows you to retain more of what you raise, directly benefiting your organization’s mission and goals.
  • Frequent Events: with reduced financial strain, you can organize fundraising events more often, increasing your opportunities to engage with donors and raise funds.

Best Practices To Implementing a Surcharge

  1. Determine the Surcharge Amount Pre-Auction: settle on the surcharge amount before your auction goes live.
  2. Maintain Consistency: while you can change the surcharge during the auction, it’s best to avoid this to prevent confusion or frustration among guests.
  3. Communicate Clearly: inform your audience about the surcharge, including why it exists and how it benefits your organization. This information can be included in the auction’s description or payment instructions. Guests are more likely to accept a surcharge if they know the additional fees are for a good cause.
  4. Ensure Visibility: display the surcharge clearly. With Bid Beacon, the surcharge is automatically shown to guests, allowing them to make informed decisions before bidding.

Using Bid Beacon’s surcharge feature allows you to maximize your fundraising potential while maintaining a budget-friendly approach. Start planning your next online auction today and see how this small change can make a big impact!

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