Add Items to an Auction

There are many ways to add items as an admin from the Bid Beacon dashboard. This will guide you through all possibilities. And if you’re struggling to source auction items, we can help you find the perfect items for your next event. Learn more!

You have the option to Add New Items or Copy Past Items from an event you previously managed.

From Auction Dashboard

While viewing your auction’s dashboard, click the Add Items tile under Quick Actions, or click on the Manage Items tab from the left side menu.

This will take you to the Manage Items screen where you can create new items by clicking on the Add Item button. You can also select Copy Past Items to import items from past events. 

Struggling to find items that spark excitement and bids? Bid Beacon is collaborating with Risk-Free Item Shop to provide auction admins with the best vacation packages, experiences, items, jewelry, and more. Click Visit Item Shop to learn more.

We also include a Total Value calculator. This will automatically sum up the approximate value of all your items and give you a rough estimate on what your auction might raise. If you plan on setting a fundraising goal for your auction, this is extremely useful and can help set a reasonable and achievable goal. 

Additionally, you can also create and manage item categories by clicking on the Manage Categories tab. Next to that, you can also manages fees & taxes which will be covered down below.

From Auction

You can also add items while previewing the auction itself. If you select your auction and click on the Items tab in the header menu, you can see your auction’s Item page.

Click on the Add Item section as seen below.

Add New Item

Fill in all desired fields within the five sections as listed below.  

Click [+expand] and [-collapse] to open and close the available sections.


Click Browse to find your image on your device.

Optionally, you can include a YouTube video link directly on the item’s page.

Click Save as you go, or after filling in all five fields

*We recommend you always include at least one image per item

Item Details

Enter in the Item Name. *mandatory field

Optionally, include a Lot Number to help stay organized and manage your items as they close or once your event ends.

Check off Show as Featured to make the item always appear on your auction’s Details page. A maximum of five items can be featured at a time. If no items are set to be featured, your details page will show up to five items in a randomized order.

Add an Item Description so that guests know exactly what they will be bidding on!

Choose from Item Type dropdown

  • Bid Item – Guests place bids in increments, highest bidder at the end wins.
  • Blind Bid – Guests put their best bid forward and don’t know what others have bid. No one knows who will win until the end!
  • Buy It Now – Sell items at a set price, perfect for selling merchandise.
  • Donation – Give your guests a way to support your cause without needing to bid on an item. Donations are exempt from sales tax.
  • Live Item – Hosting a live or hybrid event? Promote your items that will be auctioned live. Bidding occurs outside the app but once your event ends (or the item itself closes), you can input the winner on each live item to invoice them through the app.
Click on the Category dropdown to select an existing category or to create a new one. Having descriptive categories make it easy for guests to find the items that they’re most interested in.

Enter a Starting Bid ($): We recommend to start the bid at approximately 20% to 40% of the item’s retail value.

Optional: Enter Item Reserve ($): Setting a reserve will prevent the item from being won if the highest bid does not surpass the reserve amount. Guests will see a notice on the item that a reserve has been set but they won’t know the reserve price. As the admin, you can remove the reserve at any point, even after the auction ends.

Set an Increment ($): This is the minimum amount bidders must increase the bid by.

Enter Approximate Value ($): showcases the item value to your guests. This also gets added in to the Total Value calculator mentioned above. If left blank, the message defaults to say, “priceless”.

Additional Information

Paste an Information URL. This could link to additional details about the item, or if the item was donated, link to the donor’s website

Enter any Notes about the item. The text entered here does not appear on auction site as it’s for your internal use only. Great for including frequently asked questions about specific items that you, or other admins, can refer to during the auction.

Donor Information

If you wish to recognize the person or business that donated the item, you can fill in these fields

Enter the donor’s name in the Donated By field.

Optionally, include the donor’s logo by clicking Browse and uploading an image from your device.

Bidding Window

Edit these settings if you want your item to open later or close earlier than your event start and end times. By default, all items open and close at the same time as your event.

Check off Hide Until Bidding Opens if you don’t want guests to be able to see items before your event starts.

Select Custom Bidding Period if you want the item to open later or close earlier than the start/end times for your overall event.

Select Bidding Extensions if you want the item to extend by a set amount of time if a bid is placed in the final 30 second. You can customize the amount of extensions, and how long each extension lasts.

Keep in mind that these settings apply to this item only.

Fees and Taxes

If you wish to collect taxes or apply additional fees, like a shipping cost, on your items, these buttons will take you to the manage Fees & Taxes screen (found on the Manage Items tab) where you can create these different labels.

Once you have one or more labels for fees and taxes, you can apply them to your items at your own discretion.

Copy Past Item

If you plan on using the same items from a previous event, you can copy them into your new Bid Beacon event.

Click Copy Past Items.

Click on Select Past Auction dropdown to view your previous events.

Choose the event you wish to import items from. If you don’t see your event, make sure that you were an admin of the previous event, and 2) make sure you logged into the correct Bid Beacon account.

A list of items will appear. Under the Select column, check off all the items that you want to import, and then click Import.

A Pending Item Copy popup will appear:

  • Click Yes if you are done selecting items and want to copy them now
  • Click No to cancel
Important information to note:
  1. Copied items will include information from Images/Media, Item Details, and Donor Information.   
  2. Copied items will exclude details from the Bidding Window, and Fees And Taxes sections, so be sure to edit these as needed afterwards.


If you are using Stripe as an online payment processor, please ensure that every item you upload abides by Stripe’s Services Agreement – Prohibited and Restricted Businesses. If any of your items fall under the list of prohibited or restricted businesses, Stripe may restrict and close your Stripe account.

Looking for auction items that attract more bids?