How’d You Like to Bid on Some Money?

The online auction is nothing new. If you’re looking to score a deal on a new Nintendo Wii or maybe a used digital camera, heading to a place like eBay isn’t such a bad idea.

One of the newer developments in recent years is the penny auction, giving you the opportunity to buy an iPod for pennies on the dollar. Quite literally.

Taking a slightly different approach to this concept is Bid on Cash, the website that serves as the subject of today’s review. As its name implies, you actually bid on cash prizes.

Getting into the Game

Getting started with Bid on Cash is a very quick and painless process. First, you’ll need to fill out the user registration form, which really only asks for a username, email address, and password.

From there, you’ll need to confirm your email address and you’re pretty much ready to go. There is a section to fill out the rest of your personal profile, but you don’t have to do this right away. You will, however, need to spend a little cash to buy some bids.

So, How Does It Work?

In case you’re not familiar with the penny auction system, you need to buy bids (a dollar each) that you can subsequently spend on the various auctions. Each time that a new bid is placed on a prize, the cost of the auction goes up by a penny and the countdown timer goes up for a set amount of time.

As you can imagine, the auction ends when the timer runs out. The key, then, is to get in the last bid, hoping that no one else puts down another bid after you. The difference with Bid on Cash is that you are, well, bidding on a cash prize of varying value.

The prizes seem to start at $30 on the low end, all the way up to about $400 on the high end. If you figure that each dollar spent on a bid results in one extra penny in the value of the auction, then Bid on Cash needs to get at least 30 bids ($0.30 value) to break even on a $30 auction.

Look at the list of closed auctions, it seems that they’re currently falling pretty far behind on that goal. Most auctions are ending at below the break-even mark; I saw a $100 auction end at 11 cents. In effect, Bid on Cash lost $89 there, not including the other costs involved in running the site.

BidJames is Your Automated Sniper

While you could spend hours on end staring at the main page of Bid on Cash, eyeing the auctions that are soon drawing to a close, you can set up an automated solution instead. That solution is called BidJames.

This virtual assistant, so to speak, will automatically bid on the auctions on your behalf. You activate his services, tell him the bid range and the number of bids to use, and he’ll do the rest. As you can imagine, you can burn through the bids pretty quickly using a system like this.

Getting Extra Free Bids

You can buy additional bids for the site in packs of 20, 30, 50, or 100, but there is no incentive to buy the larger bundles. It always works out to a dollar a bid and, from a business standpoint, I recommend Bid on Cash provide more of an incentive to “players” to buy the larger bundles.

If you don’t want to buy more bids, you can earn some free bids by referring your friends. When someone signs up and buys a bid package using a referral link, you get 10 free bids and the referral gets one free bid.

The Penny Auction for Cash

You probably shouldn’t expect to get rich from Bid on Cash. It can be a fun game, perhaps, but it can get very expensive at a dollar a bid. Also, like all the other penny auctions on the Internet, you do run into the possibility of fraud and deceit. I received five free bids to do this review and, well, I was always outbid. I saw others win auctions at much lower totals.