If you want to sell your bike fast, if you believe it might attract competing buyers, or if you are unsure of its market value, consider selling your bike on The Bike Shed Times through our online auctions.
Auction advertisements cost $125 (listing fee) plus a commission of 5% of the final winning bid if we successfully find a buyer. The listing fee is payable in advance, while the commission is only paid — by the buyer — at the end of the auction. (See the fine print below for details.)
To sell by online auction, complete the form and send us your photos and 60-second video if you have one. We will send you an invoice for the listing fee and get started building your advertisement.
The fine print
Click here to see our terms and conditions.
How does it work?
You set a reserve price, we collect the bids. The advertisement for your bike will be listed on our website as a Bike For Sale By Auction. In addition, we will promote the advertisement to our audience on Facebook, in our subscribers’ newsletter and, if you have a 60-second video, on our YouTube channel as well. Prospective buyers register to take part in the auction and to be given access to your contact details. They can then ask questions to you about the bike, arrange inspection, and place bids online when the auction begins. After the auction, the winning bidder pays 5% sales commission to The Bike Shed Times and the remaining 95% to you.
What do we need?
To build your advertisement we need:
- Up to ten photographs. Photos taken on your phone are fine, but hold your phone sideways for horizontal images. We suggest ten clear and sharp photos, showing the entire bike left and right and also in-close shots of the engine, wheels, tank, seat and dash (showing gauges). Fill the frame with the photo – avoiding background and foreground – and ensure the bike is well lit. Get more tips here.
- Optional: A video of up to 60 seconds. We will host it on our YouTube channel.
- A description of up to 200 words. We will polish the grammar and such, but we need the basic information.
- A reserve price. Your reserve price is the lowest price you are willing to accept for the bike. (Keep in mind The Bike Shed Times takes 5% of the final winning bid as a commission.) We can give you some guidance on pricing, but the decision is yours.
- A starting price. We recommend a starting price lower than your reserve price. The aim is to initially attract bids from bargain-hunters to get the ball rolling.
- Your contact details so buyers can contact you direct.
Once we have all this information we will build your advertisement. We will give you an opportunity to make changes to the advertisement before we promote your bike. We will generally market your advertisement for one week before bidding opens, to give buyers time to register, get their finances in order, and inspect the bike. The auction will then run for one week.
What happens when the auction ends?
If bidding reaches or exceeds your reserve price by the close of bidding, the highest bidder will be legally obliged to purchase your bike at that price and you will be legally obliged to sell. (Learn more here.)
The Bike Shed Times will alert the winning bidder that they have won the auction and send them an invoice for 5% of the final bid. When the winning bidder pays that invoice, The Bike Shed Times will advise you and the winning bidder that all is clear for you to finalise payment of the outstanding 95% to you and to arrange collection/delivery and transfer of ownership.
Please note that The Bike Shed Times retains the 5% payment as its commission. The Bike Shed Times is not involved in arranging or finalizing payment of the balance, nor in collection or delivery of the bike.
If bidding does not reach your reserve price, you will be invited to list the bike for sale on our website as a regular Bike For Sale advertisement, free of charge.
Cancellation or sale outside the auction process
You are able to cancel the auction at any time, including during the bidding period. However, if you sell your bike to one of the registered auction bidders before, during or within 30 days after the auction ending, The Bike Shed Times’ sales commission remains payable by you at a rate of 5% of the actual selling price or 5% of the reserve price, whichever is the higher.
Note: If you cancel your auction, you do not qualify for a free post-auction advertisement.
Selling by online auction – some tips
Make inspection as easy as possible.
The Bike Shed Times has thousands of readers across Australia and many international readers as well – so some of your prospective buyers will not be able to physically inspect your bike.
- Ten clear and sharp photos, showing the whole bike left and right and also in-close shots of the engine, wheels, tank, seat and dash (gauges).
- A walk-around video of the bike. If you can have the engine running or, better still, being started, that’s all the better. We are happy to host your video on our YouTube channel, but a 60-second limit applies.
- Video calls. Most modern smart phones make it easy to make a video call so your prospective buyer can inspect your bike from afar. It is worth saying “video calls welcome for inspection” in your advertisement so people realise it’s an option.
- Independent verification. Prospective buyers often require comfort that your advertisement is legitimate; that you and the bike really do exist and are what you say. If your local motorcycle shop, a bike mechanic or a previous owner is willing to be contacted for verification, it can provide a prospective buyer with crucial peace of mind.
Prospective buyers are likely to ask to see documentation before they bid, so have it on hand. If and when your bike’s new owner decides to get the bike registered, they will need to satisfy the authorities that the bike has not been stolen. A signed receipt from you and having previous registration papers, even if they are very old, is generally enough. Prospective buyers might also ask to see photo ID of yourself, such as a driver’s license.
You can leave this up to the buyer, you can arrange it yourself, or you can help the buyer with some contacts. Here are ours (you are welcome to share):
Shipping internationally. We have done business with Melbourne company Bikes Abroad, and we recommend them. As well as taking care of logistics (collection, crating and shipping) they can also handle the legal paperwork to make sure there are no unpleasant surprises. If your bike arrives without the right documentation, things can get very ugly — so be sure to do it right.
What does 5% look like?
If we find a buyer through the on-line auction process, The Bike Shed Times takes 5% of the final bid (from the buyer) as its sales commission. The buyer pays the seller the remaining 95% of the winning bid.
Buying by online auction – how to bid
You must register before you can bid. Register here.
- Once you have registered, you can access your log-in screen by clicking on My Account, under the ‘Auctions’ drop-down tab (usually top left of website).
- Enter your user name (usually your first initial and surname, eg: JSmith) and password, then select Log In. You are now logged in and authorised to place bids.
- Use the ‘Auctions’ drop-down menu again to navigate to your bike of interest.
4. Highlight the current bid (14000 in our example) by highlighting or double-clicking on the number.
5. Over-write the current bid with your bid (16000 in our example). You may be prompted to login, if you haven’t done so already.
6. Fine-tune your bid with the + (plus) and – (minus) buttons
7. Click on ‘Place Bid’.
Well done. Your bid has been made!
NOTE: In our example, the bid has failed to reach the reserve price. You can raise your bid by repeating the process.
Buying at online auction – some tips
It is a good idea to ask to see some documentation before you bid. If and when you decide to get the bike registered, you will need to satisfy the authorities that the bike is not stolen. A signed receipt from the seller is required but it is also recommended that you have previous registration papers, even if they are very old. If there is no documentation, it’s not necessarily a disaster – but registration can become complicated!
Inspect the bike in person or remotely, or have someone do it for you.
The Bike Shed Times has many readers across Australia and quite a few international readers as well – so you may not be able to physically inspect the bike.
If that is the case, you might consider the following:
- Ask to see a walk-around video of the bike. If you can see the engine running or, better still, being started, that’s all the better.
- Video calls. Most modern smart phones make it easy to make a video call so you can inspect the bike from afar.
- Documented verification. Satisfy yourself that the seller and the bike are legitimate; it’s a good idea to ask for some photo ID (like a driver’s license) of the seller, and the bike’s registration papers (or similar) in that person’s name.
- Condition report. A nearby motorcycle shop may be willing to inspect the bike and generate a condition report, or verbally confirm that they know the bike and/or the seller.
Consider shipping logistics.
Shipping interstate. We have used Bikes Only and Bike Logistics within Australia, and they’ve done a good job. Both will usually provide a shipping quote online in short time. Be aware a bike bought interstate will usually need to be inspected and passed as roadworthy before it can be registered in its new home State. Shipping a bike from one side of Australia to the other typically costs around $1200 with an experienced motorcycle shipper.
Shipping internationally. A bike that arrives in Australia without the appropriate paperwork can be refused entry, so be sure it’s done properly. We have done business with Melbourne company Bikes Abroad, and we recommend them. As well as taking care of logistics (collection, crating and shipping) they can handle the legal paperwork to make sure there are no unpleasant surprises. They can often provide an estimate of total shipping and importing costs before you buy.