How this machine tool auction auction achieved 75% over pre-sale estimates

Customer testimonials like this are what motivates our Auction Team at Machinesused.com. What does it take to be called the Greatest of All Time? 

"John, Jack, and Luke are the real GOATs in regard to the auction. Everything flowed smoothly and I was always kept up on details. Very Professional." 


Customer review for industrial auction

How It Came Together

November of 2021 we were contracted to liquidate the industrial assets of a Tool & Die / Mold Shop.  The owner, Dennis of Detail Tool, was retiring and wanted to be out of the building he was leasing before the end of the year. Dennis called us up at Machinesused.com and inquired about our online auction service. I went to visit Dennis at his shop with my associate Jack Mendenhall, and together we came up with auction plan and projected proceeds that an online auction would bring.

We were very happy that Dennis selected Machinesused.com to conduct his online auction.  With a signed contract from Dennis, we got to work.

Planning a Successful Auction

What does it take to put together a successful sale of Machine Tools and Equipment.  It starts with quality machines that have been well maintained. Then we provide our auctioneering expertise: 

  • Proper lotting of items, gathering them into correct groups, writing good descriptions, and taking good photos.
  • Making operational videos of the CNC machines and automatic machines.
  • Advertising: The proper messaging to the targeted audience, including Search Engine Optimization, Google Ads, social media posts, advertising selected machines on machine listing sites, publishing the auction to online calendars, and sending out targeted email advertising.  

Preview Day is the day potential buyers can come and view and inspect the machines and equipment in the sale.  We usually hold these Previews on the Friday immediately prior to the Auction Closing Date.  Detail Tool's Preview was well attended, with several buyer showing a lot of interest in the CNC Machines and Manual Machine Tools for sale. 

Careful Auction Planning Brings Success

Auction Day was amazing! Bids were flying fast, and furious, and final bid numbers far exceeded expectations. 

When we originally presented our auction proposal to Dennis, we provided him with an estimate for the gross proceeds of the Auction.  I have always believed that providing an honest and achievable estimate when presenting an Auction Proposal.  I may have lost a few deals by NOT promising more than can be delivered, but I much prefer a happy seller who promotes our services than someone disgruntled and angry with results not approaching estimates.  That being said, I also want to get the deals, so there is certainly no purpose to intentionally undershoot in order to look good later.  That approach would not get you any deals in the first place.  I pride myself on being a good Appraiser of Equipment and use that skill to come up with the most probable outcome of the sale.

Well in this case, former results, current comparisons, our own auction histories - all of them fell short of the actual results.  This auction finished at a staggering 75% over pre-auction estimates!  Beyond the care and effort, we made in creating this auction event, what could have created such a huge upswing in value?  

The laws of supply and demand of course! As 2021 progressed, new machine deliveries were delayed over and over again, and machines were being quoted with extremely long lead times - many months! Manufacturers were still chugging along at a nice clip, and they needed spindles now. The only way to get machines now is in used dealer inventories or at auction. Used machinery dealers, like us, have been working hard all year to get inventory for the high demand created by this situation. If you ask any of us, we'll tell you that the secret right now to selling machinery is to have machinery.