Guide to Timed Online Auctions:

Welcome to Sotheby’s Timed Online Auctions. Here is a short guide to the rules of engagement:

 

1.    Select a Timed Online Auction:

You can learn about our timed online auctions by clicking the 'Online Auctions’ link under the ‘Buy & Sell’ tab on Sothebys.com. On this homepage, you will be able to browse the e-catalogue of a currently live timed auction or read about an upcoming auction and its schedule.

2.    Register for the Auction:

Registration is available for an auction only during the dates listed for the auction. From the e-catalogue, you will click ‘register’ and either be prompted to login or to create an account. This will require you to enter your credit card and billing information, as well as to read and accept our Conditions of Sale and Terms of Guarantee (Conditions of Business and Authenticity Guarantee for London based sales). You can subsequently access the Conditions of Sale and Terms of Guarantee (Conditions of Business and Authenticity Guarantee for London based sales) from the e-catalogue and every lot detail page throughout the duration of the auction.

3.    Browse the e-catalogue:

Once the auction is live, lot descriptions, images, and condition reports are available in the e-catalogue throughout the duration of the auction. We encourage you to contact our specialists via the ‘request info’ link on each lot detail page to ask questions about the lots you are interested in, i.e. request a detailed condition report or a shipping quote. 

For London sales, shipping estimates are available and can be accessed in the lot details.

You may also call:
US: +1 212 606 7000
UK: +44 (0) 20 7293 5000


Phone service available Monday to Friday, 9.00 am - 10.30 pm GMT (3.30 am - 5.30 pm EST) and Saturday 2.00 pm - 10.30 pm GMT (9.00 am - 5.30 pm EST).


4.    Place a bid:

Bids may be submitted through the online platform from the start of the auction until the lot closes. Enter your maximum bid, the highest price you are willing to pay on the lot. The bidding platform will then place incremental bids on your behalf as much as is required to ensure you remain the highest bidder (up to your maximum bid). In cases when two equivalent maximum bids are submitted, the first bid received will take priority. If you are outbid at any time you will receive an email indicating this. You may then choose to enter another bid or not. Sotheby’s uses predetermined bidding increments. Please refer to the bidding increments link on the lot detail page for the list of increments.

 

5.    Monitor your bids:

Once you have left a bid on a lot, you will be notified on screen if you are the highest bidder. If you are subsequently outbid, you will be notified by email, and provided with a link to increase your bid. We encourage you to monitor your lots throughout the auction to ensure your status as highest bidder up until the close of the auction.

 

6.    Auction closes:

An end time is displayed for each lot on the lot detail page. Lots will close in one minute increments unless a bid is placed within 5 minutes of a lot's scheduled end time. If this occurs, Sotheby’s will extend the sale of that lot by 5 minutes from the time of the last bid. The extension of any one lot's closing time does not affect the closing time of the following lots. This may result in lots closing out of numerical order.

 

7.    Your purchases:

If you remain the highest bidder at the close of a lot(s), you will receive an email at the auction’s close notifying you of your purchase(s). To check the status of a particular lot, visit the individual lot page while logged into your Sotheby’s account.

 

8.    Payment:

You will receive an invoice shortly after the auction including your total charges along with payment instructions and a shipping quote. Please refer to the auction's Conditions of Sale and Terms of Guarantee (Conditions of Business and Authenticity Guarantee for London based sales) for more information. 


US: +1 212 606 7000
UK: +44 (0) 20 7293 5000

Phone service available Monday to Friday, 9.00 am - 10.30 pm GMT (3.30 am - 5.30 pm EST) and Saturday 2.00 pm - 10.30 pm GMT (9.00 am - 5.30 pm EST).