Is Dealdash a Scam, or a Legit Auction Bidding website?

Is Dealdash a scam?
Is DealDash a scam?
Name: DealDash

DealDash is a penny auction site, where buyers bid on overstock items with the aim of getting a huge bargain.

DealDash is probably not a scam but make sure you understand the costs!

DealDash will do what it says on the tin.  This is not a scam because as far as I can see they deliver on what they offer: if you win an auction you will receive your item.  Bidding starts at ridiculously low prices and all bidding increments are $0.01 only.  Sounds like a great way to snap up a bargain?  Well, YES and NO.

The catch is in the actual costs of the bidding, which is well documented on the website so there is no scamming involved here.  If you are going to use this, make sure you read ‘how it works’ section on the website.  Here is my brief review of the workings:

How does the DealDash bidding system work?

This not your typical Ebay style bidding website.  The main differences are:

  1. Each bid will cost you only $0.01
  2. There is an auction clock which restarts from 10 seconds every time someone bids
  3. Bidding fee of $0.60 every time you place a bid
  4. If you do not win the auction, you will STILL pay your bidding fees!

That last point is crucial.  This is the catch.  Remember that this is penny bidding.  If the auction you are trying ti win is a popular one, you could easily bid 10, 20, 30 even 100+ times.  So if you star bidding o a low cost item starting at $1.00.  You bid 20 times, which means you were outbid 19 times, so the new price is now $1.39 and you win the auction.  Still sounds like a bargain right? But remember to take into account the bidding fees.

You win the auction:

Final bid $1.39

plus bidding fees 20 x $0.60 = $12.00

Total Cost = 13.39

If you lost the auction:

Bidding fees of $12.00 and you walk away with nothing!

The exception: Buy it Now

There is also a “Buy it Now” option.  If you opt for that, all bids placed in that auction are credited to your bid balance, which can be used in a new auction without buying more bids.

The problems with DealDash

  • Pressure : The short time on the timers leave little time for buyers to think
  • Risk: Once you start bidding you are always at risk of losing the auction and all your bidding fees
  • When to stop: The penny increments on the bidding will make it hard to decide when to stop – it is easy to think you could win it with one more bid
  • Tracking your costs: You really need to stay on top off your bidding and keep track of your bidding fees and check if you are still happy with the real cost of you purchase
  • It is a gamble: You have no idea when the other bidders will stop.  No-one will want to loose their bidding fees, which will motivate all the competing bidders to keep on bidding.  In normal auction sites the bidders will stop when the auction price approaches the retail price of the item
  • Popularity: The more popular the sites becomes, the less bargains will be available and more bidders will loose out
  • Misleading ads: Their marketing campaigns are misleading by not explaining the bidding fees.  This is a major difference from sites like Ebay and the majority of viewers will be under the impression that DealDash is just another auction site like Ebay

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Conclusion: Is DealDash really worth it?

From my point of view, I would not recommend this.  If you like gambling, then you probably understand the risk and this might be your thing.  I suspect most buyers come to the site looking for a good bargain though, and are not likely to be willing to take on the risky bidding fees.  If you decide to give this a go, please make sure you fully understand the workings of the bidding costs.

Is it a scam or not?  From the point of explaining their terms on the website, I would say no.  But I am not sure if it is ethical to charge bidders simply for the ‘service’ of placing a bid…

What do you think?

Have you tried DealDash before?

Any good or bad experiences?

Any thoughts, questions or comments about my review?

Please let me know in the comments below


30 thoughts on “Is Dealdash a Scam, or a Legit Auction Bidding website?”

  1. Hey Wally,

    Thanks for bringing this to everyone’s attention. I was going to sign up until I read your review. This is pretty frightening how you could end up paying for nothing.

    I can indeed be construed as gambling. It’s definitely not something I would be prepared to take part in.

    Is there a better auction site you would recommend?

    • I’m still a fan of Ebay. It has been around long enough and you can get Paypal buyer protection if use it. Depending on which country you live in, there are other sites that can help you find auctions with no bids yet, misspellings or local searches for collection only. All those options reduce the competition and I have picked up many toys for 0.99 like that.

  2. Hello,
    thank you for sharing interesting review about Dealdash. I have to point out, you really explain in detail everything we need to know about Dealdash. I agree with you, it is a little bit of risky. If I will try it out, I will let you know about my experience with Dealdash.
    Best regards

    • Hi Karlo. If you decide to give it a go, please make sure that you set your limits on your bidding and keep track of your total bidding fees. It is a VERY risky type of auction!

  3. From what you have highlighted in your review, and my own experience, I think there are better options out there. As you have already pointed out, it’s not the final price paid but the bidding fees lost that is going to catch out most people.

    At least with Ebay, you always have control over what you expect to pay for a product, and no fees if you don’t win the auction…

    • I agree Simon, as I pointed out in another comment I am fine with Ebay and have picked up many bargains by being patient and using the tools available. The fear of losing your bidding fees will push you go further than you should.

  4. Hello. Interesting. I have had lots of experience with Ebay-both in placing ads and in buying and I enjoy the thrill of it. I have never heard of Dealdash.
    As you mentioned it is probably not a scam but the paying to bid…I don’t know about that. It could ad up fast. Is there a way you know how much your tab is as you bid? Do you give a credit card number up front?
    I think I would stay with Ebay. I guess just for the name and the popularity of it. Good luck.

    • Hi Billy. I have not tried to bid because I don’t want to waste my money on it. I would hope that at least they show you a running total including bidding fees. From the small print in one of their TV ads it mentioned that in one the examples of someone winning a Television auction, the winner placed just over 400 bids to win!

  5. True, this is a gamble. But for some people, that’s what makes it so appealing. The idea of winning something for pennies, even though you’re actually paying dollars, is psychologically appealing. There’s a lotto feel to it.

    It’s also similar to the “Free Shipping” mentality. People perceive free shipping as a great deal. Even though, especially on Ebay, they may find an even better deal via a lower price but paying for shipping.

    If you’re willing to gamble, there’s nothing wrong with DealDash. But, as you said, it’s important to realize that it is a gamble and you could be out money for nothing but the thrill of bidding.

    • You’re right, looking at the popularity of it, the thrill of the gamble is attracting of bidders. There is something appealing about being able to bid one penny at a time vs the increasing minimum bids of Ebay. As I mentioned, they do explain the bidding on their website, so all buyers should be aware of their risk exposure is.

      I agree with the free shipping comment. I have learned to sort my searches by total cost. Its easy to be attracted to listings with free shipping because it makes you feel like you’re getting a good deal.

  6. Not altogether sure I like this type of auction site…at all really!
    The setup of the 60 cent charge every time you bid is harboring on the edge of scam to me – this site probably makes a ton of money from this system. And how do we know there are no false bids put up? They could easily throw one in to get you to bid again….

    • Hi Chris. A very good point, I have just read a few complaints on a consumer website by customers convinced that there was fraudulent or fake bidding activity going on. They claim that when they start bidding on identical items which have gone for cheap in another auction, they suddenly have to bid as more than twice the amount to win the auction.

      Not knowing what goes on in the bidding is a real concern.

  7. I am So happy I read your article! I have been debating whether or not to use this Dealdash site. I went on and started to set up an account, but it all seemed to complicated and risky to me. Their advertising is definitely misleading. Your article explains it quite well. Thanks so much!

    • Indeed, it is very risky John. I would not try it unless you are 100% sure you understand the bidding system and the risks involved.

  8. Wow, Deal Dash system is actually quite smart. I can see how a lot of people can get hooked on Deal Dash since they would not want to lose the money that they already put in every time they place a bid. It would definitely feel like gambling. I really like how clearly you explain their system to other people. I’m sure not a lot of people would read the fine prints when they sign up. Your article is very helpful!

  9. I’m glad you cleared this up for me. I’ve been thinking about trying deal dash for some time now but I had no idea they had a bidding fee. That’s very important info that they certainly don’t put in their reviews. I know you mentioned you prefer Ebay over this site but I find that just what you said could happen to deal dash as it becomes more popular has happened to Ebay. I have a hard time finding great deals on Ebay, they usually have minimum bids. Can the items in deal dash have minimum bids required? If not I might still give it a shot.

    • I still manage to pick up some great buys on Ebay. That requires patience though, where the lure of DealDash is that every auction is potentially a bargain. It does not look like there are minimum bids in DealDash, but I have come across some users who are concinced that there are fake bids going on to drive up the prices…

  10. This sounds pretty scary to me. Even though we play with cents there, at the end of the day these cents sum up to more serious bucks. From experience I know that very often people tend not to read instructions and rules so these bidding charges could be very unpleasant surprise to many. I think I will rather stick with e-bay just as you suggest in your comment and avoid the risky Dealdash auction. Thank you for your profound review.

  11. They might deliver on what they say the do. but real auction sites do not charge you to bid. even if it is only 60 cents. Thank you for this review I do not think I will be going over to this site anytime soon.

    Do you have a better auction site?

    • Same as I replied to the other comments, I still stick to Ebay with assistance of sites like baycrazy to help me find good deals. Sometimes they work, other times they don’t, but that is how it goes with legit auction sites. Your risk should be not getting the item that you wanted or winning the auction but paying a bit too much. Never paying too much and walking away nothing!

  12. What a strange auction! It looks to me that DealDash really exploits the excitement surrounding the bidding process. It could be so easy to overspend.

    Actually, the process is ridiculous unless you get profound pleasure in bidding. I prefer to know what something will cost me and then just pay for it.

    DealDash makes it complicated for a reason and I don’t trust that.

    • Yes Gary, I think the excitement comes from bidding for an item listed for only pennies. As you said, one can easily overspend on it.

  13. I agree that it is not a scam, but it is misleading which I’m sure these auctions count on. Of course, none of them mention the bid fee in their commercials, unless it is in fine print on the screen. I haven’t tried any of those bid fee auctions. I’ll stick to free bid Ebay. I hope others see your post before they try any of these auctions.

    • They should really include full costs in the marketing, at minimum show the actual total price that the auction paid. It might still be bargain, but its not fair to say someone bought a TV for $200 when they paid an additional $200 on bidding fees

  14. I’ve never taken part of in an auction website before, but I’ve seen commercials on TV about Dealdash. They make the website out to be amazing but your review you exposed the truth about how this website works and told the good and bad about Dealdash. I had always considered trying out Dealdash but thanks to your review I know Dealdash isn’t for me.

    Thanks for this honest review.

  15. I don’t think charging to bid should be legal. It’s gambling pure and simple. Do they carry a license allowing this gambling site? It’s a casino in hiding. In some states this surely falls under illegal behavior and practices. I’m more than dismayed by the blatant reality. It’s unacceptable and dare I say ungodly and unamerican?


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