Top 10 Fundraising Auction Items

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    When charities are looking to raise money, a fundraising auction is a great idea.  There are unlimited options when it comes to picking items to auction off, but picking the right ones is very important. It isn’t always smart to have a surplus of items that sell for under $100.  It may be better to sell fewer, high priced, items.  When selling a few auction items it creates a higher demand, causing the bidding to go up, creating more revenue for your charity.

Top 10 Fundraising Auction Items:

  1. Once-in-a-lifetime experiences:

    Offer a trip somewhere people rarely have the opportunity to visit like Paris, a safari trip in Africa, or a trip to Thailand.  If you want to keep the destination in the U.S., tickets to the Super Bowl, Golf Masters, or a trip to Napa Valley would be a great alternative.

  2. Suite Experience:

    Sports items are very popular at auction events.  The chance for people to experience their favorite team from a suite would drive up bidding prices. A VIP Suite Experience could including parking passes (or valet), concierge/catering service with food and beverage options, and signed  memorabilia donated from the team.

  3. Getaway Packages:

    Offer destination resort packages as a couples retreat.  Bundle the resort with a spa package and surf lessons.  Contact the resort for discounts or donations for the extra incentives.

  4. Family Vacations:

    Not all packages have to be geared toward adult options, family deals can be a big incentive for bidders.  Family vacations, including Disney World, Seaworld, or Universal Studios are great options.  Bundle the park passes with line-skipping passes and the resort condo.

  5. Music Memorabilia:

    There are many auction consignment companies that will ship music memorabilia to charities including signed guitars, records, and posters. This is a great way to bring big celebrity names into an event. Be sure to include authenticity when promoting the item.

  6. Restaurant Tour Experiences:

    Bring the restaurant experiences to the next level.  Offer a ‘restaurant hop’ around the city for eight.  Include all reservations and a car service, like Uber, to ensure easy transitions. Start at a cocktail bar, then appetizers at a second location, dinner at a top restaurant, and finish with dessert at a final destination.

  7. Adventure Packages:

    This can be anything from hot air balloon rides, sky diving, zip lines, etc.  Be sure to make it an exhilarating experience people won’t want to pass up.

  8. Dinner and Show ‘Date Night’:

    Bundle together a fine dining experience with a broadway show.  Purchase tickets to the more popular shows/plays/musicals in your area to ensure the most amounts of bids.

  9. Unique Art:

    Art always sells at auctions, as long as it’s unique and appealing. Consignment pieces from an artist is one option.  To raise the most money, make your own art from turning artistic photographs into large canvas prints.

  10. VIP Brewery/Winery Tours :

    This can be anything from local breweries, distilleries, and wineries for a group to receive their own exclusive VIP tour. Offer a beer/wine pairing with dinner at the brewery at the end of the tour.  Many breweries offer free tours, therefore this is a great way to raise money and keep the auction item local.

When auctioning off more expensive items, it is important to promote the items in advance.  An easy and low cost way to promote is through social media. Online advertising can get the word out and spread awareness about the charity and auction. Promoting auction items advance will prepare bidders about how much money they will may want to donate the night of the event.

What other tips might you want to share with individuals who are planning a silent auction? Leave a note in our comments and we may feature your tip in a future blog post!

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