A meta-analysis on the effects of online auction design options : The moderating effect of value uncertainty

Research output: Journal Publications and Reviews (RGC: 21, 22, 62)21_Publication in refereed journalpeer-review

3 Scopus Citations
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Author(s)

  • Yuewen Liu
  • Kwok Kee Wei
  • Huaping Chen

Detail(s)

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)507-521
Journal / PublicationElectronic Commerce Research and Applications
Volume9
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2010

Abstract

Online auction design options (the public reserve price, secret reserve option and buy-out option) are critical in determining auction outcomes (the number of bids, the probability of sale and auction price). However, previous studies about the impacts of online auction design options on auction outcomes have generated inconsistent or even contradictory results. To synthesize the inconsistencies and reach more substantive conclusions, we conduct this meta-analysis study. Furthermore, to explain the inconsistencies, we identify the value uncertainty of auction items as a key moderator on the impacts of auction design options on auction outcomes, and verify the moderating effects using meta-analysis methods. This study has three main findings: (i) the public reserve price has a positive effect on the auction price, and this effect is stronger when the value uncertainty of auction items is higher; (ii) the secret reserve option has a positive effect on the auction price when auction items are of low value uncertainty, but the magnitude of this effect decreases when the value uncertainty increases; (iii) the buy-out option has positive effects on both the probability of sale and the auction price when auction items are of low value uncertainty, but has negative effects on these two auction outcomes when auction items are of high value uncertainty. © 2010 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

Research Area(s)

  • Buy-out option, Online auction, Public reserve price, Secret reserve option, Value uncertainty