Understanding How Hosting a Silent Auction Can Raise Money for Your Non-Profit
Silent auctions are an excellent tool non-profits have to generate funds for their group. Silent auctions raise funds for charity by creating excitement and attention for a charitable cause. Planning for a successful charity silent auction will require a lot of time and some upfront money.
Many charities enjoy the casual nature that a silent auction provides. There is a lot of flexibility with a silent auction when compared to a more structured live auction event. With so many people at the event taking a look at auction items, a silent auction is a great platform for drumming up some interaction and education of your non-profit’s cause and work. That being said, it’s important that your auction is properly setup and managed to encourage bidding.
The most successful silent auctions raise funds for charity by focusing on the interests of the auction’s bidders. It’s important to not only have the right items on the auction block; your group will also want to create an atmosphere that suits the personalities of your supporters.
Every charity silent auction will require a lot of planning and there will be a lot of moving pieces that need to be managed. Even with all hands on deck, some non-profits struggle with the workload and organization of their event. Strong communication can save a lot of stress, ensure that your staff members and volunteers understand their jobs and work with a focus on collaboration. It’s worth it to have meetings in advance, this helps everyone stay on the same page, especially on the day of the auction.
There are many logistical factors that need to be decided early in the process such as finding an appropriate venue, the amount workers and volunteers required, food and drink options, entertainment, supplies and of course, the silent auction items up for bid. The expenses needed to make your silent auction happen can quickly add up and it’s important to efficiently manage your auction’s budget to keep the event profitable. Once your group has established a budget you will want to stick to it, otherwise you silent charity auction could actually lose money.
Plan ahead and start thinking about your next silent charity auction. The more times you host a silent charity auction the better at it you will become. Take advantage of the lessons learned in previous charity auctions and make your auction an ongoing event that your supporters will gladly mark in their calendars. Once you’ve developed donation relationships it is a lot easier to solicit items for future events. With each additional charity auction, you host you will see your reputation grow, allowing you to have a bigger and bigger turn out everytime.
Finding the right venue is an essential element in the planning of a silent auction that raises money for a charity. You’ll need a venue with a lot of open space for tables with auction items and for people to comfortably browse. Draw out your ideal table layout in advance; this will save you a lot of stress on the day of the silent auction.
The items you pick to auction off will play a large role in the success of your silent auction. It’s fair to say that it may be a make or break. You’ll want to find items that appeal to your audience, think about the interests and income of your supporters. Ideally, you’ll want to auction items that are unique and create competition. Create attractive displays to showcase your auction items. Try grouping together items into baskets to create some excitement. It can also help to group items into categories such as travel, sports memorabilia, art, or any category matching the type of items you’re auctioning off.
At Auctioneers Fundraising Group International (AFGI) we’ve been helping silent auctions raise funds for charities throughout Toronto for over 40 years. We are a family of auctioneers and we bring this experience to every silent auction we work on. Our goal is simple; we want to make your charity silent auction raise money by providing the right tools and experience. We provide unlimited silent auction consultation and advice from day one and will take care of everything from the charity auction’s full set-up to the eventual teardown. We take care of all details so you and your team don’t have to.