Online auctions have become an increasingly prevalent mechanism for the exchange of goods and services across the global e-marketplace both among consumers themselves, as well as between businesses and consumers. Such Internet auction mechanisms have the scope of incorporating procedures of much greater complexity and variety, and they exhibit characteristics and properties that are quite distinct from conventional auctions. In this paper, the authors provide an experimental study of the performance characteristics and operational behaviour of a number of online auction models, including the fixed time forward auctions, the Vickrey auctions, as well as models with soft close variable auction times. These online auction models are studied through systematic simulation experiments, based on a series of operational assumptions, which characterise the arrival rate of bids, as well as the distribution from which the private values of buyers are sampled. The behaviour of the average auction income and average auction duration are quantified and compared, and suggestions for efficient online auction design, and procedures for improving auction performance are given.
Information from pubs.doc.ic.ac.uk/online-auction-models.