The time when you start an auction dictates the time that your auction will end. Your auction end time can be a vital factor as to the amount of bids the auction will attract and just as vital to how much your auction will earn.
The main thing to keep in mind when starting an auction is the fact that whatever time of day it happens to be when you first post your listing, is the same time of day that your auction will be ending. This is an important factor because many potential bidders will wait until the last minutes or even seconds to place their bids on an item. You want your auction to end at a time when these potential bidders are most likely to be online. I can tell you about an Ebay Motors auction that I just had finish, It ended at a bad time. A time that wasn't a prime time. And due to the auctions poor ending time, as I was later to discover, missed out on several hundred dollars worth of bids. As it turned out, a couple of hours or so after the auction had ended, I recieved a message from an Ebay member stating that they had followed my auction from the beginning, and in fact, had a high bid amount in mind that was much higher than what the final bid ended up being. They had been planning to do their bidding near the the end of the auction. In this particular case, if I had arranged for the auction to end a little later in the day, my item would have sold for several hundred dollars more than it did. As it turned out, the potential bidder that missed out on placing their bid had simply sat down at their computer and logged onto Ebay at their normal convenient time only to discover that the auction they had been following had already ended. And true, they should have been paying better attention to the auctions end time, the fact remains that the item would have attracted more bids, had I planned for the auction to end at a better time than it did. One other person later contacted me concerning the same auction. They were surprised at how low the final bid amount ended up being. They stated that they as well, were simply caught off guard by the ending time. Had they caught the auction near its end, they were prepared to bid much higher than what ended up being the final bid amount. They each expressed dire interest in the item if, by chance, the winning bidder happened not to work out. In fact, one of them was so dissapointed as to make me a cash offer that was nearly double the amount of the winning bid. Of course, it was too late. The auction had already ended, and I as well ended up being somewhat dissapointed. This is a prime example of why you should want your auction to end at what would be considered to be a good ending time.
Lets say that there is an item that you have been wanting to put up for auction. You work all day and decide to stay up late one night and post your item. After you are finished with your listing and finally get it posted it's 11:00 PM. That auction is going to end five or seven or ten days later at 11:00 PM. This is not exactly what I would consider to be a good time for an auction to end. The best time for your auction to end is early in the evening. As far as I am concerned, about the best time frame for an auction to end is generally anywhere from around 6:00 to 8:00 PM. But not later than around 9:00 or 9:30. This is a time when most people will be available to sit down and poke at their computer. These are hours when most people will no longer be at work. It is, or is close to being after dinnertime for most folks. Most people are not in bed yet. These are hours when there are sure to be lots of people logged onto the internet. Common sense dictates that this would be a convenient time to have your auction end. As I stated earlier, many potential bidders will wait until near the auctions ending time to place a bid. Chances are that the more people there are online, the more bidders there are likely to be on Ebay and much better chances that your auction will attract last minute bids. I have had auctions that recieved only one or two bids during nearly the entire seven day auction. Then, in the final minutes of the auction, several more bidders that had been waiting all along jumped in and started a bidding frenzy that ended up accounting for the majority of the final bid amount. It only takes a few interested bidders that are patient and on line at the right time for a bidding war to happen. Had it been 2:00 or 3:00 AM, chances are that the early bids might have been the only bids that this auction would have received.
If not early evening, probably the next best time frame for your auction to end is in the morning. In the morning hours, you would want your auction to end fairly early, but not too early. Say around 7:30 - 8:00 AM, and probably not much later than around 10:00 to 11:00
Starting your auction on a weekend is a good option. Saturdays and Sundays are generally all prime time to have your auction end. So long as your auction doesn't end at an extremely early or late hour. Sometimes, I will post an auction for only five days instead of the usual seven in order for my auction to end on the weekend.
You should always keep in mind that the hours in the middle of the day when most people are busy working, or very late at night, or any other odd hours of the day that are not normal hours for most people to be up and about, are not going to be very good hours of the day to have your auction end.
If by sharing this information with someone new to Ebay saves them from having to learn this the hard way as I have, and enables them to earn a few more bids on a few of their auctions, then writing about this and sharing this information with them will have been all worth while.
"Good luck" and happy Ebaying.