As silent auctions become a popular and successful source of revenue stream for mid- to large-sized fundraising events, donors have come to anticipate bigger and better items at every event they attend.

Finding bolder and brighter silent auction ideas becomes increasingly harder with every auction your event planning committee runs. Here are a couple of creative ideas to add flare, excitement, and more success to your event:

  1. Simple Basics:
    Being creative with your silent auction ideas is the goal for every event planning committee. However, guests who attend the silent auction will expect certain basic items such as gift certificates and gift baskets. In the process of being creative with your silent auction ideas, it is easy to compromise the basics and loose what your audience is comfortable and expecting to see.
  2. Sports:
    Since the majority of committees consist of females, planners often forget that a happy male bidder will encourage his mate to be active as well. Furthermore, men are statistically more impulsive bidders in auction settings than woman. Fishing talking, golf equipment, or an all access pass to meet your favorite sports star are small and big silent auction ideas that are encompassed the industry that had a $470 billion revenue stream in 2013 alone.
  3. Experiences:
    Whether the experience is a single event, like a backstage pass to a ballet performance, or a weeklong vacation with fine restaurants and theater events, these silent auction ideas hold an intrinsic uniqueness that auction supporters likely can’t find anywhere else. Also, when an opportunity presents itself, it is easier to sign on to an appealing experience you just never got around to doing.
  4. Mission-Focused Items
    It is common to see auction attendees, who bid and lost items, leave the event with money in their pocket they intended to spend – Money they were more than happy to donate to the organization in a creative way. An outside the box silent auction idea is to set up a table where you offer services for your cause to be sponsored in an auction-like setting. For example, if your non-profit sends nets to Africa to help prevent malaria disease and it costs $10 per net, put out a bid sheet letting people bid on how many nets they will buy for your cause. The winner may be 10, 100, or 1000 nets, depending on your donor base. You could set up several of these types of auctions on the same table.