Auction Lingo

auctioneer the person at the front of the room, who solicits the bids from the bidders
bidder a person placing bids in a live auction
bidder number when a bidder registers, the bidder is usually given some type of number or other identification, to be used when identifying who is the current winning bidder and who has actually won the bid
bidding process the auctioneer (or a color commentator) describes the item or lot that is being offered for sale. He (or she) then states whether there is a reserve (see reserve) and/or a minimum price. The auctioneer sets a starting price, and if any bidder bids (by putting up their hand or bidder number), then the auction points out the bidder and indicate they are the current winning bid (but haven’t won yet). The auctioneer then suggests a higher price, to see if a different bidder is willing to overbid and take control of becoming the new winning bidder. Once an amount is reached that the auctioneer can’t find anyone to overbid, the auctioneer will do a countdown, and then award the current winning bidder as the won bidder.
bids amounts offered in payment for an item being sold at live auction
buyer a person who is buying an item from a consignment store or who was won an item in a live auction (also see bidder)
buyer tab Usually the buyer must pay immediately for the item they have won. However, some auctions allow the buyer to put down a deposit (perhaps $50 in cash, or a credit card or driver’s license) as a security deposit against the items they plan to win. The items are then stacked up in a location where the buyer can pay for all of them at once, at a later time.
buy-it-now usually refers to a fixed price, that an item can be purchased at immediately by a buyer
consignment store The consignment store is sort of like a flea-market. You register your items for the store and select the price you want to get for the item/lot. The items/lots are available for attendees to peruse and purchase during normal auction hours. Note that at Gen Con you can have 3 different prices for your item - one price for each day (Thursday, Friday, and Saturday). That way you can decide to take less if no one has "snapped up" the item during the first couple of days. Putting items in the consignment store cost less than putting the item up for auction because we don't have to spend valuable auctioneering time selling your item.
consignor A fancy name for the seller of an item.
countdown done by the auctioneer before the item is considered won. Sometimes it might be “going, going, gone” or “last chance…. Going…. Gone” or whatever the personal taste of the auctioneer.
eBay the most famous auction in the world, this is not a live auction, but an auction run on the internet. Differences between this and a live game auction are primarily trifold. First, in a live game auction you can see the auction item for yourself, and if you win the item, you will definitely receive it if you pay for it. Second, an eBay auction is ended based on the time. It is whomever has the highest bid at the time an auction is scheduled to end that wins the item, not whomever is willing to offer the highest price. Third, no shipping charges!
Licensed auctioneer an auctioneer who has passed the requirements by a state auctioneer organization and received a license. Some states require all auctions to be run by a licensed auctioneer, such as Ohio. Licensed auctioneers are usually bonded, and since they are professionals, are extremely capable at obtaining the best price for items.
lot items can be sold either singly or in a lot. A lot would be any grouping of 2 or more items, being offered as one single unit for purposes of sale. A lot can be put in either a consignment store or live auction. If a lot is put into the auction store you should make sure that the items are securely bound together so that they do not become accidently separated.
minimum price/minimum bid Some auctions allow sellers to choose a minimum price, and the auction rules or auctioneer chooses the actual starting bid which may be the same or lower than the sellers minimum.  If the auctioneer starts at a lower price, the minimum bid is treated as a reserve.
reserve An amount the buyer has chosen as the minimum allowable for a bid to be won. If the bid does not reach or exceed this number, the auctioneer may continue the bidding against the reserve, or ask the current winning bidder if they will increase their bid to the reserve.  If the reserve price is not met, then the item is considered unsold.
seller the person putting a gaming item into the live game auction or consignment store

You may want to also read our description of a sample live game auction and consignment store.