Free Auction News & Reviews | Volume #7 | November 2005
Auction Spotlight - CQOut Worth A Visit This Christmas

CQout ( has been around since 1999 and describes itself as the second largest auction site in the UK. From the outset, the company has worked on a ‘no sale, no fee’ basis with no listing charges. CQout has grown through word of mouth, direct marketing and PR to create a business which has an excellent reputation amongst those that know of it, but which is not yet a household name.

CQout has seen many online auction sites come and go, and it’s easy these days to set up an auction site ‘out of the box’. But maintaining and developing that site in the face of changing patterns of internet use, data security issues, and increasingly ingenious attempted frauds is a different matter. What so many entrants to the auction market fail to recognise is that even though the auction process can be automated, the need for real, effective and prompt customer service and support is actually even greater in the online auction arena than in a ‘conventional’ business…and customer support is where CQout really scores, with a real (local rate) telephone number that connects with a real person on the other end and a genuine willingness to ‘go the extra mile’ in helping those new to CQout to get established and start making sales.

What makes CQout different from many other auction-sites is that they've built in security features from the very beginning. While anyone can browse the site, users must register with a credit card before buying or selling. CQout runs a one pound charge through the credit card to validate the card.

The one pound registration fee goes to one of CQout's partner charities, specified by the user. The fee enables the company to validate the credit card in real time. CQout does not allow user names to change once they have been set up and associated with a specific address and credit card. If a user accumulates three negative ratings, CQout suspends them from trading and investigates further.

Perhaps the best way of summing up CQout comes from a new CQout user who in January 2005 emailed CQout’s Auctionmaster with the following:

“I cannot believe it has taken me so long to discover this site. After two years of trading on eBay and realising all the scams, extortionate fees, monopoly, appalling customer service and the fact that they are geared around hooking more users in and not looking after long-standing customers, I think I may have found the answer.”

Is CQout the nimble chimpanzee to eBay’s 800 lb gorilla? In the UK, it just might be if enough people decide that it’s worth giving CQout a go.

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