Proxy Bidding is the most commonly used method of bidding on online auctions. It takes your bid amount to be the highest amount you are willing to pay for an auction, while making the minimum possible bid it can when the bid is initially placed. Then, as other users attempt to outbid your current bid level, the proxy system will kick in and immediately outbid the other user IF their bid is lower than or equal to your maximum. This helps eliminate "sniping" by allowing you to set a maximum bid level that other users do not know, and therefore can't outbid in the last few seconds of an auction. It also provides a sort of safety barrier so you only need to place one bid for the maximum you are willing to pay on a piece, and not worry about having to manually outbid other users to that price. Each time a proxy bid is made for you, it will be in the lowest acceptable bid ABOVE the last bidder's attempt. Often times other bidders will attempt to work your proxy up to its limit until they barely outbid you, this process is known as 'bumping'. FurBuy offers e-mail notification for both outbid and 'bumping' of your proxy bid.
Note: Proxy bids compete with the Reserve Price (if set in an auction), meaning that if you place a Proxy Bid that's higher than the Reserve, the Current Bid Price will immediately jump to the Reserve Price. Remember that the purpose of the Proxy Bid system is to say how much you're willing to pay for the item - don't ever bid any amount if you're unwilling to pay that amount.
Direct Bidding is a more simplified method of bidding in online auction systems. When you place a Direct Bid, the system raises the current current bid price of the auction to the exact amount of the bid. Unlike Proxy Bidding, which only bids the minimum amount UP TO your bid, Direct Bidding immediately bids at the price you specify. Direct Bids are very useful in Ladder Auctions so you may take your bid directly up to a ladder level specified in the auction description. Note, however, that Direct Bids and Proxy Bids can be used in the same auction. If you place a Direct Bid, you may still be automatically outbid by another bidder's Proxy Bid if a higher one is in effect. In this case, feel free to keep bidding.