The Meaning of OBO: What It Is and How To Use It

This guide will give you all of the knowledge you need on the acronym OBO, including its meaning, usage, sentences, and more!

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What does OBO stand for?

According to Urban Dictionary, OBO means “or best offer.” Cambridge Dictionary states that this abbreviation is used in advertisements or online marketplaces alongside the price of an item someone is trying to sell. This phrase means that the seller is willing to accept less money or a lower price than the asking price if that is all someone is willing to pay. This could also imply that someone is willing to accept bids and get a better offer than the listed price if numerous people are bidding for the item. One might see this phrase on online marketplaces like Craigslist, Ebay, or Facebook Marketplace.

While “or best offer” is the most common meaning for OBO, there are also numerous other meanings for the abbreviation. Abbreviations and The Free Dictionary list many of these. One should take caution when using abbreviations and acronyms to ensure the reader knows exactly what they are using the acronym to mean. Don’t assume someone means “or best offer” – they may be referring to “on behalf of” or any number of other acronyms!

  • On Behalf Of
  • Oboe
  • Observation
  • Open Biomedical Ontologies
  • One by One
  • Overseas Buildings Operations (US Department of State)
  • Oil/Bulk/Ore
  • Owner Buy Out
  • On Basis Of
  • Over-by-Over
  • Oxford Bibliographies Online
  • Our Best Offer
  • Obihiro, Japan (Airport Code)
  • Output Backoff
  • Off By One
  • Official Business Only
  • On Buyout
  • Office of Business Oversight
  • One Ball Only

How is OBO commonly used?

Most often, OBO is used in an item listing or advertisement on an online marketplace like Craigslist, Ebay, Facebook Marketplace, Poshmark, Depop, and others. A seller will place this either next to the price or in the listing to show that they are accepting offers on the item, and that the price listed is not their best and final price; they are willing to accept lower offers and higher bids than the listed full price. A few of these examples are below

  • White Minifridge – Perfect for a College Dorm – Excellent Condition – $40 OBO
  • Vintage 1980s Macintosh Computer – Does Not Work – $200 OBO
  • Mint Condition 1960s Clock – RARE – Like New – $200 OBO
  • Patio Furniture – 1 Table, 4 Chairs, Umbrella – Good Condition – $150 OBO
  • Womens Clothing Lot – Everything New With Tags – 5 Pieces for $50 OBO
  • 1990s VHS Tapes – Everything Must Go! – Working Condition – 10 for $100 OBO
  • *RARE* Super Mario Themed Gameboy Advance – Hard To Find – $200 OBO
  • One of a Kind – World War I Soldier’s Diary – Mint Condition – $1000 OBO

What are other acronyms seen on online marketplaces?

According to Cola Today and Dummies, there are numerous acronyms and phrases that one may use when they are bidding on items online. It may be overwhelming to try and decipher these, but this guide will ensure clarity on the following phrases and acronyms. Buyers and sellers may use these phrases in communication, or in the listing pages of the items they are selling.

  • HTF – Hard to Find -The item is rare.
  • OOP – Out of Print – The item is no longer being produced.
  • F – Following – People on buy and sell groups will comment an “F” on an item they’re interested in but not ready to commit to.
  • NWOT – New Without Tags – The item is new, but does not have the original tags.
  • NWT – New With Tags – The item is brand new with the tags still attached.
  • NR – No Reserve Price – A reserve price is the starting auction price. If the item’s bids do not meet the reserve, this means that the seller does not have to sell the item. If there is no reserve price, the seller must accept the highest offer.
  • OOAK – One of a Kind – The item is the only one in existence.
  • OEM – Original Equipment Manufacture – The item contains all of the original equipment, but may not have the instructions, box, or owner’s manual.
  • ISO – In Search Of – Used by buyers to denote a request or item they are looking for.
  • NOS – New Old Stock – The item is new and unopened, but may have sat on the shelf for a while so the box itself may be worn.
  • COA – Certificate of Authenticity – The item contains proof as to its genuineness.
  • NRFB – Never Removed From Box – The item has never been opened.
  • MOC – Mint on Card – The item is attached to its original display card with original fastenings.
  • MIMB – Mint in Mint Box -The item has never been opened and is in its original factory packaging.
  • MIB – Mint in Box – The item is in its original box and in excellent condition.
  • PPU – Porch Pick Up – Denotes contactless pickup for items.

What are synonyms for OBO?

Power Thesaurus lists numerous different different phrases that can be used in place of OBO. OBO may be the most efficient way for online sellers to denote that they are accepting lower and higher bids, but if someone is speaking to someone else, one of the following phrases may be better suited. 

  • Best bid
  • Best deal
  • Highest bid
  • Outbid
  • Best proposal
  • Best price
  • Highest bidder
  • Right offer
  • Winning bid
  • Highest price

Overall, the acronym OBO stands for “or best offer” in most situations. This is a phrase that is used by online sellers on websites like Craigslist, Ebay, and Facebook Marketplace to denote that they are willing to accept lower and higher offers than the listed price. This is one of many acronyms that online sellers may use in their listings.