Sneaker Bots: Everything You Need To Know

You won’t find a guide on how to use sneaker bots here. If you are looking for this, you better be closing this page right now.

Friends, today we want to talk about a heavily discussed topic that divides the sneaker community. At the beginning, we want to tell you that we really don’t like sneaker bots and don’t want to have anything to do with them. Be sure to read the following article, you might understand why this is the case then. Let’s go.

The sneaker and streetwear culture is one of the few industries where it is common for the customer – in this case the sneakerhead – to assume that he cannot regularly buy something, even though he has both the money and the intention to buy the item. We all know the feeling when you want to buy the latest Yeezys but just can’t load the site. After hours you then get confronted with the sober truth: Sold out.

10 minutes later these kicks are already offered on eBay or other reseller platforms. How can that be? Who buys all these sneakers and can then sell several pairs online at a higher price?

Of course, there are many buyers who were simply lucky and bought the sneakers again because they wanted to wear the sneakers themselves. But there are also always “bad apples” who only buy the sneakers in order to sell them afterwards at a higher price. In principle, this is not condemnable – if solely fair means would be used. But many professional buyers use bots to cop the grails. This makes the game unfair, because one player is simply cheating.

Bots artificially manipulate and simply dominate the market. This means that real sneakerheads cannot buy the coveted sneakers regularly and have to go to reseller platforms and buy the sneaker for a multiple of the original price. So it is understandable that some sneakerheads are just annoyed and angry. One can understand that.

What Are Sneaker Bots?

Sneaker bots are programs that automatically buy exclusive sneakers as soon as the sneakers go online. These programs run on extremely fast servers, which have an incredible internet connection and put the sneaker in the shopping cart within a matter of seconds and then buy it. This happens so fast that the bots have already bought the shoes before you have even loaded the page.

Meanwhile there are so many bots and bot users that it is almost impossible to buy an extremely hyped sneaker without a bot. In fact, it’s so extreme that even with a bot, there is no guarantee that you will get a sneaker. How should it then be possible to buy a sneaker by hand? The sneaker bot community wants to keep this information secret, so that the market doesn’t get destroyed. But we know that real sneaker bots work with different IP addresses, different locations, different accounts and different technologies.

Sneaker Bot Costs

One the one hand, many cheap scripts are already available, but they hardly offer any added value. On the other hand, there are also extremely expensive sneaker bots, which were developed for one paticular release on a certain website and only work for that special release. So it is not unusual for a script to cost more than €500 – with no guarantee that it will work in the end.

As you can recognise, a separate business field has grown around the sneaker hype, which is only concerned with the fact that sneakerheads want to satisfy their addiction.

What Do The Big Retailers Do Against Sneaker Bots?

First of all, you should realise that sneaker bots actually only play into the hands of the brands. If sneakers are sold out immediately and the site crashes, then this causes an even bigger hype. We assume that it is deliberate PR when a site crashes – at least for some brands. The big brands definitely have enough resources to build up their server structure in such a way that these servers can withstand the onslaught, and yet we regularly see crashing shops.

Besides, the brands are mainly interested in reaching the numbers. So it doesn’t actually matter who buys the sneakers in the end. The main point is that they pay. We call that a win-win – but only for the sneaker brands: Creating hype and reaching numbers.

The retailers and brands could simply avoid revealing a specific date and launch the sneakers at an unknown time. If you are lucky enough to stumble across the site, you can get the sneakers – or of course you can use our Grailify app, then we will inform you about possible surprise drops.

Isn’t it a pity that less and less people in front of the sneaker shops are sitting and waiting for their grails with folding chairs, blankets and thermos flasks? That way, you could really earn the sneakers and it was something special when you were able to get them. It was also possible to make friends with other sneakerheads. Yes, real sneakerheads!

Nowadays, a lot of things happen digitally and the big retailers don’t really do anything about it. The customer is king – even if the customer is a bot.

The big brands and retailers are publicly stating that they are trying to fight the bots, but we do not see any further development and counter measures. Often enough the sites still crash and the sneakers are sold out in the end. All the captcha requests or forms before the actual purchase are no obstacle for the bots as well. Professional bots find backdoors on every website and can, for example, put the sneakers into a shopping cart days before the purchase, even though the sneakers have officially not been released yet. As soon as the sneakers are available, the bot only has to press “buy”.

Currently, only the Nike SNKRS app is supposed to be pretty secure against bots. However, this is only the information that is publicly known. Maybe there are some programmers who have made it nevertheless and don’t want to make a fuss about it. Who knows.

Some sneaker dealers counterattack and make fun of it by offering the sneakers for 10.000 Euro and just wait for the “stupid” bots to enter the credit card data without checking the price first. The description then says something like: “Only bots buy this offer”. In the end, the money is refunded and nobody has to pay any damage. This is a nice story, but it does not solve the problem. We can only assume that the sneaker bots will develop very quickly and become even better.

Our Conclusion on Sneaker Bots

As already mentioned, we don’t want to have anything to do with sneaker bots. We think that they are just unfair and simply destroy the whole sneaker culture. Every sneakerhead should have the same chances to buy a sneaker. Normal methods should be used which do not make other users look worse. That was also the reason why we developed our Grailify app and made it available for free to everyone.

So it is official: If you are using a sneaker bot, GTFO.

Are There Any News About Sneaker Bots in 2020?

In the meantime, a whole year has passed since the publication of this article and we think that the shops are already actively doing something against the bots. Okay, “doing something” is perhaps a bit exaggerated and optimistic, but the retailers are more or less trying to avoid the bots.

In the last 365 days it felt like the number of active sneaker bots has doubled. The Ws are getting rarer and rarer and more and more sneakerheads and hypebeasts are annoyed about the defeat against the computer programs. That’s why we see more and more so-called raffles from the shops. A raffle is a kind of lottery, where the users can register. After the registration period, the lucky winners are drawn at random by the respective shops and are notified.

Raffles are offered especially for the most popular sneakers. The Ben & Jerry’s x Nike SB Dunk Low “Chunky Dunky” for example was only released by Nike. At the other shops you can only win the shoes. We expect that the number of raffles will increase in the future. Retailers side with the true sneakerheads and avoid the soulless bots.

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