I just flew to La Guardia from O’Hare. It is spring break so the plane was full. The United agent tried to persuade two people to take a later flight. Initially, she offered $300. No-one took the bait. She upped the ante to $400. Still no volunteers. Then, she raised the stakes to $400 plus a first class seat.
Maybe no-one was willing to delay their trip. Or perhaps now the blandishment was ever increasing, people were waiting for the better deal.
Obvious solution is to give insurance: if the deal gets better, the people who bit first get the better deal too.