When you decide to sell your car privately, you will need to create your own advert.  It is really important that the advert is eye-catching and appealing. Be clear and precise as well as factual to attract the buyer to click your advert over other similar vehicles. Below you’ll find some great tips for advertising your car. 

Taking Photos to Advertise Your Car Well

The most important aspect of your car advert is the photos. This is the first thing a potential buyer sees so they need to spark their interest. 

Before you take any photos, clean the car really well – inside and out. Remove any clutter or personal items that will spoil the photos. 

Make sure the lighting is good.  For professional-looking snaps, this means a few minutes after sunset or a few minutes after sunrise. It’ll give the paintwork a soft glow. If you can’t manage this though, aim for a sunny day and never in the rain. 

A plain background works best as it keeps people’s attention on the car. If your camera has a focus setting that blurs the background, all the better. Use this to make your car stand out more 

When taking the photos you want the images to be clear and show off the car – not your photography skills. Photographing the car at eye level, gives the potential buyer a good idea of what the car looks like in real life. 

Take a good selection of photos. Keep the whole car in the shot unless highlighting specific areas for detail.   

As a general rule, if you are advertising online, the more photos in your advertisement the better.  So try and take the following photos of your car:

  1. Front straight-on
  2. Back straight-on
  3. Side profile(s)
  4. Close-up of a wheel, especially if they are alloys
  5. The dashboard
  6. Front and rear seats and the interior
  7. Inside the boot
  8. The engine compartment
  9. Any damage to your car (this shows the buyer you are an honest seller)
  10. With a convertible, take a picture with the roof down and one with the roof up

If you are advertising in print then always choose the best exterior photograph of your car. 

Advertising your car honestly

When it comes to writing the description make it clear, concise, factual and eye-catching.  Tell the truth about everything.  If you have a misleading advert, the buyer will think you’re untrustworthy and walk away.

Remember that honesty builds trust!

Start with the basic information – the cars make, model, colour, engine size and trim. If you are unsure of these details you’ll find them on your V5C certificate (log book) so refer to that if you need to. 

Describe and explain the best features of your car e.g. low mileage, number of previous owners (if any), any modifications or extras such as air conditioning, sunroof etc. 

State how long is left on the MOT – if there is time left. 

Details like the car’s service history – regular servicing and (if true) that a main dealer has done these  will always help you fetch a higher price than a similar one without.

Don’t be too heavy on the adjectives either. Aim for around 50 to 75 words for online adverts and 20 to 30 words for print.

Set your price!

Pricing your car is the most important part. Remember you generally need to price it for less than a dealer would sell it for.  To help you get an idea of its value have a look at similar cars for sale on the internet and their asking prices. Search for similar vehicles on One Woman Owner to see how much they are going for. You can also use a car valuation tool online.

You could also contact some online car buyers and ask how much they would pay for your car. 

If you are advertising in print or on a site like One Woman Owner then it is sensible to add a few hundred pounds to the asking price. This will give you some room for negotiation, buyers will always offer lower than the initial asking price. Be prepared to haggle and the buyer will feel as if they’ve got a bargain.

If you are selling on an auction site, set your reserve low as possible to encourage bids. Sundays are a good day to end your auction as people are not at work and have the time to bid.  

Sell it!

Now you have all the tips and advice to create a winning advert to sell your car for hopefully the best possible price.

Good Luck!

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