Creating an effective ad

First things first, writing no description at all is basically saying I am not serious about selling my car. Even if you are not a person who cares about information we can guarantee your buyers do.

Creating an effective ad can go a long way to ensuring a successful sale. The advertisement is your first point of contact with potential buyers, so keep it short and simple ... and be honest. The ad must stand out from the crowd.

There are three main components to a successful ad that if followed properly will greatly increase the speed at which your car is sold These are:

  • The inclusion and quality of a vehicle description
  • The inclusion and quality of vehicle photos
  • The realistic and accurate pricing for the vehicle

What is the story of the vehicle?

This is a chance to stand out from the crowd. Why is your vehicle better than the others and what is unique about it? Why is yours slightly more expensive than others listed that look the same? Always start the description with the unique information, not generic. The unique information includes things such as: 

  • Any extra features added that are not standard on that model
  • Has it always be garaged?
  • One owner from new
  • What sort of use has it had. I.e a 4x4 that has not been off road and incurred that wear and tear
  • Number of owners
  • Time since last service
  • How often you service the car (logbook / service history)
  • Any items that have been purchased recently, i.e. tyres
  • Any enhancements that you have made, i.e. stereo
  • Special interior features, i.e. leather, wooden dash
  • Extra safety features
  • Does it have low kilometres for its age?
  • Be specific about the condition (if it has been inspected, mention the findings)
  • Time left on registration
  • Time left on warranty
  • Why you are selling it
  • If it is an urgent sale or not
  • If you are willing to travel to show people (if so, how far?)
  • The times you are available for a test drive / inspection (do not include your address)
  • And anything else that you love about your car – what features attracted you to buy the car originally?
Try not to use generalised statements like "lots of added features"; instead list the added features out in full.

Make sure that you don't lie about the car's condition but do include all the plus points such as one owner, always garaged etc. Buyers love photos so try to include as many as you can.

Make sure the ad is a realistic representation of the car. Potential buyers aren't going to hang around if the car is nothing like the ad, and you could do without your time wasted as well.

Make sure you are as descriptive as possible with the make and model of the car, year model, colour and the kilometres it has done. Also, be sure to mention if the car has any extras fitted, as they can be extra tempters to a buyer.

With internet ads, make sure you show as much of the car as possible. Pictures are worth their weight in gold when advertising a used car. Clear and sharp photos will provide a better impression than a description alone - and the more the better.

And don't hide the car's faults in photos - buyers will feel better about dealing with you if you are honest and open. It'll save them time - and you. Below are some examples of bad descriptions followed by good.

Poor descriptions

Sample of poor vehicle details

 These descriptions say nothing specifically individual about the vehicle and are vague or generic.

Good description 

Good vehicle description

This description tells the story of the vehicle. It distinguishes what makes it different to another of its make and model. This is the Added Value that will attract the buyer’s attention to enquire. N.B When the search and browse results are displayed, only the first 240 characters of the description are displayed. Therefore the first 240 characters need to be unique in order to draw the viewers attention to then entice them to find out more information.

Note: If a potential buyer sends you an email, it is critical that you reply quickly to keep them interested; which will increase the chances of you making the sale. So make sure you are checking your email regularly. This is just as important for your phone messages.

Sell Your Car


Create an ad from just $55

  • Regional Australia's #1 auto classified site
  • 10 photos in search and browse summary
  • Run until sold
  • Free car window sticker
  • Unlimited words
  • Unlimited changes

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