One of the more conventional routes to selling a car is to upload a classified advert to a car-selling website or online auction. If you manage to attract some prospective buyers, you can often get a better price than you would trading it in at a dealership.

Placing a classified ad can be a good idea if you can keep the time and money you invest to a reasonable level. Whilst free classified ads might seem like the best way forward then – many sellers have discovered that they’re not always the safest option when selling a car.


Car advertising websites

A quick search of the many classified websites available will probably lead you to two conclusions – the paid sites are expensive, and the free options are so busy that your advert is unlikely to get any visibility whatsoever. 

A paid site will probably be a better option in terms of user experience and security – and will give your ad some much-needed reach. However, there are still no guarantees you’ll make a sale and keeping the ad visible for a long period can get pricey.

On the other hand, if you place a classified ad on a free site, the most likely result is that it will quickly be lost amongst thousands of other adverts.


Making your free classified ad stand out

As you might imagine, free sites are busy and filled with very low-quality posts – and, unlike their paid-for counterparts, there will be little active moderation on the site. So, a well-written advert is likely to stand out against a sea of badly written ones.

Crafting a good advert will take time, but here are some tips that will help you write a compelling classified ad that will hopefully capture the imagination of a buyer:

·      Avoid obvious attempts to be eye-catching, so less ‘***AMAZING CAR FOR SALE!!***’ and more ‘Ford C-Max Manual Car for Sale’

·      Include all the crucial details about your car, including colour, age, mileage etc.

·      Don’t use emojis

·      Check your grammar

·      Avoid spelling errors

·      Try to make your words warm and engaging, if possible

·      Avoid coming across as a potentially difficult seller with lines like ‘don’t haggle with me, the price is what you see’

·      Post clear, high-res images


Ensuring your buyer is trustworthy

As the free car advert sites tend not to have moderators, it means that literally anyone could be using them – often without any vetting or verification. So, just to make sure that your buyer isn’t a bot or a scammer, it is often worth your while to do some of the following:

·      Set up a video call

Video calls will give you and the buyer a better sense of each other and allow you to talk through the sale. To ensure your safety, you should try to use a platform that doesn’t require you to share your phone number – such as Zoom. If the buyer refuses to take part in a video call, it is likely they have something to hide.

·      Ask for their number and address

A legitimate buyer won’t be concerned about sharing these details with you, as they will eventually need to ask you for your personal details to collect and pay for your car. If they are unwilling to give you this information, it’s potentially a bad sign.

·      Talk about payment options

These days, there are several ways to get paid when you sell your car – but bank transfers are the most secure option. If suggesting they pay you via bank transfer leaves your buyer coming up with excuses, or if they want you to accept a cheque instead, you probably need to reconsider the sale.


Why Motorway may be a better option

Classified ads are time-consuming, difficult to get right, and can be potentially expensive and unsafe. Critically, at the end of the day, there are no guarantees that they will help you find a seller.

Selling your car with Motorway is a better option than a classified ad because it is:

·      Free
·      Quick
·      Safe


Motorway is a great way to get a good price for your car – and it’s 100% free for sellers.

All you need to do to get started is to enter your reg and mileage on Motorway’s website to receive an up-to-the-minute estimated sale price for your car. Then, it’s a matter of a few taps of the phone to create a car profile, and you can sell your car for a great price in as little as 24 hours.

Motorway’s daily sales include only verified dealers, so there’s little chance of running into a bot or a scammer. When the sale is complete, the dealer will come and collect your car for free from the location you specify – and they will transfer the money safely and securely into your bank account.


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