6 Tips on Selling Cars Online for Beginners

Marc Skirvin
Marc Skirvin

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As of now, the U.S. automobile market is worth a staggering $61 billion. Thanks to the internet, selling your car is easy as posting the car’s photos online and getting several prospective buyers. However, in practice, selling your car online isn’t as easy as you’d think. 

If you want to sell your car and get a reasonable price for it, your best option is to sell it online. Selling cars online is a breeze, but only if you know your stuff. That said, the million-dollar question becomes, how do you sell your car online?

A better question would be, how do you sell your car online and actually find a buyer? Finding a prospective buyer online is where things get a tad tricky.

In this post, we’ll be highlighting a couple of tips on how you can sell your car online, even if it’s your first time.

1. Clean Your Car

You don’t need an article to tell you to clean your car before you put it up on sale. You want your car to make an excellent first impression. It can’t do that when there are mud stains all over the exterior and all kinds of clutter inside the car.

Before you list it for sale online, make sure you

  • Clear all trash and other personal items
  • Throw in some air freshener, in case some buyers might want a closer look
  • Wash the car’s exterior 
  • Wax the exterior for some extra appeal
clean your car

The above should suffice to make your car look all nice and pretty. Remember, even if you have a beast of an engine, no one will buy it if it’s ugly and stinky. It’s no secret; a spotless car is easier to sell than a grimy one.

2. Get Your Paperwork Ready

If you’ve already put up your car online, you’ll start receiving plenty of calls from prospective buyers. However, you shouldn’t get too excited because there’s still a long journey ahead. Before you can receive any cash, you need to get your paperwork in order.

The paperwork proves that the car is yours and that it’s registered with the DMV. When it comes to paperwork, you’ll need the following documents.

Apart from these, you’ll also need documents specific to your state. These documents vary from state to state, so ensure you confirm with the local authorities before contacting prospective buyers.

3. Know Your Car Inside Out

Once you get calls from prospective buyers, most of them will have tons of questions regarding your car. To avoid the embarrassment of not knowing anything about your car, you better do your homework. You don’t have to be a gear head; you only need to have the basics on lock.

Make sure you know it’s gas mileage, how many transmission speeds it has, and the car’s engine. Also, learn more about the car’s safety features, cargo hold, history of repairs, and the likes. When it comes to your car, the more you know, the better for you.

Remember to be honest and realistic about your car. Don’t think the buyer hasn’t done their own research on the car.

4. Research on the Price

Although you want the best price for your car, it’s ridiculous to think you can sell your Prius for $80,000. That said, it’s essential to do some homework on your car’s price so that you can sell it at a reasonable price.  After doing so, you can sell it at a fair car price.

You don’t want to price your car too high, or no one will want to buy it. You also don’t want to sell it too low, or you’ll make less money on the deal. Striking the perfect balance between a high and low price is crucial to selling your car.

research car prices

All you have to do is go online to know the right price to sell your car. Check out listings and find out how much your car’s model goes for. Don’t forget to check out stuff like the mileage and the year of manufacture while doing so.

5. No Slacking on the Pictures

The phrase pictures are worth a thousand words takes a whole new meaning when it comes to online car shopping. Since potential buyers can’t see your car, you need to use pictures to reel them in. That’s why you need to pay keen attention to the pictures for your car listing.

Apart from taking nice pictures of your vehicle, make sure you’re also as thorough as you can. The prize is in the details. 

Make sure you get the dashboard, headlights, and tires so the buyers can inspect for wear and tear.  When taking dashboard lights for the buyers, always turn on the car, so the buyer can assess any warning lights that may indicate engine problems.

6. Have a Detailed Ad

Since you can’t speak for yourself on car listings, let your ad speak. As such, your ad must be as detailed as possible. A detailed ad instills confidence in the buyer, but be careful not to overdo it. You want your ad to be as brief and concise as possible.

Here are a couple of vital things you should include in your ad:-

  • The make, model, and YOM
  • The car’s gas mileage
  • How many miles it has
  • Your asking price
  • Contact information

The above is enough for a detailed ad. Don’t forget to have lots of stunning pictures to top it off.

Selling Cars Online Is a Breeze

Selling cars online shouldn’t feel like a hit and miss endeavor. With the above tips, selling your car online will be a piece of cake. However, if your car won’t sell, you can always get a bit of help.

Here at Cashautosalvage, we’ll help you sell your car in no time. If you need help selling your car, contact us today, and we’ll sort you out.

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About the Author


Marc is the Co-Founder of Cash Auto Salvage and Director of daily operations. He retired from a leading Internet Marketing company in 2013 and has been involved in the automotive industry ever since.

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