Where to Advertise a Vehicle

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Figuring out where to advertise your old car or truck is a crucial step in the selling process. While the Internet has simplified the process, you'll still need to make sure you list your vehicle with a detailed description and good photos on a reputable classified service to attract potential buyers.

Online Advertising

Listing your car or truck online is one of the best ways to advertise your vehicle to thousands of consumers all over the United States.

Below are just a few examples of the reputable sites you'll want to consider as you weed through the options.

eBay Motors

One of the largest selections of classified ads, eBay will let you choose to sell your vehicle either locally or nationally. The auction format is popular among buyers, but can be risky for sellers who would like a fixed amount for their vehicle. You can also choose to set either a:

  • Reserve price (i.e. the minimum purchase price).
    OR
  • Fixed amount if auctioning isn't to your liking.

Cars.com

Owned by a conglomerate of newspaper groups, Cars.com is a giant among car listings and is a good place to advertise. Alternative selling options are also available, including offers from dealers, which will allow you to:

  • Compare up to 4 offers.
  • Avoid price haggling.
  • Get legitimate offers from buyers all over the country.
  • Sell your vehicle quickly (average sell time is generally within 3 to 8 weeks).

Autotrader.com

Autotrader claims to have more ads for used cars than any other website in the U.S., which can be either good or bad depending on how you look at it. On the one hand, the ad you'll create will be fairly detailed, which takes more time to set up—but can help to filter potential buyers who aren't that serious. One other benefit of this site is that it also advertises your vehicle on its partnered sites, which could include television and radio campaigns at no additional charge.

Kelley Blue Book

Known as a top source for car pricing guides, Kelley Blue Book also lists used cars for sale on its website. The process is pretty simple and will allow you to reach a multitude of potential buyers. Other selling options offered through the site include:

  • Instant offers.
    • Get a cash offer or a trade-in value that can be redeemed at a local dealer.
  • Social media.
    • The site uses Facebook to help find buyers in your area, and will even create window stickers to promote the car while you're out driving around.

Craigslist

Craigslist is a popular route if you want to sell your car without paying additional fees. Since it's a “for sale by owner" site, it's free and should definitely be considered. On the downside, building the ad is left up to you, and listings are often fairly unorganized.

Print Advertising

Though traditional advertising methods have lost some luster in recent years, print listings should not be discounted.

A few options you should consider include the following.

“For Sale" Window Signs

If you're still driving the vehicle you're planning to sell, putting a sign in the window will get you more attention than you might think. A number of the people you pass while you commute to work or run errands will likely be in the market for a car. It's also really easy and free.

On your ad, make sure to include:

  • A contact number.
  • The make, model, and year of the vehicle.
  • Your asking price.

Local Newspapers

The automotive section of your local newspaper will still get plenty of looks and shouldn't be discounted. Space for print ads is usually limited and you may not be able to include photos, so make sure to include all the essential information only and save the other details for later.

Newspapers also tend to reach people in higher income brackets, so it may be a good option if you're selling a higher-priced vehicle.

Other Free Publications

There aren't as many as there used to be, but free publications for used car ads are still around. Whether it's at the grocery store or in the lobby of your local service station, these ads are popular options for buyers in the market for a car.

The next time you see one of these publications while running your errands, pick up a copy. Information for how to list your vehicle will be included.

Magazines

Some car magazines will place used car ads in the back sections. Check the automotive section at your local bookstore and see which publications run ads. Keep in mind that these listings are often reserved for collector vehicles.

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