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Thursday, January 5, 2012

The Basic Craigslist Car Ad

I have found a lot of ads on Craigslist that contain little or no information about the car for sale. Some even forget to put the year of the car in the ad! You know what I do when I see ads like that? I don’t even bother reading them, I click back and go to the next. This post is to help you post a basic ad, so people know everything they need to about the car you are trying to sell. You will save minutes answering questions on the phone. There are also ads that people have scrambled all the information into one long paragraph. This makes the reader seems as if its too much work to read it all. If you do things in tinier paragraphs or at least skip a line from time to time it will be much easier on the readers eyes.
Let’s start off with a good title. I will use my car as an example: 1995 Chevrolet Blazer
As you are creating your ad, make sure you post your car in cars & trucks – by owner.
Your ad should be basic and neat, with the year, make, model, price, city, and state in the title. (see below)

In the next bigger box will need to be filled in with all the information of the car including once again the year, make, model, and price. Here is a list of things you will need to know about your vehicle in order to post a detailed and informed ad:
Year, make, model, base, engine size, and transmission.
Example: 1995 Chevy Blazer LS, 4.3 vortec V6, automatic transmission
Clean or salvage title, miles on the dash, and tags/smog info.
Example: Clean title, 192,000 miles, tags paid til 2012, passed smog (enter date)
Power or manual windows and locks? A/C and heater work? Mention interior rips or stains or say if it is clean, same for the paint. Tilt wheel? Power steering? Power or heated seats? Alarm? Sound system? Towing packages or roof racks? Stock rims or aftermarket? Tires good or need replaced?(list all extras in the add, as well as recent tune ups, oil changes and new or replaced parts)
List any problems with the car. Does it have any lights such as a check engine or abs light on?
Example: “ABS light is on”
“AC does not work; need to be recharged.”
“Interior light does not work; needs bulb”
“Does not pass smog; needs (part)”
At some point in the add, explain why your are selling or trading, and if you are wanting to trade, say so.
Example: “Selling/Trading because I need a car that’s better on gas”
“No trades” if you do not want to trade.
“Partial trades only” (means you will not trade straight across, you want cash on top; which usually does not happen)
(Optional: list a few cars or kind of vehicles you are looking to trade for)
Example: “Would like to trade for a Saturn, Honda or gas saving car”
Most importantly, put your contact information. If you don’t want people to e-mail you (optional, but recommended) because of large amount of scam lately, make sure you check “hide” under your e-mail address under the title box.
Contact Jilian. (555) 555-5555 Call or text (for cell phones)
Contact Jilian (555) 555-5555 Calls only (home phones)
If you do not have picture messaging, say so. Many people just assume you do.
Your ad should now look something like this:

 You can now add some pictures you took of your vehicle. If you haven’t already taken some, go do it now. You can only add four, but take many and decide which look best and choose four. Best pictures are one from the side, one from the front, and one or two of the inside. Try not to get your license plate in the picture or edit it out with paint.
If you are more advanced with computers, you can add larger pictures to show greater details. See my blog Advanced Craigslist Car Ad tips.
Next, click continue and review your ad. If you like what you see, continue. Another tip is that if you type up all your info and refresh the Craigslist ad page, all that you typed will be lost. It’s best if you type it all out on a .txt doc first so you will not lose all of your information.
I hope all of your ads are successful! E-mail me with any questions you have at


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