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When you first start the process of selling your car, you may be shocked to find how competitive the market is. This means that potential buyers have a very wide choice. In order to be sure of selling your car, and getting the best price, you have to do more than just put it on the market and sit back — you have to do everything possible to get ahead of the competition.

Understand The Market

Your first step is to understand the market for your particular car — for instance, whether it is a popular model which is in high demand, or whether it is a less fashionable make, which could fetch a lower price. In addition, you should be aware of the specific market for your type of car. For instance, if it is a family sedan or SUV, you will be targeting a different type of buyer from the type you would be targeting for a sports car.

How To Set The Price

The particular market for your car will help you determine the price, but there are other factors involved as well. In fact, deciding on the price is one of the hardest parts of selling a car,  as you want to get as much as you can, without putting people off by overpricing. As a starting point, you can use the Nada Gold Book or the Kelley Blue book, which are available in libraries or online. These will give you a guide as to the going rate for a car of your make and year, but remember that the price will be affected by other things, including the car’s condition and mileage.

Car key and dollars

Benefits Not Features

When advertising your car, you still need to bear in mind how competitive the market is, and remember the principle that it is benefits, not features, that sell. So don’t major on the car’s specifications, though you can include them for people who want to know. Try to identify a USP (unique selling point), and emphasize that, plus any other selling points that put it ahead of the competition. When you have identified its particular selling points — low mileage, excellent condition, reliable, very fuel efficient — turn them into benefits for the purchaser, and emphasize those in your ad. For instance, a reliable car gives you peace of mind.

Selling a car is full of uncertainties, and can be quite anxiety-provoking. Your aim is to make it a quick, not a long-drawn-out process, and to make it as positive an experience as possible for the buyer as well as yourself. Applying the secrets of selling which prevail everywhere else will put you well ahead of most of the market.


Jayne is a professional content writer who specializes in business, finance, automotive and marketing subjects.