Most folks aren’t getting the best value when selling their used cars simply because they don’t know any better!
The single most important element in selling your car is marketing it correctly. You want to portray your car in the best possible light so that online buyers know what it is that they’re buying.
Think of your car as a fashion model. Would you photograph that model with a backdrop of power lines in an alley and other junk, or would you position her out on the beach with the picturesque ocean in the background? Would you do close-up photographs of a new pimple on her chin, or would you zoom in on her eyes instead?
The goal is to make your customer feel like he knows what the car is truly like. To do that you must take at least 60 quality photos in specific areas.
Now that I have you thinking about it, here are some things to consider:
Prepare Your Car
– Wash and wax your car
– Thoroughly clean windows and wheels
– Degrease the engine compartment
– Throw out any junk inside
– Vacuum out the interior
– Clean any stains from the carpets and seats
– Clean out the trunk
Stage Your Car For Its Photo Shoot
– Move the car into an open area (an enclosed garage makes for junky pictures). A park or school parking lot can work but it is better to find a pleasant background as you compose your marketing pictures.
– Make sure there are no other vehicles in the background so that the focus is entirely on what you are selling and not on the noise in the background.
– Double check to make sure there is nothing junky in the background of your shot like garbage dumpsters, bikes, power lines, etc.
– Shoot crisp, properly lighted digital photos (All you need is about 72 dpi resolution. Any more resolution results in much larger image files and offers nothing for the online buyers.)
– When shooting problem areas, like rust or dents, make sure you include a non-rusted area in the shot.
– Watch the lighting! Make sure your shot is full of light so that you aren’t shooting shadows. If you can’t get light then move the car, get artificial lights or wait for a brighter time of day.
– The number of shots you take will be determined by the type of vehicle you are selling. For example, a 2-seater requires fewer shots than an SUV simply because there are less doors and seats.
– Manually turn on your camera’s flash system so that the light backfills dark areas. This is crucial when shooting the engine compartment and undercarriage.
– When taking your shots, make sure you fill the frame of the photograph so that it is mostly a picture of your car. Your focus is on the car, so don’t take any of those long distance shots where you can’t make out much detail.
The Money Shots – the number in parentheses shows about how many photos to take for a 2-seater.
– (4) Shoot all four corners at 45 degree angles to the car. Shooting downward from a ladder or chair gives your pictures a unique viewpoint and also lets you eliminate much of the background “noise”.
– (10) Crouch down and shoot 5 pictures across the front starting at a 45 degree corner shot, then straight on corner, then middle, then other straight corner and other 45 degree corner shots. Repeat for the rear.
– (4) Shoot wheels
– (2) Shoot down length of car to show body straightness on each side
– (6) Shoot engine compartment from all angles
– (2) Shoot trunk straight on and from 45 degree angle
– (3) Rear seat compartment.
– (3) Dashboard. Straight on from driver seat, middle and passenger seat.
– (6) Open door. Shoot the hinge, door jamb and the door sill for each door.
– (2) Shoot the door panels with the doors open
– (4) Open the doors and shoot the front seats.
– (2) Console between the front seats.
– (2) Pedals and floor wear areas.
– (5) Undercarriage. Shoot exhaust, brakes and frame.