Free car advertising websites
You can sell your car fast with Motorway. We work with a nationwide network of 5,000+ verified dealers to find our best offer for your car. It’s quick, easy, and it takes seconds to start.
If you are determined to go down a more conventional route, however, you’ll probably be considering uploading a car advert somewhere. While this does require you to run the gauntlet of internet strangers, the stress that comes from selling privately can sometimes get you a better return than trading your car in at a dealership. So long as you can keep the time and money you invest to a reasonable level, you can often sell your car for a fairly good price within a decent timeframe. It’s that money bit, in particular, where some sellers might find themselves caught out.
Completely free car advertising sites — do they exist?
A quick internet search for car advertising will probably leave you with two conclusions: the paid options are expensive, and the free car advertising sites are usually too busy to allow you to get any engagement with potential buyers. While opting for a paid site will probably give you a better experience so far as platform, reach, and security goes, that’s not to say you can’t find a buyer using free car advertising websites. It might just take a long time and you’ll probably have a few false starts along the way. Plus, while you might get a few benefits with a paid site – ignoring the high cost of the advertisement itself – the actual work you’ll be required to put in remains the same. This includes:
- Writing a car profile
- Photographing your car
- Responding to buyer queries
- Meeting potential buyers
- Taking them for a test drive
- Arranging secure payment for your car
Where to run free ads for your car
There are plenty of free websites where you can advertise your car. However, because they are free, most of them are extremely busy, and getting any exposure for your car amid thousands of other adverts can often be problematic.
Some of them are dedicated car-selling sites — a quick internet search will bring those up for you — but it’s always worth remembering that an interested buyer could be just about anywhere. So, before you go adding your car to a car-selling site you’ve never previously visited, it might be worth placing your car advert on the following:
- Social media marketplaces such as Facebook Marketplace
- Local free listing sites or apps such as Nextdoor
- Classified sites for your town or city like Gumtree
- Local newspaper sites if free ad space is possible
How to create free car advertising posts that stand out
As you may imagine, free sites suffer from a lot more low-quality posts, as there is unlikely to be much moderation of the site, especially compared to paid-for platforms which have teams working behind the scenes. That makes it doubly as important to make sure your post isn’t getting lost in all the noise. A quality, trustworthy post should help your advert stand out against a sea of poorly written ones. Crafting a good advert will take time, but here are some tips on how to keep your free car advertising post looking legitimate:
- Avoid obvious attempts to be eye-catching, so less “***AMAZING CAR FOR SALE!!***” and more “Peugeot 208 Allure 1.2L Manual Car for Sale”
- Include all the crucial details about your car, including colour, age, mileage etc.
- Don’t use emojis
- Use correct English
- Avoid grammar and spelling errors
- Don’t come across as a potentially difficult seller with lines like “don’t haggle with me, the price is what you see”
- Post clear, high-quality images
- Avoid watermarking your images — you may think this appears more trustworthy, but it can just make you look like you’ve stolen the images from elsewhere
On the topic of haggling, no matter how annoying you may find it, it’s a reality of selling your car privately. In fact, it might be a key reason why your would-be buyer has chosen this route over going to a second-hand dealer. Just as you may get a better price by having your buyer come direct to you, they may also expect a bit more flexibility in return. After all, you probably need your old car off your drive far more than they need it on theirs!
Making sure your buyer is trustworthy
Like we said, free car advertising websites probably don’t have the teams of moderators of their paid counterparts. That means if someone wants to get in contact with you, it’s likely much easier for them to start the correspondence, maybe even without needing to verify or create an account. So, just as you need to prove to buyers that you are a trustworthy seller, the reverse is true. Some things you can do to see if your buyer isn’t just a bot or a scammer include:
Setting up a video call
These leave the buyer little room to hide, but if you want to ensure total safety on your end, set up the call on a platform that doesn’t require you to share your number.
Consider using an entirely new email
Emails are quick, easy, and free to create, so consider making a new one to place on your ad and to receive buyer messages. Once your car is sold, you can delete it, ensuring you don’t have to worry about future spam. You’ll be surprised how long posts can stay active online, so even years from now, a scammer, bot, or just not very attentive person could email again asking about your car.
Ask for their number and address
A legitimate buyer won’t have any trouble in sharing these details with you, as they will eventually need to ask you for your own personal details to collect and pay for your car. If something doesn’t add up when you request a location or number, it’s a good sign that a buyer isn’t trustworthy.
Talk about payment options
There are a few ways to get paid when you sell your car, but a bank transfer remains the most secure. If this suggestion leaves your buyer coming up with excuses, or if they are desperately trying to get you to accept a cheque or cash instead, you should consider it a red flag.
Or…choose the Motorway way
If the most important part of selling your car for you is being able to do it for free, then there’s a better way — the Motorway way! It’s 100% free to sell your car with us, and because our dealer network includes only verified expert dealers, there’s no chance of running into a bot or a scammer. All we need is your reg and mileage to provide you with a valuation. Then, it’s a matter of a few taps of the phone to create a car profile, and you can sell your car in as little as 24 hours!
Our car guides cover everything you need to know about selling your car!
Top 10 tips to sell your car
How to sell a car with free collection
Should you sell your diesel car?
Should I sell my hybrid car?
Top 5 ways to sell a car
Companies that buy cars
How to sell your van online