Great Descriptions


Great, you’ve enticed a potential buyer in with great photos, now you need to really sell the vehicle with a strong description. It’s important to note that 71% of buyers are put off by poor descriptions, but getting it right can help drive Full Page Advert View’s (FPAV’s) – and ultimately more visits to your forecourt. 


So how do you achieve that and what are potential buyers looking for? Here, we’ll take a look at the key things you can do with wording to make your ad appeal the most. 


Example features, ranked by car buyers in terms of importance

Full service history

Low mileage

High miles per gallon

Low/ free road tax

Sat nav / Bluetooth

Xenon headlights

‘Ideal first car’ 


Reliability and running costs go hand in hand. A more reliable car will be cheaper to run in the long term and 58% of buyers say that this is their number one priority when buying a used car. So we shouldn’t be surprised to see that ‘full service history’ sits at the top of a list of features we asked buyers to rank in importance.



Low running costs

Responses from Auto Trader’s last consumer market behaviour survey (not surprisingly) confirmed that running costs and fuel efficiency are high on the list of those looking for their next used car. 66% said that buying a car that is cheap to run would be a big factor in their next purchase decision, while 65% said they would look for a more fuel efficient model. Both of these statistics highlight the priority you should assign to low running costs in your descriptions. Make them stand out. And remember that even a 4×4 can be fuel efficient and cheap to run, relative to the competition. The Mitsubishi PHEV is a good example.



Attention grabbers

Don’t forget to use attention grabbers. Think of any online or print advert. Firstly, you are drawn to an attractive image, then you read a snappy headline that appeals to something you want or need, and that invites you to read further to learn more. This isn’t rocket science, but around 30,000 cars listed on Auto Trader don’t include headline grabbers at all. And that’s a wasted opportunity. Without a headline grabber you’re missing an important step in the process. This particular example may not be relevant for every car on your forecourt, but it makes sense to skew attention grabbers towards things at the top of the list above…

Main dealer service history, just £28 per year road tax or returns more than 50 miles per gallon



Finally…rounding prices

Good descriptions are important. But there’s one other simple step that you can take to increase your chance of standing out in a crowded marketplace – and that involves rounding prices. A car that is priced at £7,999 will appear in searches in the £7,000 and £8,000 price range. But one priced at £8,000 will also appear in searches between £8,000 and £9,000. For the sake of a pound you could increase the chances of one of your forecourt stars being found by a factor of 50%. Sceptical? Give it a try.