Used Vehicle Descriptions

Ron Henson
I've spent the day reading used vehicle descriptions in my market and they are terrible! Customers want to hear specific information about the particular vehicle they are looking at. Where did you get it? What do you know about the owners? What condition is it in? Don't just list the specs off of the original Monroney! What do you do at your dealership?
Robert Karbaum
Whenever this subject comes up, I make the suggestion to look at private listings. People who sell their vehicles privately always do a far better job describing vehicles than the dealer average. Brent Wee's did a great example of this when he sold his car privately. He wrote a blog about it:
Ron Henson
Great point Robert! Private listings owners tend to tell the "story" of the car and stories sell.
Mark Miller
We struggled with the same issue at my previous dealership. Initially we were just posting the Monroney list. Once we had control of the recon process we incorporated portions of the repairs we did, the condition of the vehicle, and detailed the description of the car better. We also used the suggestion Robert had, we started looking at how private sellers were listing their cars. We wanted to be transparent to the potential buyers. Disclosing the recon work was risky, but it paid off int he long run for us.
Lauren Moses
ugh...I absolutely hate descriptions. As good of a writer as I am I suck at these. It is still a working progress but I did at one point have a website that you could go and put in the year, make, model, and in most cases trim level, and get a decent description. You got like 5 a day for free. I would take these and then alter them some to fit our vehicles a little better. I'll have to see if I can find the website again since it's been a while since I got on it. Love the idea of looking at personal listings. It would give a more personal touch. Anyone ever tried a "letter from my previous owner"? Make the description look like it was written from the previous owner, even if you wrote it out?
Lindsay Kwaselow
The best piece of advice I can offer when it comes to used vehicle descriptions is one word: reconditioning. Include reconditioning in your comments as this is a huge investment you made that consumers would never know about. Comments give you the chance to show customers the $800-$1,000 investment you made getting your vehicle showroom ready with all new tires and new brakes. This one piece of information could be the hot point that sets your vehicle apart from the 20 others the customer has already viewed. Also, don't waste time taking up space with "fluff" and "cheese." Get straight to the point and basically shout out the top value, option, and reconditioning highlights that will justify your vehicle's price and make it stand out. There are vendors that will totally automate this process and integrate directly with your inventory provider to push comments to your website and listing sites. A hands-off approach frees up time for selling cars. Make sure you choose a solution that will dynamically update as your inventory ages, and of course choose a vendor that will include recon highlights for you. Check out PureCars' SmartComments.

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