How to up your car selling game in 5 steps
Because we’re bored of doing our regular work but need to pretend like we’re doing something, we’ve gone through our Used Car listings acting like we’re the Gordon Ramsay of cars and critiquing other people’s photography techniques. Humans are extremely visual creatures – our brain retains 90% of the images we see as opposed to 10% of what we read. And we’re not too hot on the pictures from our Post An Ad folks.
Both seasoned and first-time direct sellers should ask themselves this question: How do I leave lasting impressions and get more attention in the advertising space I’ve just signed up for?
It’s a simple equation: Great shots get noticed.
We’ve rounded up 5 of the most common mistakes from car sellers and provide the solutions here. You’re welcome.
Camera, Lights, Action!
Lighting is the key factor in creating any successful image – over or under exposure loses your details. Overexposure isn’t that bad since you’ll still be able to tell what car it is but nitpicky buyers might suspect that you’re trying to hide dents or such. As for underexposure, the image on top is better suited for selling your headlights in our Marketplace.
Some examples of good lighting.
Find a good lighting environment.
If you’re using your phone camera, you can switch to auto mode and tap to focus on an ambiguous feature (like the headlight) and it will automatically adjust your exposure setting.
Simply tap on something that has middle tone of colour on the car while in auto mode.
Remember to take a few photos from every position so you can choose the best when you preview them later. You can retake them if necessary but do bear in mind that if you are shooting in natural sunlight, a time delay between different angles of the car might cause you to have a yellowish cast in your photo if its approaching evening time. Lastly, avoid taking pictures against a light, turn off your flash and minimize movements for a sharper image.
Find your angle
Too high; too low.
We’re sure you have a strong selfie game – nobody takes a shot from under your chin! Same goes for your car - avoid extreme angles that make your car look awkward.
A couple of examples of how your picture should look like. Keep a distance, be at the right height and find your angle. Pro-tip: when selling your car, these are the basic angles required
1. Front ¾ view
2. Front view
3. Side views
5. Front interior
6. Back interior
7. Engine Bay
Near, far, wherever you are
Have you ever wonder why your car looks weird in photos? It’s the effect of Lens Distortion when you take from too close a distance. It was popular a few years ago when everybody started taking “fish eye lens” effect of their pets. It’s cute for animals but not so much for cars. It’ll bloat your bonnet and make it look distorted.
Most smartphones don’t automatically correct these distortion and skew. In order to correct these distortions, you’ll need to stand at least three meters away from the car and zoom in to show your car as much as possible.
Avoid noisy reflections and glare
Shooting dark colored car is akin to shooting a mirror. The most minute surrounding will be reflected off your vehicle and you don’t want that to happen especially if it’ll make your car look like it has some defect. Sometimes, the linear architecture of buildings will add unnecessary lines to your car. Trees may mask specific curvature if your bonnet, if any.
Find a spot where there are minimal distractive elements around. Shift your car or move yourself to find an angle with the least reflections. Just make sure you don’t go too far, and bear in mind that some reflections might serve you well instead of sabotaging your shot.
Don’t act like an artist.
Just be honest. Don’t over edit or remove any visual damage.
Meitu Xiu Xiu is for humans. We understand that with some editing done to the photo, it will probably enhance the way your car looks on screen but excessive editing of photos is kind of overkill. As if something is wrong with the car's paintworks or some other problems that the seller is hiding. Just be honest. Minor edits such as adjusting of brightness, cropping, resizing images are just fine. There are some guidelines that the sellers would have to follow while using sgCarMart Post An Ad service.
Abstracts? Nah, Just get straight to the point.
And also, you're posting the photos for classified ads - not for some art gallery exhibition. Abstract shots are nice and arty-farty but keep those for your Instagram likes. Don't forget, you're limited to uploading only a few images, so don’t waste those slots. Take a proper set of photos and you're good to go!
Hygiene is King
Leaving what should be the first point till the last - it would be nice if you could give it a good wash at nearby petrol station or get your hands down and dirty with these five simple ways to wash your car. You wouldn’t want a selfie to be untidy or dirty so why not extend the same courtesy to your car?
It’s a good idea to carry a rag of some sort (preferably lint-free) that you can use to wipe any dirt off the car during a photoshoot. Yes, you can take out little dirt specks while editing the photos, but it will make your life much easier to just take care of it on the spot. It’s not hard to just take the rag and wipe down any dirty areas. This will not only make the car look better/cleaner, thus making your shots look that much more professional, but it will also save you time in editing so you can worry about more important stuff.
As we’ve come to the end the blog entry and you happen to spot any of your photos in our article. Don’t be alarmed as they’re intended for educational purposes and references for our future sellers to learn from it.
Now that you know how to up your car selling game, let’s be honest sellers here and not digitally over enhance your photos when you’re done with them. Interested buyers will know right away if you remove the duct tape that hold your bumper on or digitally remove the long deep scratches on your doors when they came and test drive your ride. So, advisable to take clean and clear photographs that are fairly real. Cheers.