15th December 2010
Hundreds of classic motorcycles are offered for sale each month, but some sell much faster than others. Here are our top tips to help you sell your classic bike more quickly...
Make sure you put a price in, and double-check that it is realistic. Many people won't bother to call if there's no price mentioned or if it is sky-high. If you're not sure, then the 'offers around £XX' at least gives buyers a clue whether they can afford to call you!
Where Are You?
Always give a geographical region. Doesn't need to be precise, but the county and country will help. This will also cut down on wasted calls from people at the other end of the earth. But don't go too far; there's no need to give your full address in your advert (and if we spot it then we'll remove those details to protect your privacy and help keep your bike secure)
We Love Landlines
Lots of people won't call mobile numbers and still don't have easy access to email. So if you want to attract plenty of prospective purchasers, make sure you list an old-fashioned telephone number. Remember that even though you may be sending your advert by email, it will appear in print in the monthly RealClassic magazine and be seen by all those people who don't browse the Net. So make it simple for them to contact you
Just The Facts
Plenty of info is useful but make sure that it's relevant. The buyer doesn't need your life history, but details about new parts fitted, modifications and upgrades, etc, will help to sell your machine. Don't witter on about why you bought it and where you've been. Folk will doze off before they get to the price-line…
Make, Model, Year
Don't assume that everyone is totally familiar with old bikes. Make sure you explain fully what you are selling. A '1971 BSA A65 Thunderbolt 650 twin' will be more easily recognised by more people than just an 'oif A65T'.
Protesting Too Much?
If you're using our service to sell a modern bike then you don't need to justify it on the grounds that it's a 'modern classic' or 'someday-soon classic' or somesuch. Just keep it to the bare details.
Worth A Thousand Words
Photos, that is. Really. We just need one. Take it in clear daylight without a cluttered background, from the side. Ideally a digital image of around 500kb will do the trick, but an old-fashioned snap is also fine. Don't send a pic of the bike at a weird angle, at the back of your shed, at midnight, taken with a ten year old phone. Please.
Genuine Reason For Sale
Everyone has a 'genuine' reason for selling a bike. Personal info is less likely to attract a buyer than a keen price or technical details about the machine. So do say that it's had a recent service, been upgraded to electronic ignition, got stainless wheels or whatever. Don't bother with your domestic situation unless it is particularly relevant - 'must sell by end of Jan as emigrating' would be pertinent.
Great! Tell people if you can arrange delivery, or if they can view the bike at a central location (maybe a show?). The easier you make it for someone to buy your bike, then the higher price you'll get for it
Keep A List…
…of people who phone up, even if you think you have already sold the bike. Then if your first buyer drops out, you can call back the other chaps without having to go through the rigmarole of advertising all over again…
Don't describe something as 'nice looking' if it's really scruffy, or 'completely standard' if it's actually a bitsa that's been bolted together. If you aren't certain of a fact, then say nowt rather than being deliberately inaccurate. The buyer will only kick up when they finally see the bike in the metal, and you'll save wasting everyone's time.
You'd be amazed how many people don't bother to spend an afternoon cleaning a bike. Although this may show up some of the machine's flaws which would otherwise be smothered in muck, it will also show off your bike to its best effect when being viewed by potential purchasers. Any savvy shopper will wonder why it's covered in mud if you haven't bothered to scrub it up…
So now you can go and browse our classic classifieds, and see how many sellers have taken our advice!
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