I have been practically living on Craigslist and eBay for the last couple of days searching for a couple of vehicles for my son and daughter. My son currently has a 1968 Ford Mustang hardtop that we purchased for him back in November of last year that has turned out to be one of the worst money pit, lemon sucking vehicles I have ever owned. The car has been in the shop more often then my poor son has had the chance to drive it. We then bought a cheap little 1994 Toyota Tercel for my daughter to learn how to drive in. It has been a good little car but my wife wants to get her something a little nicer and sportier.
So I’m on Craigslist looking at car after car after car. It is a grueling experience not only trying to weed out all the scams from legitimate offers but due to the fact that people don’t put enough information into their ad. It is amazing to me that someone would take the time to list a car and then not leave their phone number. You have the option of emailing them but then they never respond. Why did you place the ad in the first place?
Then there is the fact that they don’t provide enough details. Here is one I just found:
Honda DelSol $3500obo. – $3500
Super nice convertable hard top,4cyl,Auto Trans,Loaded.130,000 miles Just got Seviced 200 miles ago. XXX-XXX-XXX (number removed to protect privacy)Glen
At least they left a phone number but what year is it? How about providing the VIN number so I can run a CarFax report? How about describing its condition inside and out? Maybe you could add what options the car has? How about using a spell checker (service misspelled). Instead they leave a person like me to either email for more info or call them in which most cases I get no response.
I found a Saab 9-3 SE Turbo that looked interesting and did actually make contact with the guy via email but have now asked him three times for the VIN and his phone number so I can arrange to actually look at the car. No response! Do you want to sell your car or what, buddy?
Then I found a 2004 Jeep Grand Cherokee Limited on eBay with no reserve starting at $500. Well, I have to at least bid on this. I know it is not going to go for $500 but you never know. As soon as I place my $500 bid, the guy changes the status of title from “clear” to “other” meaning salvage. Luckily, someone already outbid me.
It is amazing to me that people do not take good pictures of what they want to sell. The pictures are from far away, they are blurry, they show one lousy shot of the car, no interior shots, no engine shots, etc., etc. I have even come across ads where they have shot photos of their vehicles at night! What, you go a wild wimb and decided one evening, “I think I’ll sell my car,” of which you then proceed to take pictures of it at night so no one can see the details? Amazing!
This entire experience (which I’m still going through) has lead me to think about how our company sells its services. Can people reach us? Is someone there to answer the phone and if not, do we get back to messages quickly? Do I and my staff respond to emails quickly? Do we respond to RFPs quickly? Do we complete jobs on schedule? Does our web site give detailed information on who we are and what we have to offer? The answer to all these questions is yes, yes, yes! That is why we have been around since 1997 and continue to grow, because we do “want to sell it.”
It seems ridiculous to me to put forth an effort to sell something, whether that be a car, a product or some kind of service such as search engine marketing and then not allow people to buy from you. That is essentially what one does when they don’t properly display what they have to offer or will not allow a prospective buyer to contact them at the moment they are in that “buying” state of mind. In a day and age where there is so much competition, it is vital for a company to represent their product and/or service in the best possible way they can and then to be ready to actually sell it. From my car searching experience as well as many other experiences as a consumer, it is sad to see how many individuals and/or companies seems if they could really care less if they sell it or not. In the meantime, the poor consumer wastes their time chasing after a ghost.
Enough of my rant. Now off to refresh that Craigslist and see if I can find someone, anyone who will sell me a good vehicle.