Frequently Asked Questions

  • Creating an advert
  • What to put in your advert
  • Contact details in your ad
  • Ad packages, pricing and payment
  • About your car
  • About your bike
  • Registering on Auto Trader
  • Changing your ad
  • Renewing your ad
  • Deleting your ad
  • Using Auto Trader on mobile devices
  • Misleading ads
  • Your privacy

How do I place an advert for my car?

Visit our selling homepage and enter your car registration number. From there you're just a few steps away from creating your advert, choosing your package and getting it live on our site.

Can I place an advert without internet access?

Yes. Call us on 0345 111 0003 and one of our expert agents will help you place your advert over the phone.

How do I advertise a van?

Visit Auto Trader Vans and select Sell a Van at the top of the page. Enter your van's registration number and follow the 4 easy steps to create your advert and choose your package.

How do I advertise a motorbike?

Visit Auto Trader Bikes site and select Sell my bike at the top of the page. Just follow the steps on screen and choose your package to get your bike in front of our wide audience of bike buyers.

Can I advertise a vehicle that is not registered in the UK?

No. You can only use Auto Trader to advertise vehicles registered in the UK (incl. Northern Ireland)

When will my advert appear on the Auto Trader website?

Once you've chosen your package and paid for your ad, it will go live within 24 hours - and often within just a few hours.

What is the difference between a private and a trade seller?

A private seller is anyone selling a car or bike within a personal capacity. If you wish to sell a car in the course of business or trade, the law says you must declare that you are a trade seller.

Why am I being told to take out a trade ad?

This may be due to the number of adverts you've already placed with us. Call us on 0345 111 0003 and we'll be happy to look into it.

How do I write a good advert?

We'll use your car or bike's registration number to look up its basic details, but you'll still need to enter its mileage and details of its history - plus information about optional or desirable features it has.

You get space to list the features, and you can enter a description to make the ad appear to buyers. Be as clear as possible and try to avoid jargon. For instance, 'metallic red' is more helpful than 'Fire Opal'.

Be sure to include any positive selling points, like the number of previous owners and service history. Don't use block capitals, or clichéd phrases like 'lovely driver' or 'first to see will buy'.

How many photos can I include in my online ad?

Your ad can include up to 20 photos of your car or bike. The more photos you have, the more likely your ad is to be viewed.

Are there restrictions on the photos I can use?

The photos must be a true representation of the vehicle. We cannot accept stock or library photos, cut-outs or montages. We reserve the right to remove such photos from adverts.

Photos must be at least 640 pixels wide and 480 pixels tall and saved in JPEG format. If you're not sure what this means, don't worry - we'll let you know of any problems when you upload your photos.

How do I upload photos to my advert?

You can upload photos directly from your computer or mobile device.

If the photos are your phone or another mobile device, it's easiest to use our mobile upload tool. This lets you choose photos from your phone's gallery.

How many phone numbers can I include in my advert?

You can include up to two contact numbers. Many people include their home and mobile numbers to make it easy for buyers to reach them.

Can buyers contact me via email?

We'll give you the option to include your email address when you create your ad. If you do include your email address, keep in mind that we have no control over who emails you.

Learn about using email safely

What should I do if I think I've seen a false/ scam advert from another seller?

We take false adverts on Auto Trader very seriously. You can use the 'Report This Ad' button on the advert or contact our Customer Security team on 0845 071 0487

How much will it cost me to place a car advert with Auto Trader?

We have a range of packages that start from just £7.95.

When choosing your ad package, it's important to think about factors such as the age, condition and asking price of your car, as these can determine how long it takes to sell.

Over 75% of people sell their car within 3 weeks. This means our Standard package is a good place to start, as it includes 3 weeks on the site, images in the search results and Mobile Advantage, which makes your ad stand out to the increasing number of people searching on their mobile phone.

What is a bargain car advert?

We offer cheaper ad packages for cars priced below £1,000. These are bargain adverts.

How much will it cost me to place an advert with Auto Trader Bikes?

For Bikes priced over £1,000 we have a range of packages that start from just £19.99.

When choosing your ad package, it's important to think about factors such as the age, condition and asking price of your Bike, as these can determine how long it takes to sell.

For most customers, our Standard package is a good place to start, as it includes 3 weeks on the site (desktop, tablet and mobile) and Search standout (images in the search results) which makes your ad stand out more effectively.

For Bikes priced £1,000 or less we have a free to list offer. Your advert will appear on the site (desktop, tablet and mobile) for 3 weeks for free!

What is a bargain (free to list) bike advert?

We offer a free to list package for bikes priced below £1000 or less. Your advert will appear on the site (desktop, tablet and mobile) for 3 weeks for free!

Does Mobile Advantage work on tablets (including iPad)?

No, Mobile Advantage only highlights your ad when buyers searching on their mobile phones.

What payment methods do you accept?

We accept major types of credit and debit card and other payment methods including PayPal, Visa, Visa Electron, MasterCard and Maestro.

Do you accept payment by cheque?

No. We only acceptPayPal, Visa, Visa Electron, MasterCard and Maestro.

How do I pay for an advert?

Once you've created your advert, you can pay via our payment partner, WorldPay. The payment process uses strong encryption to protect your details when they're transferred over the internet, and WorldPay is one of the world's largest payment service providers.

Does my car have to have an MOT to be sold?

No. However, it is illegal to drive a car without a valid MOT, so you and the buyer will need to make arrangements for the car to be legally transported once the sale has been agreed.

Can I sell a vehicle that is a category C or D write off?

Yes. Just make sure this is obvious from the description in your advert.

Can I sell a vehicle that is a category A or B write off?

We cannot advertise Cat A or B vehicles due to the damage they have previously sustained.

Does my bike have to have an MOT to be sold?

No. However, it is illegal to drive a bike without a valid MOT, so you and the buyer will need to make arrangements for the car to be legally transported once the sale has been agreed.

Can I sell a vehicle that is a category C or D write off?

Yes. Just make sure this is obvious from the description in your advert.

Can I sell a vehicle that is a category A or B write off?

We cannot advertise Cat A or B vehicles due to the damage they have previously sustained.

Do I have to register with Auto Trader to place an advert?

Yes. It's free and simple to sign up - once you have entered your vehicle details we'll ask for the information we need to get you signed up.

How do I register?

We'll get you registered when you place your first ad, but if you want to sign up separately then just click Register at the top right on any page on our website. Registering only takes a moment.

Can I change my advert once it has gone live?

Yes. It's easy to change your ad - just use the Manage my ad option in My Garage when you're signed in to Auto Trader.

I've changed my ad. When will it be updated on your site?

Once you've submitted your changes, they take a little while to go live. We process most changes within 3 hours, although occasionally it can take up to 24 hours.

Can I change the location of my vehicle?

Yes, unless you're changing the location from Northern Ireland to Great Britain, or vice versa.

If you have trouble changing your postcode, please call us on 0345 111 0003.

Do I have to pay extra to change an advert?

No. You can change your ad for free, unless you decide to choose a different package or renew your ad, in which case you will need to pay the price of the new package.

Can change to my advert through my mobile phone?

Yes. The Manage my ad option is available on your mobile phone too.

How do I rebook my advert?

You can renew your ad via the Manage my advert option when you're signed in to Auto Trader.

You can renew any ads that have expired or been deleted in the last three months. We'll give you the option to make changes to the ad and pick a different package before you make payment.

How long do expired adverts stay in my account?

You can use the Manage my ads option to see ads for 3 months after they expired or were deleted.

I've sold my car. How do I delete the advert?

Just choose Manage my ad, then select Delete.

Can I mark my vehicle as sold rather than take it off the site completely?

No. It's best to delete your ad, or you'll probably continue to receive calls from buyers.

Can I place an ad from my mobile phone or another mobile device?

Yes. We've created a special process that's quick and easy to use on your mobile. Just visit Auto Trader on your mobile device and select Sell my car.

Will buyers see my ad on their mobile phones?

Yes. Visitors using mobile devices see a version of our site that's designed specifically for viewing on a smaller screen. Your advert will be visible to these buyers.

In fact, your advert will be visible to all buyers, no matter whether they're using their desktop computer, mobile phone, tablet or another device.

I took the Mobile Advantage option. How do I see this?

Visit our site from your mobile phone, and search for cars using your exact postcode and asking price. You'll then see how your ad looks to buyers.

What is a misleading advert?

A misleading advert contains inaccurate or misleading information. For example:

a) An unrealistically low price. This can make the ad appear near the top of results when sorted by price.
b) Inaccurate mileage. Showing a very low mileage can help cars rank well when results are sorted by mileage.

Why does Auto Trader remove misleading ads?

Misleading ads make it harder for buyers to find vehicles that match their requirements. Search results can become polluted by adverts for cars that contain incorrect information, causing confusion and frustration for buyers.

Misleading ads are also unfair on other sellers. Their ads can get pushed down search results.

Is it against the law to place a misleading ad?

Sometimes. As with any other type of advertising, you must not misrepresent a vehicle that you're selling. For instance, it may be against the law to show an inaccurate mileage figure in your ad.

However, adding an incorrect price or mileage to your advert does break Auto Trader terms and conditions that you have agreed to.

What happens if I place a misleading ad?

If your advert is reported as being misleading, a member of our team will review it. If they agree that the ad is misleading, it will be removed from Auto Trader and you will not receive a refund or credit.

We may also cancel any contract we have with trade customers who repeatedly breach our rules on misleading ads.

Full details are contained in our advertising guidelines.

What should I do if I see a misleading ad?

Please report it. All you have to do is select the 'Report this ad' option.

We investigate every report we receive, so with your help we can make the site even better for buyers and sellers.

I've reported an ad, but it is still on the site, what should I do?

All adverts that are reported to us have to be checked manually. We sometimes receive reports for ads that are found to not be misleading; this can slow down processing, please bear with us. Feel free to report it again in case we've missed it.

What happens to repeat offenders?

We have the right to cancel any contract we have with trade customers who repeatedly breach our rules on misleading ads as per our terms and conditions.

What about customers who place other types of misleading ads, e.g. wanted, sold, spares and repairs etc?

Any advert that you believe is misleading, can be reported using the same 'report this ad' link. It will be investigated, and if confirmed as misleading, the ad may be removed.

What happens when an advert is reported?

All adverts that are reported to us are checked manually by a dedicated team. If found to be misleading, they are removed as per our advertising guidelines.

How will I know if one of my adverts has been removed because it was misleading?

Any advert removed will be communicated to the seller via an email.

Do I have to provide you with my name and address?

The only information we require is your email address, contact details and the postcode where your car is located.

What contact information do you show in adverts?

We'll display your phone number on your advert, so buyers can contact you.

You can also choose to allow contact by email through an online form, if you like. We won't show your email address in your advert.

Do you pass my details on to other companies or organisations?

Only if you opted in to receiving third party communications when you signed up for Auto Trader.