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Sell More Cars Through Better Photography (Part One)

Mar 01, 2017

You have seconds to get a customer's attention online, and vehicle photos are often the first impressions of your dealership. You've spent hundreds on auction fees, transportation and reconditioning your vehicles. So why would you use below-average photos to represent your vehicle and expect to get a customer's attention out of the hundreds of other options accessible to them online?

Show the customer you care about your product. Impress them with photos that depict the quality of the vehicle and dealership, and theyll come to the showroom to see it in person. Below are four tips for taking better inventory photos to drive showroom traffic. 

1. Do your research

The right camera will make all the difference, and you must ensure that you purchase the best camera for your dealership. Smartphones can take quality shots and mobile apps have made it easier to manage and upload photos, but quality can vary by brand and model of phone. Luckily, today there are HD digital cameras available that produce quality photos that can quickly and wirelessly connect directly with your inventory to automate the upoading process to your dealerships website.  

The CloudCam Dealership HD camera automatically updates dealership inventory to their website.

2. Get something up fast

Even if it's just a couple of shots, try to post some images of the vehicle as soon as you can. Online browsers want to visually see actual vehicles and what differentiates them from other similar vehicles they are looking at. A viewer is not going to read through all the details on every vehicle if your website is serving up search results filled with stock or "coming soon" photos. You are losing potential customers every day that vehicle sits on your lot without any photo online.  

Instead of seeing the vehicle that a customer is looking for, they must read all the details to distinguish between vehicles, thus decreasing the chance that that customer will come into the dealership.

3. The right photos

Lots of shots showing options is one thing. The key to achieving a customer's trust, though, is being entirely transparent about the real condition of the vehicle through great photos. Put the most content-rich images in the first ten slides with the first image of the vehicle pointing to the right. Our natural visual direction is from left to right, and by pointing the vehicle to the right you are guiding the buyer's eye in the direction of all the great options you want them to see.

Put shots of the main selling points in the top 10 slides.

4. Shoot at the right time of day

This is by far the most common mistake people make while trying to get quality shots of any subject. The best time to shoot will be in the hour or so after sunset or before sunrise, but don't shoot into the sun. If you must shoot in the harsh light during the middle of the day, try to find a spot where the vehicle and background are all in the shade. The north side of a building is a good spot for softer lighting

Shooting in the morning or evening or the shade of the building will help soften harsh shadows and reflections.

Watch for Part Two of this article, where well share four additional tips.