Tips on Buying and Selling Horses Online
Tips on Buying and Selling Horses Online
By: Patricia Bores
Selling horses online is convienient and affordable. There are thousands of Equine Classified websites to choose from, but you need to be savvy when creating your ads to get the best results on any of them. Here are a few pointers I’ve learned in the three years that I have been listing horses for sale and over seeing my customer’s ads that are listed on,
1) List your ads on several high traffic Equine Classified websites.
The more exposure the better! Most of these websites list a photo ad for less than $20 & run them for 3 to 12 months. You will be reaching millions of viewers and only spending a fraction of what it costs to list a photo ad in Equine Magazines or News Papers.
2) Photo & Video ads get results!
Plain Text ads do not draw near the attention that photo & video ads do. The more information you can give a viewer right away the better the chance that you will get seriously interested responses to your ads.
Submit high quality pictures that show your horse’s best attributes:
*Show a rider on the horse if trained to a discipline.
*Scan more than one picture together to create an image for your ad: head shot, side view, rear view, riding or moving.
*Have a video clip made & list the address where it is stored online.
Some ad forms have a special field for this feature. Go to this address to see an example of a video clip: http://www.horsevu.com/videos/reggie/reggie56.asf
*You can use video clips from a digital camera as long as you have stored them somewhere on the internet.
* If possible offer to send a video tape showing what the interested buyer wants to see. It is best to show how the horse handles in several different situations: loading onto a trailer, tieing, tacking up, mounting, riding or moving , and close up footage of any concern areas. If you want the tape back be sure to send a SASE. This will help greatly to ensure that you will get it back.
3) Title your ads with your horse’s best selling points :
“`97 AQHA Roan Gelding/Futurity Winner/Quiet” If a Subtitle is allowed USE IT!! This is your chance to make sure a click through to your ad happens. You might want to list the price here along with another of the horse’s great qualities: “Priced to sell $3500/Foundation Registered/Works Cattle.”
4) Be honest with how you describe your horse’s abilities & character.
*Do not list information or pictures that are not true, current representations of your horse. Describing & showing current photos/video clips & abilities will help greatly in bringing serious buyers that will be happy with their purchase .
5) Make sure your contact information is listed correctly!
*Take the time to make sure that you enter a workable email address & phone # that you can be reached at. I’ve had many reports of ads that do not have a workable email address or phone #.
*Test your ad’s response form to see if your email address is working by sending yourself a response.
*Most people want to be able to EMAIL a response to an ad for the first contact, so make sure that you will get it. Do not rely on them following through with calling you if they don’t get through to you by email. Most folks do not take the time to bookmark your ad. They expect you to reply to their inquiry .
6) List Online photo ads to announce your horse’s Auction listing at a Sale Barn.
This is a great way to drive buyers to bid on your horse that never would have known about the sale otherwise. I’ve had reports of horse auction listings bringing in the highest bids at the event because of the exposure on my site .
7) Be patient!
Sometimes it takes more than a couple weeks or even months to sell a horse online. I’ve made horse sales from online ads as old as 12 months. You never know when the right person will bring up your ad. It can also happen in just a couple hours of being listed . I sold a horse in 4 hours after listing an ad on my site!
8)Edit your ads when needed
*Delete your ads when your horse sells. I’ve had many complaints about how disappointing it is to respond to ads for horses that have already sold. If you want to leave your ad online to help bring attention to your other horses for sale, then edit the ad to say so.
*Keep your ads fresh by editing new titles & subtitles and if possible changing pics or video clips.
9) Renew Your Ads.
* When your ad expires & you haven’t sold your horse renew the ad. Often times I hear how a renewed ad brought a successful sale. With most website classified ad services you can easily renew your ad with just a click from a member page. Most of these services charge less for renewing an ad than the original listing price.
10) Require a Purchase Agreement.
* This will give peace of mind to both you & the buyer. I negotiate the terms to suit my needs as well as the other party with each horse individually I sell & buy online. Sometimes I want a 30 day trial before a final purchase or sale, or I have accepted a down payment to hold a horse. This contract needs to be written to make sure both parties understand what each wants & will uphold.
*Outline who is responsible for trailering if the purchase dosen’t go through after a 30 day trial period & if the horse owner will require an exit health examination paid by the buyer/seller; how long you will garuntee the horse for whatever the buyer/seller wants; your return policy if any; ect.
* How you will accept payment,ie: certified check, money order, cash, an escrow service.
* If you are willing to accept a personal check and the horse is registered state that you will hold the papers untill the payment clears.
*Be sure to get the original signed copies of the purchase agreement & not just a faxed copy.
11) Request A Purchase Health Exam, Health Transporting papers & a current Negative Cogins test.
*This will insure that you are aware of the horse’s physical condition and there will be no surprises after the purchase. Purchase examinations can be done by a vet of the buyer’s choice & are highly recommended when the buyer can not see the horse in the flesh. I do this with all the horses I am considering buying that are too far away for me to personaly go see before I buy. The one time I didn’t do it I was extremely disapointed in what I bought!
*Most states require a current Health Examination paper & a negative Cogins test for transporting.
12) Give Your Feedback to The Websites You Used.
* We all need feedback to help us learn & grow. I rely greatly on my customer’s feedback to help me guide my site’s needed changes.