craigslistWhat is it?Craigslist is a classified advertisements website with sectionsdevoted to jobs, housing, personals, for sale, items wanted,services, community, gigs, résumés, and discussion forums.Craig Newmark began the service in 1995 as an emaildistribution list of friends, featuring local events in the SanFrancisco Bay Area, before becoming a web-based service in1996 and expanding into other classified categories. It startedexpanding to other U.S. cities in 2000, and currently covers 50countries.Also can be found at cl.com
Craigslist Trivia• Jim Buckmaster has been CEO since the year 2000.• Supports 13 languages,• more than 700 local sites• in 70 countries.• Craigslist is a for-profit company that has more than 60 million users per month in the US alone, receives more than 2 million job listings per month. Has around 30 employees in San Francisco.
Some of the most popular uses Looking for places to live Listing places to live Selling stuff Buying stuff Looking for jobs Posting job listings Discussions Looking for a date
Is it Free?• Most postings are free• It costs to post job listings for San Francisco -$75• Many other major cities job listings $25• Brokered apartment rentals NYC $10• Therapeutic services $10/$5 repost• Some post services under Skilled Trade Services to avoid fee.
Create Your Account• Do you already have an account?• Create an account by going here:https://accounts.craigslist.org/login/signup• Enter your email address and fill in the captcha.• Check your email inbox for confirmation email.
How to Create a Successful Posting1. Prepare your item for sale. Clean it, fix it, clear out contacts in a cell phone, etc.2. Research similar postings to see your competition for pricing, etc. Look on ebay too.3. Take a good photo or three. Photos increase your success.1. Provide details. Model number, size, specs.2. Be honest! The buyers will find out anyway.3. Publish the listing (save your listing link).Here’s some good reminders:http://www.moneycrashers.com/craigslist-selling-tips/
Step 2: Communication• Let craigslist create an anonymous email address for you to protect your real address.• If you want to communicate by phone, you can use your real number (but don’t post in the ad, just share it with serious buyers).• You can also use a phone number created with sendhub.com, inumbr.com, google.com/voice. Google is free, sendhub has a free plan, and inumbr has a monthly fee.
Follow the Rules• Craigslist can remove your ad if you break their rules such as:• Ticket scalping• Porn• Illegal transactions (don’t sell drugs using craigslist! )• Posting someone else’s personal info.• Posting in the wrong category• Spamming (MLM ads, links to other websites, etc.)• Overposting (1 post each 48 hours, one geo area)
The Sale• Stick with cash• Make sure the price has been agreed upon before meeting. You don’t want more negotiating once you meet.• Enjoy the experience.• Remove your posting after the sale so you don’t keep getting emails/phone calls.
Be Safe• Don’t accept cashiers checks or money orders. Scammers often use these methods.• Meet in a public place with plenty of people around. Never meet a buyer at your home nor his. Choose a coffee shop or other busy location. Avoid a big open area like a park where other people are less likely to notice you. Bring a friend or family member with you, or at least let someone know where you are going and when. Take a cellphone with you as an extra precaution.• Leave personal details, address, phone #s out of postings.• Read more: http://www.craigslist.org/about/scams
More safety suggestions• Stick with local buyers in general. User your own judgment. We have had buyers come to our home and had a great experience. Sometimes your item is too big to take to meet someone.• If you have them come to your home, be sure you have other people with you.• Ignore email from scammers. Ignore vague emails, they are probably scams.• Read more: http://www.startribune.com/lifestyle/99249399. html?refer=y
Typical scammer email• ---------- Forwarded message ---------- From: kena mckenna <email@example.com> Date: Sat, Aug 22, 2009 at 4:59 PM Subject: RE: shimano pedals pd-m520l - $35 (truckee) To: firstname.lastname@example.org ** CRAIGSLIST ADVISORY --- AVOID SCAMS BY DEALING LOCALLY ** Avoid: wiring money, cross-border deals, work-at-home ** Beware: cashier checks, money orders, escrow, shipping ** More Info: http://www.craigslist.org/about/scams.html Hey, I viewed your email on Craigslist. I just wanted to let you know that my co-worker became un-employed recently because of the credit crunch not too long ago. However, he learned of a a way to make money online from home after reading a news article He is earning 7,500 dollars every single month now working on the internet with Google. Please take a look at the online article: http://docs.google.com/View?id=ddznbsd3_56c8rshzfv A lot of people have improved their lives after giving it a go, and I am sure you can benefit from it. Hope to hear your success!
Buying things on craigslist• If someone wants you to wire them funds, it is a scam.• Deal with local sellers.• Meet in a public place.• Bring exact change.• Ask lots of questions, such as if the car has been smoked in.• Compare prices and offerings.
Subscribe to a Feed• Subscribe to RSS Feeds• If you are looking for something specific, say a Queen Anne brocaded couch circa 1965, you can set up a Craigslist alert to be notified when something new pops up that fits your criteria. This is how you do it:Go to your citys Craigslist, and click on "Furniture."• Then enter your search term(s), what youre willing to pay, and whether youre looking for something from a furniture dealer or private seller.• When youre done, click "Enter."• Scroll to the bottom of the page.• Youll see an orange button with the letters RSS. Click on that button.• Youll see a whole page of funny lookin code in your browser window. Copy that pages URL and paste it into your favorite feed reader.• Depending on your browser choices and how you want to read the feeds, this will be different.• Now you can be notified via your feed reader every time an item is posted on Craigslist that meets your criteria.
Caveat• These are typical suggestions to avoid problems, but you always need to trust your own judgment. For every bad experience there are probably thousands of good ones.• We have broken all the rules and sold a set of tires for a VW Jetta to an out-of-state buyer. He was willing to send his check and wait until it cleared our bank before we shipped the tires, even paying for shipping. He was very nice and the transaction was successful and enjoyable.
Case Study• FinestFloors.net – Sheldon Hirsch• The owner had not considered using something like craigslist to advertise his flooring company’s services and products, but was spending lots of money running ads in the Sacramento Bee, etc. After talking with someone who had been successful advertising on craigslist, he decided to try it out. Currently he is receiving about $250,000 per year in revenue from his craigslist ads. After that success, he has started another business using craigslist.• He shared some of his pointers for creating successful ads. You can see his ads by going to the Sacramento craigslist and under services/skilled trades do a search for “finest floors”.
Sheldon’s pointers1. Use HTML in your ads to include font colors, sizes and graphics.2. Know your product3. Use careful, descriptive wording (keywords that can be found when buyers are searching)4. Scammers tend to go for certain niches, like autos – so be extra careful. He responded to a bunch of ads for cars that were too good to be true. He said they all had the same story, divorce or emergency that required the sale. Then typically they want you to wire the money, or have some other predictable scamming method.5. He once tried to sell a carpet remnant and received the typical scam where someone from “out of state” really wanted the carpet and they Fed-Ex’ed him a cashiers check for over $4K for a $120 item. They sent him instructions to cash the check immediately and then someone would come to pick up the balance. He checked with his bank and, of course the check was fake.6. If you are logical and careful, you won’t be taken by scams. (Why would any out of state person want to buy a carpet remnant site unseen?)