Here are some more pro tips to make learning how to sell on Craigslist even easier and ensure you get the best possible return on investment.
Create an Account
If you’re going to be selling more than one item on Craigslist, I recommend creating an account. Creating an account on Craigslist is free and only takes a few minutes. Having an account will make managing your listings a lot easier.
Create a Separate Email Address
One of the big downfalls of Craigslist is that it is filled with spammers and scammers. This doesn’t mean you shouldn’t learn how to sell on Craigslist; just be aware of this going in.
If you check the “CL mail relay” bubble (which is checked by default), Craigslist will mask your email address when potential buyers contact you. However, once you respond to that potential buyer, he or she will have your real email address.
Sometimes unscrupulous individuals will correspond with you in order to get your email address so they can add you to spam mailing lists or even attempt to hack your account. In order to avoid this, I recommend creating a separate email address that you only use for selling stuff on Craigslist.
Get a Burner (or Google Voice Number)
Instead of handing out your personal cell phone number to every Tom, Dick, and Harry on Craigslist, consider getting either a Google Voice number or a “burner” (prepaid) phone to use.
This is a great way to protect your privacy.
Include Other Items
When selling on Craigslist, you have the option to include other items you’re selling. To include links to your other Craigslist ads, all you have to do is check the “include more ads by this user link” checkbox.
Always check this box, especially if the items you’re selling are related.
Try, Try Again
Ads on Craigslist are shown in the order that they were posted. This means that when you first post your item, it’ll be at the top of the page. However, as other people list items in the category your ad will get pushed lower and lower until it is no longer on the first page. How quickly this happens will depend on how frequently people are posting to that category.
Keep an eye on your listing. Once it is towards the bottom of page 1, I recommend deleting it and re-listing so that your ad is once again at the top. For categories where there are many postings every day (ex. cars), instead of re-listing every 2 hours consider re-listing every 2 days.
When you re-list, try to freshen up your copy a bit or tweak it. For example, if this is your 10th time re-listing you may want to consider lowering the price.
Always delete your old listings. Don’t just keep posting new ads.
Have a bunch of lower end items that fit around a theme? For example, a bunch of kitchenware or DVDs? Selling these items individually may not be worth your time as each might go for $5 to $15. What if you grouped them?
Selling items in a group can set you apart from other sellers, help you get rid of multiple items at one time, and allow you to raise the price (so that selling it is worth your time).
Offering delivery on an item (especially a large item) can drastically increase your pool of potential buyers. Someone may really want that treadmill you haven’t touched since January 2012 but have no way to pick it up and transport it.
Say that delivery is available in the headline of your ad to attract even more potential buyers.
Offering delivery can also solve the problem of inviting strangers to your house. Just be sure to bring someone with you when you go to a stranger’s house!
Pro tip: Only agree to deliver an item if the buyer seems very serious. Otherwise you’ll end up hauling stuff all over town and wasting your gas and time.
The Customer is Always Right
Part of learning how to sell on Craigslist is learning how to provide good customer service. This means promptly replying to inquiries about your item.
A lot of other articles on how to sell on Craigslist tell you not to respond to every inquiry. Frankly, I think that’s pretty rude. Respond to all legitimate potential buyers. If something is obviously a scam, you don’t need to reply, but otherwise, take the 60 seconds required to answer someone’s question about your item.
Maybe that person won’t end up buying this particular item but your good customer service could have them checking out your other listings.
Know the Law
While this won’t apply to most items, it is important to know any laws pertaining to the item you’re selling.
For example, if you’re selling a car in your area do you have to have a dealer’s license? Can you sell the car if you’re still making payments on it?
Research laws (Google is a good place to start) to avoid any legal boo-boos down the road.
The Right Tool
If you’re selling an item that will require disassembly, it’s typically a good idea to leave it put together until the last possible minute. This will allow the buyer to carefully inspect it and ensure that the item functions (if applicable) and that all pieces are present.
However, have the tools needed for disassembly on hand. Don’t count on your buyer bringing his or her own tools.
Guess what? You now know how to sell on Craigslist!
While learning how to sell on Craigslist is pretty easy, there’s always ways to improve your techniques. For more resources and info on how to sell on Craigslist, check out some of these awesome books from Amazon. Otherwise… get started selling on Craigslist now! 🙂