Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Craigslist Questions Answered

This is for Megan... and everyone else who has asked me about how I sell things on Craigslist!

We love Craigslist!

I have sold several things over the past two years, furniture, dog crates, cat toys, kitchen supplies, and video games to name a few :). I found our current house and my current job listed on Craigslist... come to think of it I bought our stove off Craigslist too!

Here are my tips for selling things on Craigslist:
  • If it is in semi-poor or fair condition don't bother selling it. Donate it. This also applies to really ugly furniture. For example, we had a very ugly floral loveseat that we got for free when we first moved here, I didn't want to bother listing it and so we set it on the curb (it was a sunny day). It was GONE within two hours! Since it was free to me, I did not lose any money, plus I didn't have to look at it any longer than necessary!!

The cat liked it :)
DJ hated it! Haha... glad I still had this picture! Love you dear!

  • If it is in good/excellent condition and I remember what I payed for it, I usually knock off $10-20 depending on what I paid for it. Other than that I search on Craigslist for what similar items are priced for and price mine competitively.
  • Create a Craigslist account so you can "renew" your listing every few days, as well as create and keep track of multiple listings. Otherwise your listing stays under the date of the original post. Don't let your add go to the bottom!
  • NEVER list your phone number and address directly on the Craigslist page. If you do list your phone number mix it up by spelling out some of the numbers example: one 2 three-45 six-78 nine ten.
  • We have people e-mail us if interested using the disguise e-mail option. If we get an e-mail from someone interested and it seems authentic we e-mail back with our phone number (scrambled) and tell them to call us so we can set up a time to meet and give our address. So far this system has worked great and we haven't had any weirdos! We have had a couple no-shows which is frustrating but that is the risk you take. SAFETY: I always make sure the hubby is home when I set up a meeting.
    We also try to show items outside on the porch, if it's a nice day and a small enough item, so people don't have to come in the house. Follow your gut!
  • Here's my BEST piece of advice.... always add a picture to your listing! I have listed a couple things with no picture and had zero hits. When I added a picture I had e-mails the next day. Make sure the item is neat and clean before you photograph it. I also like to set the item against a plain backdrop so it stands out nicely (the less clutter the better).
Example advertisement:
Limited Edition Bing Crosby Christmas Character, Excellent Condition
Price: $10
Location: Somewhere, KS
Description: Limited Edition Bing Crosby Christmas Character, Excellent Condition. Comes with original box, box has seen some wear but is functional. Sings and dances. Would make a great gift! Asking $10 FIRM, CASH only. You pick up. E-mail us if interested!

  • Key words: I always say "price is FIRM" so there's no haggling (it's happened), "CASH only" (you don't want a bounced check), and "you pick up" (you don't want to risk the person not being home- waste of time). The scrambled e-mail Craigslist provides is usually at the top of the page so they can just copy and paste it to their browser of choice.
I hope that answers all your questions! Feel free to ask more if I left something out. Like I said, we have had great experiences with Craigslist. It has been the best way to get cash for items without hosting a time-consuming garage sale.

Happy Craigslist-ing!


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