3 Reasons Craigslist.org is Smarter than eBay

For some of you, this is old news, but I recently read a great article about Craigslist testing written by Mat Siltala. He did some tests with listing strategies on Craigslist and made $500 in 10 minutes. That’s right – a “get rich quick” scheme that really works!

If you’re new to Craigslist.org and don’t know what it is, let me share 5 reasons why Craigslist.org is smarter than eBay:

  1. FREE, FREE, FREE: that’s right. No listing fees, no selling fees, limited worries about shipping. With eBay, you have to pay to list whether the product sells or not, you have to pay a transaction fee when the product does sell, and then there are the “little things” that can really add up – extra pictures fees, gallery picture fees, bold text, sub-titles, buy it now options, and the list goes on and on. Craigslist does charge for certain things. Here are a few of them: Q: How does craigslist support its operations?
    A: By charging below-market fees for job ads in 7 cities, and for brokered apartment listings in NYC.

    Q:
    How much are job ads?
    A: $25 for NYC, LA, DC, Boston, Seattle, and San Diego, and $75 in SF.
  2. Potentially quicker transaction time. Just like my friend Mat, you can make money in minutes. I talked in another post about the success of a few of my clients and my own personal Craigslist Success. If you list a product effectively, your phone (or email) may be going crazy with buyers.
  3. Less worry about getting burned by shipping fees. Unfortunately, I’ve had a few clients who have seen great results selling products on eBay; however, they didn’t factor in the correct shipping and ended up having to pay quite a bit to ship the products sold. If done correctly, this can be avoided with eBay. In Craigslist sales, they actually warn you about shipping and other things.

I’m going to put Mat’s research to the test with some things I have around the house.  I’ll let you know how it goes.

******* I also challenge all subscribers to Moller Marketing to put this study to the test.  The participants who see results and let me know, either by making a comment or sending an email, will have their website featured on http://mollermarketing.com, and I will personally give them a Link on my blogroll for the entire month of September.  Let the games begin!  This game ends on September 1, 2007.*******

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46 Replies to “3 Reasons Craigslist.org is Smarter than eBay”

  1. Clear and to the point Nate.
    It’s great for you to have this place for people to respond. We certainly can learn from all.

  2. I do like the no shipping cost worries and free listing is great. Just waiting to hear from things I have on there

  3. Matt had good advise about using caps and catchy wording. When I listed our rental property I used the title
    ***CLEAN FAMILY HOME*** and in the body put Won’t Last Long. 50 minutes to the first response.

  4. Check out the things you can buy for Christmas on line and cheap too. Don’t drive to a store when you can shop from your easy chair sit back and relax and shop. Save gas money more to spend on family & friends.

  5. I like the simplicity of Craig’s List – in addition to the fact that it is free. However, in either case, it all depends on what you are trying to sell. My experience is that “what” are you trying to sell makes all the difference. It is kind of like how important location is when you are selling real estate.

    I have to admit, I have been wondering how they were making their money…

    1. Yeah, I’ve seen some great success with clients selling cars on Craigslist or bigger items that would be hard to ship. It’d be interesting to see a case study about the most “sellable” items on Craigslist.

      They make their money in a few ways – the real estate listings and sponsors or joint ventures. Although I don’t know the second way is a complete FACT, I know that if they are not monetizing their HUGE database, their missing out!

      Keep me posted on sales!

  6. I’m new to Craigslist. So far so good! A lot of people are interested in buying my Outsider Art. I don’t know if it is a coincidence, but none of those who contacted me left their phone # to speak with them about the potential sale of my art and the details regarding the transaction.
    Maybe they are a bit hesitant to give out their phone # because they really don’t know me. I have their email address. When thousands of dollars are involved in a purchase of art I would think they would want to talk to me on the phone before sending me a Cashier’s Check. Who Knows? Maybe they are wealthy because they mentioned to me in an email they will have a personal shipper come to my studio and pick up the art piece after the check they send me, clears. If the sale becomes complete then I will definetly say that Craigslist “Rocks”!!!!!!!!!But at this time I am a bit skeptical, only because I know the type of world we live in. I must add that Craigslist’s free service is awesome and appreciate their service.

  7. All the articles I have read are extremely helpful. Learning about eCommerce, Craigslist vs eBay are definitely expanding both my knowledge and creative thoughts.

  8. I have had great success buying and selling furniture on Craig’s list. Some smaller items have not gone, but I am going to try again and maybe group them or just try new wording. We’ll see! But I love the ease of listing and the FREE part. That all helps profits go further!

  9. Well, I finally got to put into action the challenge made back in August. Late I know but here are my results as of now. I listed an item with the **MUST SELL** and got fast results but all the replies wanted me to reduce my price or just asked questions. I took it off the list. Then a few days later I put the item back on the list and took off the fancy symbols and reworded the title. Here is how it went…
    **MUST SELL** Silverware set in wood box. All I got were questions and very low offers. Here is how it sold in about 1/2 hour. Formal Cutlery set in cherry wood box $35.00. No fancy anything but the wording made a big, big difference. The price was the same. I had great photos for both listings and used the same photos. So in my experience the K-I-S-S (Keep it simple stupid) method with the solid truth in the title made a big difference in this case. My other items are pending buyers that want me to reduce my prices. So I will be removing them and rewording the title. I’ll let you know what happens.
    Take advantage of Craig’s list while it is still FREE.

  10. Nate,
    I wholeheartedly agree that free is better. I am anxious to try my hand at creating posts similar to Matt’s. I’ll let you know how it turns out!

  11. With it being free and apparently much easier to use than eBay it’s surprising that Craigslist isn’t bigger than eBay.

  12. After truong out both Craigslist and Ebay, I agree that Craigslist is a good choice. It’s a lot easier to post a listing (at least if we compare it with our first ever Ebay auction) and it’s free. Just got to love it !

  13. Craigslist.org is far more user-friendly. Maybe not enough “Help Files” sometimes. Being locally listed makes for a quicker response time. eBay has lots’s of bells and whistles & get’s a little overwhelming at times. Craigslist.org participants likes to bargin up front. My first 2 listings on Craigslist got 3 replies wanting a lower price. LOL (Lot’s of Luck)

  14. Just wanted you to know I had cash in my hands within one hour of my posting and e-mails on the other two within 24 hours. You can’t beat that at all. I will continue to you craig’s list for things around the house. Has anyone used it for new items????

  15. Nate,
    I’m going to get my things gathered and on there today. My husband has bought quite a few things from Craig’s list, I don’t know that he has sold much though. This was a very encouraging article. Thanks!

  16. Great job everyone! I really want to continue this challenge. I’ve seen some amazing things with clients – from renting their home, to selling artwork, to selling a car for over $13,000. I really commend all of you for your hard work and dedication.

    I especially thank Matt Siltala for his instruction and the example he shared about his Craigslist Success to give all of us ideas for our sales on Craigslist.

    EXPECT SUCCESS!!

  17. Hey, these are all great stories that I love to hear. This is the reason I did the post in the first place! Congrats to everyone, and thanks to Nate for bringing this content to his readers!

  18. I’ve listed an item (the only one I have a pic on my computer for) and will let you know. As you know, I previously listed something on their and got no response but this time Iput “MUST SELL”

  19. I am definitely a Craig’s List supporter. We recently purchased a new vehicle, and what they were going to give me for the trade in was too low, so I posted an ad on Craig’s List and sold it within a week for $13,250! It was honestly pretty effortless on my part, and I didn’t post a fancy ad at all, just the year, make, miles & price, not even a picture. So needless to say we’re pretty happy!

  20. I’ve been looking around my house for items I can put on craigs list. I LOVE that the listings are free for my area, your not really out anything if it doesn’t sell. I want to try this out today.

  21. We have listed some items on craigslist, as yet we haven’t made a sale but will continue to list items. We like that it is free to list and there is no selling fee. Also like that it has a broad range of services eg jobs, forums, community as well as classifieds.

  22. Okay, I will take the challenge, even though I’m getting a late start for the deadline….I’m not having much luck on ebay anyway…

  23. good iformation,
    I want to find some items to place on craigs list and see if it is in fact easier than e-bay or at least cheaper.
    thanks,
    Damon

  24. GREAT INFO !

    I’m new on selling items on the net, and I’m trying to sell a couple of things on eBay, but at this point I never valued the benefit of Craig’s list.
    A few months ago a saw an interview with the founder of Craig’s list but during the interview never mentioned all these benefits that you are talking about, Nate so for me is a learning source, that I will visit more often.

    The ad comparisons from Siltala is another lesson !

    Thank You, guys !

  25. I will have to come up with some Craig’s List worthy items to list. I have only read about it so far, but look forward to testing it as another sale’s tool.

  26. We used these ideas and they worked wonderfully! I read this article, then went and posted 3 items onto craigslist. In the title I used stars and the words “MUST SELL” and we were getting emails and phone calls before I even finished posting the last item! We sold the first item within the first hour and the other 2 soon after! So, I was so excited, I thought to myself. If this works this well, I wonder if it would work for real Estate! So, I posted an add and said “Must Sell” and had 2 people call within the hour. One couple came over and looked at the house and made a tentative offer! This was within 3 hours of the ad posting. Bad news, they did back out, but it was still exciting!!!
    You must try this!

  27. As soon as I can get my husband to part with some things, I too will try this out. I can only improve on my past experience with Craig’s list when it comes to sales for my own items.

  28. Thanks once again Nate!

    After this article we are much more excited about trying out Craig’s List and will keep you posted on the items we place there. Wanda

  29. Good Article!

    I tweeked the three items I have listed on Craig’s List, and I am waiting for the feedback.

    It is a lot easier to list there than eBay and not as expensive!

    Thanks,
    Oleta