How to Sell on Craigslist

How to sell on craigslist

Selling on Craigslist can be an intimidating thing. However, it can also be a wonderful thing. If you ever sell on Ebay, you know that you lose about 15% of your sale due to Ebay and Paypal fees. Additionally, there's packaging and shipping involved. With Craiglist, there are no fees and the transaction is a one-stop-shop! Meeting people in person is a strange concept, but it's what Craigslist is about! There are some things you can do to make the process of selling on Craigslist a lot easier.

First, I better give the details specifically on how to sell on Craigslist. Head to and click on any of the categories (like, "for sale" or "collectibles" for example). In the upper right portion of the page, you'll see the word "post". Click that and follow the steps. That's all there is to the technical part of listing! Make sure to turn off your location so your exact location is not on the map that everyone sees.

Here are some tips for how to sell on Craigslist:

Take good pictures.
Good pictures will help your cause ten-fold. Nobody wants a fuzzy or teeny tiny picture. You are selling something, so act like it! Take close-up, good quality pictures that clearly show the item, its condition and any other necessary elements. If your item has obvious blemishes, photograph them. Being 100% honest about your product will save you heartache later.

Check your email.
Craigslist buyers are generally impatient. Most likely, whatever you are selling on CL can be found from several other sellers as well. If you are going to list something for sale, plan on checking your email frequently throughout the day to make sure you're responding to questions and interested parties. Potential buyers won't stop looking for their item once they email you, so you want to be there to respond quickly and snatch up the sale.

State your price up front.
Nobody wants to dance around. Say what you have and state what you want to get for it. If you want $200 for your TV, say so. "Contact me for price" never works. What people do is they just find someone else who is selling the same thing and actually listing the price.

Exchange phone numbers.
This is stepping over the comfort line for most people, but is becoming extremely commonplace with Craigslist sales. A buyer gains a bit of confidence from a seller willing to provide their phone number. And they lose a TON of buying confidence when a seller refuses. Why are they refusing? Is their product going to be a dud? Are they going to rob me? Which brings me to my next point.

I cannot stress this enough. Meet in public whether you are buying or selling. Pick some place VERY PUBLIC. I prefer a Starbucks parking lot (lots of foot traffic) or a grocery store parking lot. Parks, homes and street corners should be out of the question. Go with your gut. If you pull up and don't like what you see, just keep moving.

An ideal transaction would go like this:
• you post an item for sale using nice pictures and an accurate description
• a buyer contacts you through Craigslist's system and expresses interest
• you answer whatever questions the buyer has and arrange to set up a meeting
• at the meeting, your buyer inspects your product and is satisfied, because your item is exactly as described
• buyer gives you money, you give buyer product and you part ways

That's it!

*If you're buying, you can pretty much apply these same tips.

Have you sold stuff on Craigslist?

How was your transaction?


  1. Great tips. You can never be too careful when selling anything to strangers. The more pubic the better indeed!

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