How To Sell On Craigslist For Beginners

Craigslist is an easy-to-use online marketplace where you can sell your old stuff, think of that old phone you don`t know what to do with, then think of Craigslist, it`s a marketplace like a yard sale where anything can be sold.

This post will guide you on how to sell on Craigslist for beginners. Never sold anything online?

By the end of this post, you`ll know exactly how to sell on this very active online marketplace finding interested buyers, shipping, and all that good stuff.

It costs you nothing to join, create a craigslist account and sell there. It connects all sorts of buyers and sellers , think of a shopping mall filled with potential buyers.

You can sell unwanted items you don’t need or scroll through Craigslist postings to buy stuff at an affordable price and save money still it`s just the perfect place to make or save money.

Now if you`ve never sold an item on an online auction site, this may sound daunting, but this post will give you all the tips you need to make your first sale on Craigslist.

Anyone can sell on craigslist, even if you`ve never sold anything online. Having said that, it`s not as simple as placing an ad and hoping for a sale.

You need to have a plan in place, like a clear call to action, an advertisement that is easy to understand(written in plain English), quality images of the product you`re selling and a price.
Just posting on Craigslist does not mean that you will make the sale just like that.
It requires strategic planning and marketing skills to accomplish success in making a quick sale at a good price. 

You need to have a good sales plan, have a good photo of your item or whatever you are wanting to sell, an attractive price and not to forget, an awesome sales pitch using the advertisement. 

Some of the successful tips are given below, especially for those who are new to the platform. How to sell on craigslist even as a beginner who`s never sold in an auction site

How To Sell On Craigslist For Beginners

Research Before You Start

In the beginning, people tend to jump into things without doing proper research to get to know the platform.

First, you need to observe and study the marketplace. Check out your competition.

Find what sells more and what are the strategies used by sellers that are selling stuff left and right, observe and learn.

Think of ways how you can improve that strategy for yourself and implement it in your selling. 

Learn how other sellers describe their products, how they present the images, and what details they give.

Every little detail you can learn is a bonus to you maybe not for the present but for your future sales when you have big-ticket items to sell.

Craigslist is, without a doubt, a very competitive online marketplace for anyone who`s looking for bargains online.

It is not uncommon to have multiple sellers selling the same stuff. Hence, it is important to find out the best price and present your Craigslist listing carefully.

Prepare the best description of the items. Include the necessary details, including a good photo of your item, not forgetting to list your item in a  specific category where they belong.

Now when I talk of a good photo, I don`t mean going out to hire a photographer or getting a new camera, your smart phone picture is enough provided it can take clear images in natural light.

Remember Craigslist is for extra items people have, so don`t be shy to mention any dents or negatives your product may have.

Related and relevant information to the product and an attractive price, it`s better to let the buyer know beforehand than for them to buy the product and find out about the scratches, wear and tear or dents.

Upload High-Definition ImagesSelling on Craigslist

Listings with good-quality images tend to attract more customers. It helps in making a quick sale.

Craigslist allows four pictures per post.

Make the most of it by clicking pictures with a high-resolution digital camera.

Blurry and bad-quality images must be avoided at all costs. Edit images if you have to, not to look professional but just some touches if needed.

Remember to clean the item as well as use a plain and uncluttered background for the pictures. Just because an item is an antique, it does not excuse you to post it looking uncared for.

Use A Catchy Headline For Your Product

Your headline is the first thing that catches the interest of the customers.

Just like in a newspaper, the headline is the first thing that catches your interest and you proceed to read further to get into its details.
If the headline is not interesting, a user will just pass it by.But I'm Not An Expert!: Go from newbie to expert and radically skyrocket your influence without feeling like a fraud by [Kothand, Meera]

While writing a headline, try and include searchable keywords related to the item. Keep it comprehensive.

Product Description

When writing headlines for craigslist products for sale do not just write a long and hard-to-read post.

I`d suggest easy to read, easy-to-follow description.

  • HeadlineThis is where you introduce the item you`re selling. Make your heading in large fonts because this is the first contact readers will have with your product. (You can use H3 tags)
  • Subheadingcall to action here if you`re unsure).
  • Writing your Sales Copy-This is where you explain the product in detail, use good font size, focus on the product benefit and how it will improve the lives of the buyer.

Be Mindful Of The Pricing When Selling On Craigslist

Do not set too high a price that will repel the buyers. At the same time, do not set the price too low. It will put a question mark on the product’s quality. Find a balance. 

Prepare To NegotiateHow To Sell On Craigslist For Beginners

People come on Craigslist looking for a good deal. But it should not leave in a loss.

Keeping a buffer when you are setting the price always works. It gives you room to maneuver.

However, you have to prepare yourself for price negotiation as well and convince the buyer that they are indeed getting a good deal. 

If you`ve been on a vacation where hawkers sell artifacts on the street then I`m sure you`ve negotiated a product before.

Be ready to negotiate if you`re selling on craigslist. Buyers on craigslist are looking for deals, having said that, you don`t have to give your products at throw-away prices.

Keep Re-posting

If your item does not sell on craigslist on the first go, delete the previous listing and re-post the item.

Re-posting is suggested because, after 48 hours of your listing the item, there is a high chance that your listing does not appear at the top in the search results.

Why isn`t my stuff selling on Craigslist? this is something you might ask if you`re a new seller and you`ve posted several times without making a sale.

Check other listings and see how they present their products.

Tweak your headline and product description, try to write as good a copy as you can.

Just because there is a delay in making a sale does not mean you`ll not sell your product. There is no given time for how long it will take you to make a sale.

As a newbie, there will always be trial and error before you are a top seller on any online auction site.

Some also suggest posting at specific days or times, but I really do not agree 100%, it`s always five pm somewhere(happy hour time). Plus, people look for items day and night.

But if you`re interested in the best day to list on Craigslist, you can check this post from
Include Your Contact Details In The Listing

Contact details are important as it keeps you connected with the buyers.

Buyers also can contact you for any queries and issues. The older buyers are not very tech-savvy so they prefer getting in touch through the phone.

So, include your phone number as well. Calling makes the sales process faster and more direct.

The exchange of emails slows down the negotiating and sale process, not everyone checks their emails every 6 hours( I know I check mine every 4 hours when I`m able).

Hence, buyers prefer the phone number to get confirmation instantly and it also makes them trust you more as a real person.

Sharing the phone number also creates a good impression. It tells the potential buyer that you are a genuine seller. 

Include a Link Of The Website

This is needed in case you are listing any big or expensive item such as a used car or an item of antique furniture.

With these items, buyers require as much information as possible.

Due to limited Ad space on Craigslist, it is often not possible to include that much information.

Therefore, you can include the link to the website or create a blog and link it to your listing.

Selling a $100 book on Craigslist is easier to do with a few words description, but selling high-dollar items might need an in-depth, longer in-detail description.

You can do this by creating a 1-page blog where you`re free to write all the details needed without leaving anything out for lack of space.

Never created a blog before? Click the image below and You`ll be taken to where you can create your first blog in minutes totally free of charge.

how to earn residual income onlineAlways Keep Delivery Plan in Place Beforehand 

This is a crucial point of selling for sellers.

If you are planning on selling big items such as furniture, electronics, etc then you need to have a delivery mode and plan in place.

You need not own a minivan to accomplish delivering big items.

You can hire a U-Haul and other such services but this needs to be planned. 

Another option to consider is a collection by the buyer, where the buyer arranges his own transportation for bulky/heavy items.

Use Common Sense

Do not ever agree to meet a buyer at any isolated place. Always meet at a public place if it is necessary. Supermarket parking lots are usually busy, arrange to meet at such a place.

If you have made the sale then always accept the payment either in cash or money order only. There are Craigslist horrible stories out there, remember  The Craigslist Killerthese things can happen anywhere but it helps to be careful.

Create a separate email address as contact details for selling. Do not share more personal information than necessary.

Conclusion on Selling On CraigslistHow to sell on Craigslist and make money

Craigslist is a very common name for young adults these days.

It has contributed significantly to the millennial’s overall internet experience.

Much like Google and Wikipedia.

Craigslist attracts an estimated 60 million visitors every month. It is, without a doubt, one of the best online selling options for free.

It offers an excellent opportunity to earn decent money even in the bargain.

Those unwanted Christmas sweaters you got as a present, the killer heels you no longer wear, that old digital camera you do not use because you now have a good quality phone to take high-quality photos can all be turned into cash on Craigslist.

Almost everything and anything sells on Craigslist so give it a go even if you`re new to selling on the platform.

You might be surprised at how much money you can make with items just lying around unloved and ignored in your garage.

Did you find this article helpful? or have you tried selling an item on craigslist?

Try your hand at selling on Craigslist once and leave us a comment describing your experience. Leave some tips if you have any.

Do share the article on Facebook or Twitter if you find it helpful by using the share buttons so others can benefit from it too.

32 thoughts on “How To Sell On Craigslist For Beginners”

  1. I enjoyed reading this article on how to sell using craigslist. You do not think about it but when you have never attempted to sell an item through a platform like craigslist it can be tricky. I appreciate you shouting out some tips for beginners. I think making sure your photos are high definition and that you are able to negotiate is great advice. People are going to try to slim down the deal so it is good to be ready. Sometimes the logistics of selling online can be tricky so recommending that delivery plan was useful information. I loved the read!

    • Thanks Caleb, I have been shopping online so long and have visited almost all platform out there either as a seller or a buyer. Craigslist, is a place to make quick cash with items you don`t need, provided you get sales (which should not be hard.Ì think anyone who can take ptotos, can use the internet and has ever had a car bootsales can sell on Craigslist with little trial here and there.

  2. This looks like a very popular post, judging by all the responses you have at the bottom. I have heard of Craig’s List but I am not sure if we have anything like that around here. We do have another online site which we have used to sell things. I sold an elliptical machine, is the first thing that comes to mind. Having a good camera on your phone makes taking pictures and posting them much easier. Maybe I will have to look up Craig’s List and see if I can find it around here. Thanks!

    • I then wonder where you are that you do not have craigslist or have you just never sold on the platform`? craigslist is for all the stuff you don`t need and you could make some good cash from stuff you already don`t need .

      Give it a try

  3. Hi Sarganser
    Thanks for sharing your views for the beginners to sell on the craigslist . I heard a lot about this site it in past and was having a doubt whether it is really safe to transact on Craigslist . I am more comfortable after reading your article and know the in depths better. However we must be vigilant and use our guts to understand the guy on the other side .
    Warm Regards,
    Gaurav Gaur

    • Thanks

      Selling online on craigslist should not be hard,speaking of trust, I think this applies in many areas of life.

      The platform is safe and a great place to make extra income, you just have to know how to list products on craigslist.All that gear lying around in your garage, all the outdated electronics,you will find a buyer on craigslist if you list your products accordingly.

  4. Hi Sarganser & Ntmu. I have been reading throughout your post/article and, I was really curious what is all about this Craiglist. I even press that blue sign. After that get me to WA. Then reading down the page I’ve found that is for something you have but not wearing or not needed anymore.

    The site, Craiglist, the action site that anyone can sell anything is an amazing site.. How I didn’t know about this before. I have so much to sell, as you said, that sweater & so on, I do have a real Diamant collar but is not with me. So I believe is time to go.

    Overall, I love and I am thanking you for sharing this wonderful supper post. It was educational and descriptive and, mostly is for the newbies like me. I appreciate

    Thank you for sharing this.

    • Glad you found the post useful, Craigslist makes it possible for anyone to sell, that item you`ve been keeping in your garage can bring in good money if listed on craigslist properly.

  5. I have used Craigslist a few times with mixed success.  Your article, with the very specific tips, was good to find because I think it will help me be more successful.  When items do not sell, I had not thought of relisting them completely as you suggest.  This seems like a good idea.  If an ad isn’t working, change it up.  As well, I have never looked at what others are doing with the same items.  Your suggestion to research price and content of similar items makes sense.  I am going to post a couple of things on Craigslist later today putting your suggestions in place.  Thanks.

    • Thanks for stopping by, mixed success is normal when selling, there might not be the right people at that moment for a product you’re selling, so it helps to just re-list if an item is not sold.Craigslist makes this possible and at the end, I`m sure anything and everything will sell.

  6. Hi, Thanks for this awesome guide on how to sell on Craigslist. I have never heard of Craigslist before but reading the guide and our to strategies to sell on Craigslist it sound to me more lie Fiverr that because I use to offer service on Fiverr before. It is a great that anyone can sell on Craiglist. I think this will be a very good platform for those with a lot of unwanted materials and in need of cash. I totally agree when you say that Research needs to be done before deciding to start selling on the this platform it will ensure you are successful in the long run. Also studying your competition is crucial if you want to succeed in such platform. Thanks again!   

  7. I have known about Craigs List for many years, but I have never bought or sold anything on Craigs List. Wow, with approximately 60 million visitors every month, it is well worth registering to sell things on Craigs List. 

    You have included some great tips and specially that one must never meet the buyer in a quiet location and accept cash or money orders only.

    • Thanks for stopping by, I love Craigslist more for buying than selling, I like the “almost free” bargains you can snap there.

      I do like rare,hard to find products and that`s what keeps me going back, again and again, to check for items there.

  8. Well this is definitely what I have been eating. A detailed concise and thorough article that explains how to sell On craigslist. I have not been able to find another article that is is concise as this one, and as beginner friendly. I really appreciate the information you’ve presented here for newbies like myself. I will be coming back for more, I have bookmarked your site

  9. I really need to look around and see value in things i no longer use. Thanks for such a great article inspiring me to sell some stuff on Craigslist. Do you think FB market made people forget about Craigslist?

    • Those items you no longer need could bring in some serious extra cash. We have too many items lying around that we do not realize can fetch good money in auction sites.

  10. Thanks for your great and informative article.

    I’ve been trying for a long time to sell products on Craigslist. but I don’t know how to sell products on Craigslist. but thanks to you It Helped me to learn about selling products on Craigslist. Because you describe it so accurately that I have never seen it before on Google. You have highlighted all the points about selling products on Craigslist that will help us a lot. Thanks, Finally, I can sell products on Craigslist. Your article really helps me a lot and also for those people who want to sell products on this platform.

    Once again thank you so much.

  11. Hello there! Nice review on Craigslist, I completely have no doubts about this site as Craigslist’s founder Craig Newmark and CEO Jim Buckmaster has built a reputation for themselves over the years. One thing I admire about the site is that the sign up process is easy and painless. 

    For me, giving this a try won’t be a bad idea.

  12. Thanks for your detailed article on selling with Craigslist. I have known about this site for many years but never actually sold anything on there. I can see that it could be very lucrative if you have the right product or service to promote. Do you think that affiliate products would work on Graigslist or is it better to promote physical products that you own? Good article and very interesting I will be looking at this more closely.

    • Hello Martin

      Personally, I will not sell affiliate products on Craigslist for a simple reason.For some affiliate products you might not have images for products, from experience, it`s better to use craigslist to sell physical products.

      Having said that, most affiliate programs will not accept you as an affiliate unless you have a website,Craigslist is a hands-on while your own website, with the right products and good quality post, you can make sales any time every time.

  13. This is really great to see and I’m delighted you have shared this here. In truth, I must say that I have never sold on craiglist, but I have people who have sold and are really respectful about it. I must say that the way you have highlighted all these here really makes it really great to see. Thank you.
    the things you said here are massive and I will try to make use of them too. Thanks

    • You don`t only need to be a seller on craigslist, you can always visit the site to look for bargains,the site do have some great articles at low-cost prices. But just like any other auction sites, always be careful when buying,there are always some untrustworthy people out there.

      Good luck and I hope you can soon visit Craigslist, it`s a great place if you`re looking for a place to declutter, instead of dumping everything out, check what you can sell and make some money online. 

  14. Thank you for reminding us not to ever meet with a stranger in an isolated place when it comes to not only Craigslist but any other kind of marketplace where person to person transactions are involved. Sixty million visitors every month on Craigslist is great. Now that I have read your article, I will surely be taking another look at their website. Thank you so much for this!

    • Glad you found the article informative Sharon, Craigslist is where you can sell your unused items and make extra money without having to meer someone because if it`s a small product, you can always ship it.

  15. I haven’t used Craigslist for years, and I had actually forgotten all about it until I came across this article. 

    Thank you for the useful tips on selling on this platform. I think I gave up because I never sold anything and also because being in South Africa, the shipping overseas works out really expensive, so I decided to stick to local platforms rather.

    I wonder if I should go back and try and sell memberships to my site there. Worth a try, but I think the site is mainly aimed at tangible products.

    • I totally understand you, I live in Switzerland and our postage is not the cheapest around, so like you, I only buy items on local sites but if I find something on craigslist I feel is a must-have, I do try to negotiate shipping charges before I purchase.

      Having said that, local sites tend to have less selection of goods so checking Craigslist from time to time does not hurt.

  16. So many people forget about CraigsList as a resource! It is still a great place to buy and sell. 

    I recently sold a DSLR camera that had been sitting in a closet untouched for years. It was really easy to create the post, take and upload a couple photos, and publish it. 

    I got a few emails right away with low-ball offers and decided to stick it out a little longer before accepting one. Turns out, it took a week to find my full-price buyer! I made 300 bucks! 

    • See, $300 for a camera that was just sitting around gathering dust.I wish more people could sell on Craigslist or any other online auction site instead of holding on to items they do not need.

      It`s true, selling on Auction sites, you should be ready to negotiate prices as most people on auction sites are looking for items they can buy at the lowest dollar.


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