Craigslist is a powerful tool if you know how to use it right. Thousands of people check ads each day, already in the mindset of buying things, so it’s great if you learn to use it to your advantage.
Create a Craigslist account to keep track of your posts. Every time a post expires, you can renew it from your account page, which makes it nice and convenient. Craigslist frowns on posting to multiple cities, but it’s still allowed, as long as you don’t post duplicate posts. I probably shouldn’t share this online, but as long as you change up the titles, you can usually post the same item in a few cities, but make the titles different! Pick a few different descriptive keywords for each post’s title to cover more ground.
When choosing cities, it actually works to your advantage to choose smaller cities. If you choose a big city, your post will be buried on the fourth page within hours, but go with a smaller city or area and your post could be on the front page for a week. Plus, the busy cities tend to expire posts every 7 days, but the rest usually give it 30-45 days!
Now. On to writing your ad. First and foremost, learn the basics of HTML. Craigslist not only allows html in its postings, it doesn’t even automatically format the descriptions when you enter them. For instance, every time you hit enter to start a new line or paragraph, you’ll need to use code. For one line, enter <br> (for line break). To go down two lines, you can enter <br><br> or you can do <p> to start a new paragraph. If you want to center your paragraph or heading, you can enter <p align=”center>, which will start a new paragraph AND center it. Just know though, that every time you start a new paragraph, you’ll have to enter the same code to center it again. There’s a ton of ways you can format text with HTML, you can bold it, italicize, make bullet points, and more. Just use the right command, and the post is your oyster.
Next, learn to insert clickable links into your description. If you just want text to become a link, enter <a href=”http://yoursite.com/”>Adorable Site Name Here</a>. The </a> closes the link. Do NOT forget to close the link, or you might turn the entire page into one big, messy link that you can’t get out of. I’ve been there. For extra pizzazz, you can turn an image into a nifty link as well. Simply upload the image or logo to your server and remember the name of it. Then enter <a href=”http://yoursite.com/”><img src=”http://yoursite.com/logo.jpg></a>.
Those are the basics. And of course, EDIT all your posts for grammar or spelling errors. Don’t trust spellcheck! At first, your posts may be simple and text-heavy, but that’s okay. It can take a little while to get the hang of things. Just make sure your site address with a link is in there!