Welcome to part II of our blog featuring the article, Marketing on Craigslist. Last week we covered what sells best on Craigslist, identifying your market, and building ads. Today we will cover tracking results (you want to know how awesome you’re doing, right?), community commitment, and selling safely (majorly important one). Keep reading and start boosting, yo.
“Marketing Your Business on Craigslist
If you plan to post in multiple cities and offer specific promotions, tracking which ads produce the best results is important. You can track a Craigslist ad by e-mail, phone number or website referral. Each tracking mechanism should feature a unique component like a custom e-mail address, telephone extension or website referral code. How you choose to track should depend on your industry and the typical methods customer use to communicate with you. Unlike eBay, Craigslist does not provide you with any demographic or tracking data.
Regardless of whether you sell a product or service, it’s important to understand the competitive landscape on a daily or weekly basis. Supply and demand for certain products or services will fluctuate. Take the time to get to know the other players in your cities or categories. If you see a rush on a certain product, focus on something complimentary. For instance, if you’re a mattress wholesaler and see that a large number of a specific brand and/or size mattresses are flooding your market, either price match or focus your energy on a different size or bed frame until the market stabilizes. Also, take into consideration the season and the demographic (both income and recreational) of the cities in which you post. In the winter, a snowmobile will not sell nearly as well in California as it will in Vermont.
As an open market, Craigslist welcomes sellers from all walks of life. Keep in mind that as a business owner, you’re just as likely to compete with everyday people selling the contents of their attic as you are a national brand retailer with sights on breaking into your market. The community element sets Craigslist apart from its competitors. Harness the power of your community by doing more than just posting. The most trafficked area of Craigslist is the forums. Use the forums to communicate with fellow sellers and potential buyers or to establish an active, ethical voice for your business.
Fraud exists in every corner of the business world, both online and offline. The anonymous nature of Craigslist–the very thing that makes it so popular–is also the reason you should take measures to protect yourself against fraud. With no member or seller ratings system, Craigslist can fall prey to scam artists. Make an effort to talk to each new customer via phone, only ship items once payment is received, and always use your best judgment when it comes to business transactions.
Craigslist continues to experience rapid growth–additional cities have come online in recent months and more are expected to launch throughout the next year. The buzz about this great resource is sweeping the nation, and every day people from all over the world are visiting the site, looking to buy from trusted sellers and service providers. Get in on the action by harnessing the marketing power of Craigslist.
Shanon Lewis is a web-marketing expert who specializes in marketing on Craigslist. She’s also the author of The Unofficial Craigslist Book and regularly shares her wisdom on Craigslist and online marketing at her popular blog.”
So get out there and Craigslist it up! Contact us if you’re in need of some inbound marketing, IT consulting, or a super sweet site that will make you and your product look as legit as you are. Until next time, stay chill NSquared readers.