How to Sell on Craigslist Like a Pro

Toss old items and make money. Here, what works:

Reader's Digest Magazine | February 2013
How to Sell on Craigslist Like a ProGetty Images

Looking for proven tricks on how to sell your things on Craigslist? Try these tips from the experts.

Write a Winning Headline
Most Craigslist shoppers know what they’re looking for. Create a concise headline with one perfect adjective. Avoid all caps and rows of exclamation points—they look amateur.

Post Photos That Sell
Upload one full-length picture of the item and a few close-up shots from various angles. Make sure photos are 800 pixels wide so shoppers won’t have to scroll to see your coffeemaker.

Make It a Clear Write-up
Put descriptive keywords at the bottom of your ad, and opt
for a bulleted list to outline key features—like brand, condition, and size—rather than hiding points in a block of text.

Thursday Posts Do Best
Add your goods between 6 and 7 p.m. on Thursday to target weekend bargain shoppers. If items haven’t sold by Friday, delete the listing and repost on Saturday to keep the sale feeling fresh.

Be Smart About Price
Haggling seals the deal online. Don’t say you’re firm on pricing. If you are set on a certain amount, ask for more money than you’ll accept and meet somewhere in the middle.

Offer Help Moving
Make it easier for shoppers to take large products home. If a prospective buyer lives nearby, offer to deliver the sofa to his house. If he doesn’t, give him the name of a cheap moving company.

Provide a Safe E-mail
Select the option that allows people to e-mail you through Craigslist. Also, to keep creepers from continuing to call, sign up for a Google Voice number, which you can toss after the sale.

Go with Total Honesty
If you’re selling a big item like a car, be up-front with your reasoning. Are you due for a vehicle upgrade? Is the engine sticky? Be open, and keep others from drawing their own conclusions.

Sources: Yahoo! Shine,,,, Yahoo! Voices,,,,

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  • Your Comments

    • Hopscotch776

      On small items or anything you can squeeze into your car meet in a safe place. Trust no one no matter how nice they seem. If it doesn’t feel good walk away, usually another buyer will bite within a couple of days. I also have met people in the parking lot of my local police station, if they don’t want to meet there then I don’t want to meet them. Always try to have a phone conversation before meeting to decide it you want to. Try to take a buddy or tell a friend where you’re going.

    • xchief

      The article left out the most important item, payment. Counterfiet bank checks, money orders and even cash is out there and being used on unsuspecting sellers. Paypal is even being scamed by the pros. Be very careful.

    • Scott

      Don’t forget to use caution. You are basically inviting people into your home and, in may cases, given them your phone number as well.