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How to use Craigslist for your business

For over 25 years Craigslist has been functioning as a platform that advertises ads, jobs, housing, display of services and more. This platform just like many social media platforms out there have millions of active users daily. In this post, I will be discussing a variety of topics related to Craigslist as well as how I use Craigslist for your business. Hopefully, this will add some value to your research for those looking to extend their reach and continue creating that digital footprint.

craigslist screen shot

Understanding the fundamentals of Craigslist

If you aren’t familiar with Craigslist, it is an online platform that displays local classifieds from over 450 cities. Craigslist advertises local housing, jobs, services, particularly any category you can think of.

So how does this help your business? Well for starters let’s talk about the 50 “billion” users that are on Craigslist every month. I mean if that isn’t some motivation to extend your reach then I don’t know what else is.

Using Craigslist to help you gain potential or future customers can be extremely beneficial to your next business goals. Although not everyone is in the market to buy a specific product or service at that particular moment, they will always have you in the back of their minds. So you almost create like a future pipeline this is a great way to get have continuous clients.

When people are on Craigslist, they are either looking for something specific, or they stumble upon your post. Having a professional social appearance will help transfer your Craigslist viewers to your social channels which can lead to longtime clients. So don’t forget to add your social channels on your post.

How do you advertise on Craigslist?

If you are providing a product or service and looking to extend your reach in the online space, then definitely take the time to learn the CL platform. To advertise on CL can range depending on the service you are providing. It’s very affordable and also helps you generate leads.

On the platform, you have several categories that you can choose from to advertise your business. You can even offer free services as well to build up your portfolio if you are starting out of course.

The categories are broken up into sub-categories depending on the type of service you are providing. In my case, I am a Technical Writer. So the way I advertise is under the “services” category write / edit.

Know what cities to post

When advertising your business on CL, make sure you post within the designated cities that have the most traffic. This link will help you determine what cities you can post that would get you the most views. Craigslist GEO 

Understanding where to post is crucial to gaining present and future clients. The cities that are bolded are the most visited cities.

If you end up posting an ad in a city that doesn’t have a lot of traffic, then chances are you will be wasting your money. Trust me; it has happened to me in the past. But on the other hand, you might generate a lead from just one posting.

Have a catchy title

The average person has 6 seconds to scan your content to see if this is something they want to take the time out to read. So having a catchy title is going to help you drive your audience in.

I offer Technical Writing services, and my title starts with a simple star emoji. Yes, I know those emojis are the death of me :). I love them. But it works. As your scrolling down the content, the first thing that will catch your eye is the star emoji.

screenshot of craigslist ad














It may not be significant for some, but I have interviewed clients in the past and asked what was it about my ad that stands out. 9xs out of 10 it was the star emoji I have implemented within my text.

Add pictures to your ads

Please don’t be the one that has no images in your post. People are very visual creatures, and we like to see what we are getting ourselves in to.  I have a photo of myself to make it more personable for people.

Images can help people see that I am a real human and not just some scammer that is going to take their money, the more pictures you add, the better it will help you out.

If you need more clarification on how to post on Craigslist try this Wiki post.

Use keywords

Using keywords will help people find your post online. Make sure that you use keywords related to your advertising and that you are using it the right way.

There are many keyword tools that you can use for free like Jaaxy. So do some research and determine which one works best for you. I created a post to help you better understand all about keywords and how you can add them to your content.

Understanding keywords

This will give you better clarity on how to use the Jaaxy platform and add it to your content. Anything that you post on Craigslist has a link associated with it so that you can share it on different social platforms.

This will also help people find you and share your links. Remember whatever you post is searchable online.

Write a read to action description

When creating your very first Craigslist post for your business make sure that you are as descriptive as possible, You want to catch the reader’s attention and try to answer all of their questions within the post so that they understand what you are offering.

Direct them to your social channels

Online icons










Facebook, Instagram, Linkedin all the social channels that you can share with your prospective clients.  If you have a reader that started following you on Instagram and they are not ready to buy chances are they will become future clients.

Final Thoughts on how to use Craigslist for your business

So now that you are familiar with some of the different ways on how to use Craigslist for your business, you can start applying it. Whether you are a new business owner or a freelancer, its always good to extend your reach to others within the community. Even if you have a large corporation, it’s still good to extend your reach and familiarize yourself with people all over.

This will help you stay memorable and relevant. If you have any business ideas you want to share, please go ahead and let us know how do you extend your reach to others.


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13 thoughts on “How to use Craigslist for your business”

  1. I have just recently started to do some research on using Craigslist for my online business. I had no idea Craigslist had an audience of over 50 billion users every month, that is insane. Do you have any suggestions on how I would go about using CL to promote my online business? I am in the health/fitness niche. With so many users, this sounds like a platform that may be great for me. Thanks for the in-depth look at Craigslist, I look forward to hearing back from you.

    1. Hi, Steve thank you so much for reading my post. Yes, absolutely so there are ways where you can create free ads or paid ads. I pay $5 a month to extend my services to users. If I end up doing a free one I just offer as a free review. Getting connected within the community is a good idea too, they have a forum section. Hope this helps 🙂

  2. You’ve shared some really valuable points on how to get leads and create a positive following for ongoing business using Craigslist. You certainly write beautifully and clearly which helps to understand what Craigslist is about. You’re very perceptive and have shared some valuable tips. I would be very curious to see how many people take your advice and start using a star in their title! Hey whatever works, and you’ve found a star works for you! You also made a very good point about using pictures, yes we are very visual generally speaking. If this post doesn’t help people improve their earnings from Craigslist, then I don’t know what will. Thanks for sharing.

  3. Hi Munoz,

    Great article with lots of details, showing how Craigslist works, how to use it to be a success I found it to be very helpful, but isn’t this just for those who live in the US?

    l live in Canada so my first thought would be to use Kijii but not sure if they allow you to advertise or promote online businesses, will have to check it out.

    Do you have any sites or suggestions for those of us living in Canada?

  4. Derek Marshall

    Definitely a “way out there” idea for advertising your business online. I often wondered is Craigs list was still running or anyone actually still visited the site (I know I haven’t for about 10 years!).

    It is often those “way out there” thinking outside of the box ideas and opportunities that yield very profitable results.

    Having a look at this. Craigs list certainly contains a few elements of my target audience.

    Thanks for the idea and inspiration.

    1. Hi, Derek thank you for your comment yes so there are approximately 50 billion users on Craigslist every month. You’d be surprised how many people are on this platform.

  5. Interesting post, who would have thought craigslist has 50 billion visitors a month. I don’t even know if there is such a thing as craigslist in the UK. I can see why you would want to go on there to look for potential customers.

    Thanks for the info on how to get yourself noticed on craigslist. It makes sense what you say.


  6. Hi Munoz,
    Fantastic article. How would I place an ad for my niche which is all based on cats? I have been advertising on Facebook once a week and other social networks but, I never thought of using CL. I wouldn’t know what to write for an ad since it would be just to bring people to my site.

    What advice do you have for me?
    Thank you so much,
    Donna Rayne

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