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Mon May 11 2009 09:05:27

Are eBay Sellers Welcome on Craigslist?

By: Ina Steiner

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I recently interviewed author Michael Miller about his new book, Selling Online 2.0, in which he advocates using Craigslist to sell certain types of products. I have seen an increasing number of eBay sellers reporting they are selling on the popular classifieds site, with certain caveats. So I emailed Craigslist founder Craig Newmark to see who I could speak to about getting more information about seller resources and tools and whether Craigslist encouraged or discouraged this kind of activity.

Craig said he would have to pass, and when I asked why, he said, "There're ongoing issues with eBay that I just can't comment on."

Many readers know the history of eBay's involvement with Craigslist, but a quick recap. eBay bought a percentage of Craigslist from a shareholder, then launched its own classifieds service (Kijiji). Last year, filed a corporate governance lawsuit against Craigslist, which filed a lawsuit against eBay last May for breach of fiduciary duty. (The two are slated to meet in court in June.)

But I just wanted to know if online sellers could list on Craigslist beyond simply listing an occasional item or two. I consulted Michael Miller's book and found a section called, "What Not to Do on Craigslist."

Michael writes that the Craigslist community is very active in policing the site and flag inappropriate listings for Craigslist staffers to review. "They're particularly sensitive about spam and commercial listings - particularly in categories thought to be the province of individuals." He then offers some specific advice for sellers. It appears there's no clearcut greenlight for online sellers on Craigslist.

I also sent an inquiry to Oodle's founder and CEO Craig Donato. Oodle is a search engine for classifieds listings and also powers some of the classifieds for sites such as MySpace, Facebook and Walmart. Donato said Oodle is seeing a lot more eBay sellers on Oodle, and while they haven't actively promoted it, thinks it's very much a good thing.

"The challenge, of course, is that our site (like Craigslist) is set up around a local experience (where you don't buy the item online, you transact offline). Indeed, we encourage people to buy in-person & pay cash to avoid scams."

Clearly there's a lot to know about selling on classifieds sites and the potential pitfalls. Those of you who are willing to share some tips are welcome to do so! In the meantime, check out our podcast interview with Michael Miller.




Comments (22) | Permalink

Readers Comments

Are eBay Sellers Welcome on Craigslist?   Are eBay Sellers Welcome on Craigslist?

by: ebay=penny stock

Mon May 11 09:48:15 2009

Its really to bad that they don't monitor the site better for preditors.

Are eBay Sellers Welcome on Craigslist?   Are eBay Sellers Welcome on Craigslist?

by: www.nuclearjackalope.com

Mon May 11 11:26:41 2009

I have sold on there, and promoted my website. The website ads were not effective, I'd get requests to meet people for $10 items from 100 miles away! BUt I have sold a few things on there locally advertised. Biggest problem so far? Lots of losers that waste your time with no shows. I'd advise that you don't give anyone your adress & meet them in a public place that's open & staffed, like a Mcdonalds.

Are eBay Sellers Welcome on Craigslist?   Are eBay Sellers Welcome on Craigslist?

by: 178196

Mon May 11 12:02:43 2009

I have not tried craigslist for item I sell on ebay. I have used then to advertise my rental properties with great success! Advertised in the local paper and Craigslist and only got calls via CL.

Are eBay Sellers Welcome on Craigslist?   Are eBay Sellers Welcome on Craigslist?

by: James

Mon May 11 12:53:41 2009

I have had an overall good experience selling on Craigslist. Larger items that are difficult to ship and other popular items do pretty well depending on your location.

I try many items on Craigslist first and then if they don't bring close to what I think they should I might try eBay.

I'll accept less on CL because I don't have the hassle of taking 15 pictures, writing a novel length description, paying the ever increasing eBay/PayPal fees and shipping the item. Cash is king.

With eBay imposing ever egregious anti small seller policies, CL has become a viable alternative for certain items.

Are eBay Sellers Welcome on Craigslist?   Are eBay Sellers Welcome on Craigslist?

by: whateverebay

Mon May 11 13:04:16 2009

I can tell you that I know many sellers and former ebay sellers making a full time living off selling o craigslist. As long as you follow the rules and avoid being flagged (most of the flagging is also done by the competition) you can sell as much as you do on eBay. Offering local pick up or delivery does drive the buyers. I always recommend to try Craigslist, people are there to find a bargain and most want it now.

Are eBay Sellers Welcome on Craigslist?   Are eBay Sellers Welcome on Craigslist?

by: Fruity

Mon May 11 15:11:42 2009

I tried Craigslist, I thought the first time in summer 2006, because ebay was telling us all to go 'drive traffic to our ebay listings'. remember? All those phone calls and ebay reps saying create a google blogger blog and link it to your ebay stuff. Well I tried that on craigslist and it was yanked. Someone over on the craigslist area pulled it, almost immediate. I even went to stupid ebay kijiji and tried to point to my ebay listing. It was yanked too but too fast, must be a bot. Anyways, I think that ebay is trying to hide their tracks to not show the DOJ and FTC just how deep they are in control over some of these sites. I have a feeling that it all centers around what ebay is doing to craigslist and CL is pretty much gagged. they can't say anything so CL users must investigate on their own and recognize that any hand tied with ebay is the hand of death! In fact I wouldn't be surprised if Ebay launched a compaign to sic the govt on regulating CL Isn't that funny? Not but a piddly few public record on google about ebay or paypal when you search the senate and house archives. but they sure talk about every other internet site now dont they! Ebays probably got a few plants over at Google too. Google should of a long time shut down some of ebays other domains that are gaming the google index. ok I forgot what I was talking about now. lol

Are eBay Sellers Welcome on Craigslist?   Are eBay Sellers Welcome on Craigslist?

by: Fruity

Mon May 11 15:16:55 2009

oh yeah now I remember my point. The government and regulators and internet postings were all over Paypal before ebay acquired them. They were thinking PP would have so many lawsuits why would any company want them. But once ebay acquires them? Then crickets. And Bill Me Later, well the lawsuits are piling up supposedly.. some postings are also saying.. why would anyone want them? Now I can see govt going after CL and what could happen? Could it put CL in jeopardy to the point they too have to fork it over to Ebay? Just seems to be a very odd thing that search results pull up lots of things against every other company other than Ebay and their companies.

Are eBay Sellers Welcome on Craigslist?   Are eBay Sellers Welcome on Craigslist?

by: Seller

Mon May 11 21:25:02 2009

Ina, did you check the Craigslist terms of service?  They seem pretty clear to me, no need to contact the founder.

Assuming an ''eBay Seller'' is someone regularly and continuously trying to earn a full or part time income selling, all the Craigslist activity I see by eBay Sellers violates one or more of the following:

You agree not to post, email, or otherwise make available Content-

k) that constitutes or contains  ''affiliate marketing,'' ''link referral code,''
''junk mail,'' ''spam,'' ''chain letters,'' ''pyramid schemes,'' or unsolicited
commercial advertisement;

m) that includes links to commercial services or web sites, except as allowed
in ''services'';

v) post non-local or otherwise irrelevant Content, repeatedly post the
same or similar Content or otherwise impose an unreasonable or
disproportionately large load on our infrastructure;

w) post the same item or service in more than one classified category or
forum, or in more than one metropolitan area;

Are eBay Sellers Welcome on Craigslist?   Are eBay Sellers Welcome on Craigslist?

by: Jeff

Mon May 11 22:54:48 2009

Craigslist is a joke.

Flagging is rampant and if you even try to reason with them then they'll flag your ads even if their not in violation.

Heck,even when you price something that they think is to high or to low they'll flag you.They're regulation of the site is nil and none and their a pair of arrogant assholes that like Ebay actually believe they are only a venue and above the law.(Craigslist Killer May Show Them What They Deserve)

It could really be a wonderful site if they would be less concerned about making all profits and actually pay someone to actually regulate the site but when they continually allow competition to flag your ads it goes to show that they care no more about the folks that honestly list there and play by their rules than what Ebay does to their customers (Sellers).

Craigslist is one site I hope Johnny Law does go after.Because even tho' it's free,the flaggers their are out of control.A bunch of armchair lowlifes that actually have their own chatrooms to flag whoever's ads that they decide to on any given day.

If you really want to know the true truths about Craigslist just google Craigslist.com.

Are eBay Sellers Welcome on Craigslist?   Are eBay Sellers Welcome on Craigslist?

by: Amanda

Tue May 12 00:21:45 2009

@Jeff,
What in the world are you posting on CL?  Nothing I post ever gets flagged down...  Like ''Seller'' said above, just know the rules and follow them...

Ina,
From what I understand, you can't post links to your eBay listing, but you can certainly advertise your item on both sites and mention the eBay listing, maybe even your eBay ID.  But if you can sell it off-eBay and cut your costs, why bother redirecting them?

@Everyone...
If you want your government to stick their nose in and control CL, then that's a sure vote for the gov't to control your life as well.  Freedom is simply freedom.  If you want yours, let others have it too.  Crime happens, people get taken advantage of... it's just the nature of things.  The fewer laws there are, the smarter our population will get about protecting themselves.  Seriously, if it weren't for all these dang laws then maybe there wouldn't be so many people dumb enough to take a money order for more than the sale price from someone in Africa.  Maybe that statement is a strech.  AuctionBytes is certainly not the place for my rant, though.  Apologies.  ;)

Also, regarding CL...
I have stopped posting an email address for contact on CL because I get so many spam/scam emails.  Would be nice if there was a built-in emailing thing on CL like there is on Kijiji.  Instead I just post my phone number, only.  And not my home number!  Too easy for people to get your home address that way.
BTW... just for kicks, when I get scam emails from people on other continents who want to overpay with M.O. and want a little cash back, I give them this name & address...
Joe Biden
1600 Pennsylvania Avenue NW
Washington, DC 20500

When they agree to send the M.O. to that address, you KNOW they're not from around here...

Are eBay Sellers Welcome on Craigslist?   Are eBay Sellers Welcome on Craigslist?

by: Mere

Tue May 12 00:33:07 2009

Sure you can make money on your local CL. Just use some common sense and proper english.

Post your item under the correct category, add a picture, list your price ( price higher if you will haggle or have your price noted as firm) and give some contact info, either thru CL's email or your phone number. Never put your address online in any post.

I find you don't waste any time if you always state in your post that 1st one who shows up with money in hand gets the item.

To my knowledge, the only posts that cost are real estate.

For a free site that has a huge following, you can definitely make a good income if you sell what people are looking for and never compare the price of your item to what it is on some ebay auction.

Also, check out the Wanted section. I make many sales from that category and usually get a good price.

Are eBay Sellers Welcome on Craigslist?   Are eBay Sellers Welcome on Craigslist?

by: mike

Tue May 12 08:30:58 2009

@jeff - Please grab your dictionary (if you don't have one, go out and buy one), and look up the following 3 words: "there" "their" & "they're", then try to memorize the difference.

Are eBay Sellers Welcome on Craigslist?   Are eBay Sellers Welcome on Craigslist?

by: EbaySux

Tue May 12 08:53:43 2009

Ebay sellers might find that they would have better luck on CL if they quit acting like Ebay sellers. Stop thinking of yourselves as Ebay sellers and start thinking like a professional retail business. Promote your items for sale and YOURSELF, not your Ebay listings.

As soon as someone puts "Thanks for looking!" in their listing, I know they are Ebay "trained" and I pass them by. I don't want to read that you have 1000 positive feedbacks on Ebay. CL is NOT Ebay and I don't care about your feedback.

Look at some successful retail websites. Do you see them saying "Thanks for looking" or any other typical, less-than-businesslike Ebay phrasing? For that matter, do you see frilly, flowery, artsy-f*rtsy templates on those sites? No? Of course not. Those are professional retail sites... not Ebay.

CL listings get flagged because Ebay sellers point to Ebay or their Ebay-inspired website/blog. CL users are looking for local bargains and they have nothing against getting a bargain from you if you just push your individual item not Ebay.

Get your own website. Get a professional-looking logo, and do away with the froufrou templates. Use that logo to brand yourself instead of pink roses framing your products. Then use CL to supplement your website sales.

Don't spam CL with multiple duplicate listings. Keep those arrows pointing to Ebay out of your listings. Once you get a buyer, THEN you can let them know you have like items on your website.

Just use some common sense. CL isn't Ebay. Stop acting like it is or should be.


Are eBay Sellers Welcome on Craigslist?   Are eBay Sellers Welcome on Craigslist?

by: Jackson

Tue May 12 11:01:52 2009

It took a monumental and sustained effort by EBay to drive me away. I was more than willing to pay reasonable fees and take the time to pack and ship items, rather than deal with face-to-face transactions with haggling and time-wasters from Craigslist. I planned to be an EBay "lifer". But now, Craigslist is my first choice.

If EBay had not destroyed the feedback system and shoved PayPal down our throats, I would have probably put up with the fee increases, and would have been too committed to EBay to try CL.

I should say that I've never used CL to drive eyeballs to EBay, and ALWAYS flag sellers who do so.

As another post pointed out, CL is NOT EBay; if anything, it's the anti-EBay (both administration and users). In a way, it's a reminder of what EBay could be if they had not totally sold out to Wall Street and turned "sellers" into "expendable cheap labor to be used and abused".

Are eBay Sellers Welcome on Craigslist?   Are eBay Sellers Welcome on Craigslist?

by: o.c.d.collectibles

Tue May 12 12:21:58 2009

Just remember. Ebay owns a small percentage of Craigslist, much to everyone's dismay.(Is it 24% or 25%? I forgot)
Nevertheless, if ebay reaps even one cent from a listing, I would not even consider contributing another. They make enough off of their own sites and their ignorant "sheep" sellers.

It's bad enough getting stuck using Paypal, but the buyers mostly have it, so until the buyers change, us sellers are stuck with it, even on other sites..

Are eBay Sellers Welcome on Craigslist?   Are eBay Sellers Welcome on Craigslist?

by: Kirsten

Tue May 12 19:17:38 2009

Social classifieds sites, such as Facebook Marketplace and MySpace Classifieds allow buyers to build an identity/presence. The inherent structure of a social network encourages your  network to then share your listing(s). In addition, because personal profiles are attached to each listing, users know more about who they are buying from, selling to or trading with.

Are eBay Sellers Welcome on Craigslist?   Are eBay Sellers Welcome on Craigslist?

This user has validated their user name. by: Ming the Merciless

Tue May 12 23:01:19 2009

Ebay acquired 24% of Craig's List in order to destroy it and merge the remains with Kijiii.

These are how B school and Bain trained minds work.

Ebay acquires competition in order to destroy it.

Ebay is an anti competitive monopoly that will do WHATEVER IS NECESSARY to remain this way.

Sleep with fishes, ebafia.

Are eBay Sellers Welcome on Craigslist?   Are eBay Sellers Welcome on Craigslist?

by: JP

Wed May 13 06:45:24 2009

I have always had good luck using craigslist. Much much better than ebay ever was, in every way possible too.
As for whether anyone is "welcome"? Why wouldn't they be, providing they operate within the rules?

For those of you whom wish to use craigslist for buying here are a couple handy searching tools:

clgenie.com
searchtempest.com

Again, you will find that buying in CL is much better than buying on ebay, for instance you can meet the seller, see/test the item etc.

ebay is soooo over with. haha.

Are eBay Sellers Welcome on Craigslist?   Are eBay Sellers Welcome on Craigslist?

by: Foothill Web Design

Thu May 14 13:15:11 2009

Thanks for this interesting report. I recently sold some tickets on CL. Overall it was a simple transaction. Lots of people selling tix at or below face value, others posting spam for ticket services. Encouraging payment by cash puts CL vs. Paypal. My sense is eBay will either figure how to make a buck off CL or else try to shut it down. CL needs to get back to basics; it's a local classifieds site.

Are eBay Sellers Welcome on Craigslist?   Are eBay Sellers Welcome on Craigslist?

by: Ebay No More

Mon May 18 09:54:35 2009

I don't buy on Ebay anymore but I do on Craigslist. I live in a city with a very active CL community and commercial sellers gets flagged/removed promptly. We see more problems with Ecrater sellers spamming the site than we do Ebay sellers. Most Ebay listings seen on CL are usually Ebay affiliates spamming Craigslist and those get reported directly to Ebay's affiliate program for Ebay to deal with.

Maybe sellers don't know but there is a section on Craigslist for commercial sellers to list their business free. I think they can have up to five free listings in that area. This is the place for your commercial listings NOT in the section where locals post.

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