that most of the postings on Craigslist are free makes
advertising about as affordable as it can get. At its inception
Craigslist was a non-profit service. This changed in 1999 when they
made the switch to being for profit. Craigslist's overhead is
covered with the small fee it charges for employment postings made
in seven U.S. cities (San Diego, Boston, Seattle, Washington D.C., New
York City, Los Angeles, and San Francisco). A fee is also charged for
some real estate in
With upwards of 450 sites, the overwhelming
majority of people
can, amazingly, post for free. Looking at it financially it makes a
lot of sense to post ads on Craigslist. Even though it's free to
post ads on Craigslist, you need to be careful that you make
postings wisely. While there may be no apparent financial loss
improper posting can be a concern. There is no real profit
potential if you misuse time and other resources.
How Can Craigslist Be Free?
Craig Newmark, the 'Craig' in Craigslist, had
advertisers to place banner ads on the site as far back as
1997. Even though this could have been profitable for him,
Craig chose to keep the site noncommercial. Eventually Craigslist
switched to being for profit, yet commercialization has been kept
in check. This may be due to the following factors:
Although all of the 450+ sites have 'craigslist'
in the address,
each has its own distinct community. There isn't the feel of a
corporate dictator telling those who post what to do. Craigslist is
firmly planted in everyday things. It's laid out in an uncluttered
easy to use format. Allowing people from many backgrounds to
discuss, share or meet.
Craigslist Or Affiliate
Another way to sell is with affiliate marketing.
often find this to be cost effective and advantageous. The main
appeal to business owners is that their affiliates only get paid
when they produce the desired result - income, website traffic,
customer leads, registration or filling out a form are some
examples of desired results.
The many advantages of affiliate marketing can
make it a good
choice. Still, there are a couple of reasons why Craigslist may be
a better option. The two main reasons are the (usually) free
posting and the large amount of traffic the Craigslist community
gets. Again, when done right this will save time and money.
There are, however, certain instances when free
Craigslist isn't the best choice for your marketing campaign. If
your offer doesn't fit into the appropriate category on Craigslist
for example. When that happens posting on Craigslist probably won't
be worth the effort. The ad may not cost you any money, but chances
are that it will not get the full attention of your target buyers.
Obviously this would be a waste of time and resources.
The other instance where Craigslist is likely not
option for advertising is in a category saturated with ads from
your competitors. The reason this is not ideal is that you will
have to expend more time and resources to overcome your potential
customer's loyalty to a competitor. It may make more sense to
purchase ads in a less saturated market.