How to Make Money on Craigslist

Would you like to make money on Craigslist? It’s not difficult and you can begin today. I’ve been buying and selling goods online for almost 10 years. Over the years, I’ve learned what to do and how to do it on Craigslist.

Why Craigslist?

Craigslist is just one option when looking to buy or sell online. Ebay is a popular choice, as is Amazon. The thing that sets Craigslist apart is the fact that they charge you nothing! No fees to buy or sell. Ebay, for example, keeps raising fees and it’s almost impossible to make a profit flipping items anymore.

It’s also easy and convenient. You search for items by city. After you find what you’re looking for, an email or phone call allows you to see what you’re getting yourself into.

Know Your Product

If you are shopping for ANYTHING online, then do some research before you run out and click buy. This is a principle that goes far beyond Craigslist. Before you ever look to purchase, put in the time to research prices, quality, and customer feedback. This sounds easy, but it’s the main component of  a successful Craigslist deal.

Craigslist is an inefficient market. Sometimes even wildly inefficient. Settle down economics buffs, I’m not talking in the traditional sense. I mean that many folks on Craigslist don’t have a clue what their product is worth. I see people trying to sell 2-year old used TV’s for $200 more than Walmart charges. When I see that, it takes every bit of self restraint to stop from emailing them and showing them the error in their ways.

A few moments after my initial outrage (ask my wife), I usually get a good chuckle and a warm fuzzy feeling. Why you ask?

Because that is the essence of Craigslist – subjective pricing! It’s what allows me to buy low – way, way low, and sell high.

Learn How to Negotiate

The other reason I do so well on Craigslist is my unwavering and always improving ability to negotiate! I’ll let you in on a little secret here – There are no firm prices on Craigslist, unless I’m selling!

When I go to buy, I never give the seller full asking price. This is usually due to playing hard ball, which makes many folks uncomfortable.

Set aside your feelings when you are negotiating on Craigslist. The worst thing that can possibly happen is rejection. But I’ve found that rejection can be minimized with a couple of added tips –

  1. Always have cash to buy. Cash talks.
  2. Be Patient – Sometimes it’s beneficial to wait a few days after first spotting an item to contact the seller. The exception to this rule is if it’s already at a rock bottom price. This gives you more negotiating power and allows you to mention the items inability to sell at the initial price point.
  3. Be friendly. Some folks will sell lower if you are friendly upon first contact. No joke

Restore and sell

This is a great option if you’re wondering how to make money on Craigslist. Just follow these simple steps

  1. Look for furniture or appliances at garage sales, flea markets, or on Craigslist.
  2. Dirty stuff is often discounted, as are damaged goods. These are the good you want.
  3. Use your skills to fix the item and make it look like new.
  4. Sell at a much higher price.

craigslistHere is a solid wood table we just reconditioned. It was ugly and mismatched with blue paint and scuffed legs. We just sanded it and repainted it. We bought the table for $12 at a garage sale. I’m going to list it for $100 this week on Craigslist.

Flipping on Craigslist

I’ve made thousands of dollars by simply buying items on Craigslist, then turning around and reselling them for a higher price. This works for almost any category of item, but you have to know the value of whatever you want to flip. If you’re an expert in train sets, then flip train sets. If it’s cars, then flip cars. But if you know a lot about cars, don’t start buying train sets.

You can go beyond the simple flip, though. Sometimes it pays to shop around. I’ve bought sale items on Amazon and immediately listed them on Craigslist for a 100% profit. This is where it pays to shop around for big sales.

I’ve made a fair amount of money in electronics. I’ve bought and sold dozens of video game consoles, HDMI cables, and computer peripherals.

I’ve made even more flipping cars and motorcycles. That’s probably another post, but there is a lot of money in used motor vehicles.

If you have room to store inventory, look for off season purchases. Air conditioners, heaters, motorcycles, hunting season goods, sporting goods, and many more are seasonal items. They can be found during the off-season at a fraction of the price that they will fetch during peak buying season! Take advantage of the cycle!

Selling Techniques

Make sure to implement a few simple tips when you go to sell your item on Craigslist.

  • Title – Make it attention grabbing and descriptive. “Like New” or “Antique” are big hits. Get creative here but don’t make it too long. Make sure to avoid pissing folks off with ALL CAPITAL letters or  9 exclamation points!!!!
  • Description – When you list an item on Craigslist, make sure to write a positive and promotional description which  addresses all of the questions you would have if you were looking to buy. Doing so will generate leads and eventual sales. Don’t be misleading, but don’t list every tiny flaw in the initial description.
  • Pictures – Make sure to take clear and inviting photos. People want to see the item in lots of light, from several angles. This is one of the easiest ways to make a sale!

Final Thoughts

Get started today. It’s easy to sign up and list your items, and you can begin by selling the junk you don’t use! After you get a little experience, move into flipping or another money making avenue!

That’s how to make money on Craigslist. Did I miss anything?

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