Should You Post Your Cars on Craigslist

When I first decided to tackle this topic I thought it would be easy.  Now that I’m here it’s proving to be more difficult.

I wish I knew how to quit youYou see, Craigslist, is its own beast.  Many, including myself, have a strong love/hate relationship with craigslist.  Since December 3rd, 2013 craigslist started charging $5 per ad posted to the “Cars and Trucks By Dealer” category.  This was done, for what we can only assume was, to cut down on spam and overposting by dealers.  Since that change many dealers stopped posting.  What once was free and a no-brainer now needed to be reevaluated as to whether or not it was worth it.

As you evaluate your decision to post or not to post I have here my arguments for and against posting your cars on craigslist.

Why you should NOT post ads on Craigslist

  1. No time:  Craigslist is not like or  It requires constant attention.  If you don’t think you can block off some time every week for craigslist you probably shouldn’t advertise there.
  2. Don't post on craigslist if you have the wrong inventoryNo clue:  If you’re still trying to figure out what this list of Craig’s is you probably won’t invest the time and money it takes to make it a success.  I could be wrong on this, however, you might just need more exposure to it.
  3. No success:  Maybe you’ve tried craigslist already.  Maybe you just aren’t getting the leads and sales you were expecting.  It could simply be your market (city) doesn’t use craigslist.  Stop wasting your money and try something else.
  4. Your inventory is wrong for it:  Early 2000 models, cash cars, and mid-range specialty cars like convertibles and sports cars do really well on craigslist.

Why you SHOULD post ads on Craigslist

  1. It works!  Craigslist is the 10th most popular site in America.  People go there to find stuff to buy and just because it’s $5 to post doesn’t mean the shopper went away.
  2. Small investment up front:  Some inventory sites charge over $700 per month for a 25 car trial on their site.  You just spent thousands on cars and a dealership to get your doors open.  You might not have $700 to ‘test’ with.  You could post 10 of your cars on craigslist for 30 days for $50.  See how it goes.  That’s an investment worth making.
  3. craigslist-imageYou have a posting tool:  Many companies, including ours, have a posting tool for craigslist.  This can save you valuable time when it comes to getting your ads posted.  Many, including ours, have the tool already included in their product at no additional charge.
  4. You sell cash cars:  By cash car I mean under $10k, probably early 2000s, around 100k miles.  This market is shopping on craigslist.
  5. You have a way with words:  While every other site focuses on multimedia craigslist sticks with generic fonts and little to no design.  This paves the way for the creative writer who can really bring the ad to life through their vehicle description and features list.  If that’s you, take advantage of this!


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Owner / Web Designer for SEO Car Websites | I have a passion for marketing and websites. Any bit of knowledge I have on these subjects as it relates to car dealers and computers I'll be sure to share!

  • John Kugelfischer

    You fucking dealers who cheat craigslist out of $5………………by posting as a private seller…………what makes you think we’ll buy from you? If you LIE about your status in ORDER to save $5 by cheating craigslist out of its ad fee, what will you NOT lie about to sell me that ten thousand dollar car ?