The Internet has transformed the real estate industry in recent years. This transformation hasn’t only benefited homebuyers, but sales agents and brokers, too. Among all of the new websites and mobile apps, Craigslist was one of the first to hit the digital scene. A free, international classified listing site with over 50 billion page views per month and over 100 million classifieds posted per month, Craigslist real estate listings serves to be a useful resource for real estate professionals if it’s used effectively and safely.
Why You Should be Using Craigslist
If the above statistics weren’t enough to convince you, here are a few more to prove how valuable Craigslist can be for real estate professionals:
- Craigslist is the 7th highest traffic site in America and the 33rd most visited site in the world.
- Craigslist is still the #1 source of leads in the apartment industry and one of the most important tools in your marketing toolbox.
- Craigslist.org gets an estimated 10 million unique visitors per day.
- Craigslist Free used by 17% of smartphone property searches.
- Craigslist is the third largest marketplace on the Internet.
- More than 20 million people use Craigslist every month.
The enormous size and volume of Craigslist is astonishing. Real estate professionals can use the site to post listings for sellers and inquire about posts on behalf of buyers. Craigslist becomes a marketing channel for real estate professionals seeking to target specific buyers, as selling agents can place ads that serve niche audiences. Due to its geo-based structure, the site makes targeting sellers and buyers by location effective for real estate professionals.
Tips for using Craigslist in Real Estate
Leads won’t magically appear after posting an ad on Craigslist if it isn’t thought through. There are several steps you can take to make sure your ad will be successful.
1. Craigslist Ad Creation
- Have an appealing title
- Include details that will be attractive to most buyers
- Include a phone number, link and a call to action in every ad
2. Improve your Visibility on Craigslist
- Renew your ad
- Post different ads for the same property
3. Optimize your SEO on Craigslist
- Use keywords in your ads (i.e. property types, locations, amenities, etc.)
- Provide local details in your ads
Avoiding Craigslist Scams
While Craigslist does provide a free marketing tool for real estate professionals to generate leads and sales, be wary of scams. These scams cause hardships for both sellers and agents and could potentially cost stakeholders a lot of money. Avoiding these scams is crucial to your reputation as a real estate professional, as being a victim can damage your image and affect your income. Scammers that use Craigslist to conduct fraud often use common tactics to do so. Here are a few typical characteristics of a Craigslist scam:
- Significantly low price compared to local rates.
- Phone number doesn’t match the agency number, even for posts that list an address which matches the agency’s address.
- The request to use an escrow service, Western Union, Moneygram, or other service that facilitates transactions remotely.
Ready to learn more about how Craigslist Marketing can help grow your real estate business? Enroll in Craigslist Marketing: How to Effectively Use Craigslist and Avoid Scams
Sources: http://smallbusiness.chron.com/times-posting-craigslist-26647.html, http://www.weblisters.com/blog/, http://www.entrepreneur.com/article/171514, http://realestateagentu.com/used-real-estate-apps-iphone-android/, http://www.l2l2l.com/newsletterdetail.aspx?newsid=103