I want to touch on the importance of using Online Classifieds sites like Craigslist to post property listings and market for new potential business. I’ll also show you how toeffectively create your ads and property listings so you receive the maximum desired results.
Using sites like Craiglist, Backpage, Oodle and Kijiji is an extremely important part of your marketing. The more places you consistently run ads for your properties, the more of a chance you have of getting people to see your ads. Think of it the same way you would be looking to drive traffic offline. When putting up FSBO signs, you want signs all over town and in the busy sections of town where you know the most people will see them. Bandit signs, pointer signs, signs in front of the house and if you’re running and open house you may even use a dancing sign holder on the busy intersecting streets. Heck, you might even still be using the newspaper in your area.
These same principles apply online. There are hundreds of places for you to place classified ads and the best part is; many of them are absolutely free or offer a free listing of some sort.
The most popular and highly trafficked of these sites is none-other than the mighty “List”. Craigslist is the 10th most popular site in the United States and the 36th most popular site in the World. Now, that doesn’t necessarily mean it’s that popular in your specific area but chances are, it’s still one of your better options to list your properties and once again, it’s absolutely free!
Writing an effective ad For Craigslist-
Craigslist has become increasingly flooded with Real Estate listings over the years, so making your ad stand out from the page is extremely important. I do this by adding symbols and punctuation to my headline and using the full allotment of characters CL allows. You can see an example of what I mean here. It should be fairly easy to see which ad is mine
Always be sure to have website link and phone# in the heading of the ad. The 1st thing people should see is the option to find out more information from you if they want. If you’re advertising a specific property, be sure to put the direct link to that property page within your site.
Adding pictures is extremely important because people want to see what the house looks like and many times, people will skip over ads that don’t have a picture attached to them. Craigslist even has a feature where you can only view ads that have pictures attached to them.
Add Video link to the ad. You can even put “Video” in the title. Example: VIDEO Available!!- NEED to SELL this Home within 3 Weeks.
Use Bullet Points if you have tons of details you want to convey in your ad. Just writing out long paragraphs detailing the property will lose the attention of your reader.
When you are advertising you properties with any sort of terms, be sure to post them in the Homes for Sale sections as well as Homes for Rent. Most of the folks who have some money to put down on a home of their own but might be credit challenged or unable to qualify for a conventional loan for any number of reasons, will be looking for a place to rent. That is a perfect opportunity for you give them the chance to become a homeowner!
You can also market for potential sellers on Craigslist as well. They, along with the other classified sites above, all have a Real Estate Wanted section. This is the perfect place to run your “I Buy Houses” ads. You can even get fancy and create nice graphic ads by hiring someone to design it for you. I’ve used www.99designs.com to create my ads in the past but you can shop around.
A couple of cool sites that will generate a nice looking Craiglist ad for you without having to know any HTML code would be:
- www.postlets.com (we will discuss this more on a later post)
According to a study by Josh Schoenly of ReTechulous.com people visit Craigslist in the morning between 8:30 a.m. and 9 a.m., just before they go to work. They also visit Craigslist around lunchtime. Nighttime visits to Craigslist peak at different times depending upon the season. In the wintertime, it’s usually after dinner, from 7 to 7:30 p.m. In the summertime, it’s more likely to be later, usually between 9 and 10 p.m.
So what does this mean for you? Well having this knowledge allows you the luxury of strategically posting your ads at peak times several times per WEEK, instead of constantly updating your ads several times per DAY.
In the next post I want to discuss some of the other Free Classified sites that are out there for us to exploit as well as some really cool property syndication sites that will allow you to distribute your listings to dozens of sites at once. Stay tuned…