In Part 1, How To Use ImageShack Photo Hosting for Craigslist Ads, I described what photo hosting was all about and why you want to avoid use of Craigslist's own tools for adding photos to your product listings. I discussed the virtues of ImageShack's free hosting service and its other uses, and explained that the procedures are easy to follow. In Part 2, How To Enhance and Resize Photos for Craigslist, I provided the rationale and then the steps to follow to host your photos at ImageShack. That's where they are, right? Now it's time to place them in your Craigslist ad. You are just several easy steps away from WOW.
Bring your browser on screen and go to Craigslist. In most cases, Craigslist will set up automatically for your region.
- Select your state or city from the list on the right side of the page.
- Look over the categories and pick the right one. In our case, it's "for sale" and "computer". Click "computer".
- Pick the right location. At the top of the page, select your geographical area from the choices offered.
- Check out other listings for examples. Reviews some of the listings to get a flavor and feel for how others list their products. It won't take long to come up with useful ideas and some pricing. Jot them down.
At this point, you can maximize Notepad and use it to capture your "copy" -- the text you want in your ad. Put your cursor in front of the first item on the page (the first code segment you pasted in) and begin typing. For our example, you might enter the following headline and description:
Surplus Home Networking Gear
I installed wireless so the following stuff has to go. Buy one or all. The price for all is $75. My individual prices are:
LinkSys Router $35
Netgear Hub-4 port $20
NetgearHub-8 port $30
Now it’s time to list. Shrink or minimize Notepad, return to the Craigslist home page and do the following:
- Click "post to classifieds" near the top left.
- In our case, select "for sale".
- Click "computers&tech".
- Click your region if several are offered.
- Click your town if several are offered. The input form should now be on screen.
- Insert the posting title from Notepad, and your price.
- Copy product description text. Highlight the balance of the text in Notepad -- your writeup plus the code for the photos, and copy it (CTRL-C).
- Paste this text. Place the cursor in Craigslist's Product Description window and press CTRL-V to paste the description and photo code.
- Add all other necessary information. Position your cursor at the end of the pasted content and press Enter. Then type in any shipping information and contact information. I suggest you provide a phone number so buyers can reach you. Otherwise, buyers can only reply via e-mail to an anonymous address. I also usually include my first name.
- Enter your e-mail address in the window. Make sure it's correct.
- Don't "Add/Edit images" unless you have some small ones you'd like to see in the ad.
- Click continue and follow on-screen instructions to finish your ad. You should see a preview containing your very large photos (WOW!). You can go back and edit copy if needed.
- Type in the security code, click "Continue" and you are done. Craigslist will send you an e-mail with a link to your ad. Be sure to check it for errors. Now it's time to wait for buyers.
I admit it. These instructions sound daunting, but they are not hard to master. By the time you've listed your third item, you'll be an expert. Happy selling!