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Craigslist Reviews | Better Business Bureau® Profile 2021

Craigslist

Craigslist review with pricing, posting instructions, key information, and FAQs.

Craigslist is one of the world’s most popular job boards, with millions of jobs posted each year across hundreds of different cities. It is most popular in the United States and Canada and leans toward blue-collar and less senior office roles.

The U.S.-based platform launched its web-based service in 1996 and quickly expanded beyond national borders, covering 70 countries and more than 700 cities by 2012. While Craigslist still allows for free postings in some countries, it does not feature a free posting option in the U.S., with pricing varying by location.

Review:

Craigslist is a popular online classified advertisement site that attracts large volumes of traffic. The platform features city and region-specific sites where users can post a range of ads, including job listings, to reach a local audience. While Craigslist does not offer free postings in the U.S., its pricing is very competitive.

Despite many negative reviews, the site remains one of the most popular online classifieds platforms and is great for advertising local and freelance jobs. However, if you’re looking to fill positions that require specialized skills and qualifications, dedicated career platforms like LinkedIn and Indeed are better options.

Highlights:

  • The site is easy to use.
  • The platform offers competitive pricing and is more affordable than competitors like Monster.
  • Craigslist is great for advertising blue-collar jobs.
  • Users can target audiences by location.
  • The platform is well-known and receives large volumes of website traffic in the U.S.
  • It is free to search resumes.

Shortcomings:

  • There is no free posting option in the U.S.
  • The platform is not suited for posting executive-level jobs. For this, users should rather look to competing platforms like LinkedIn.
  • Craigslist is not BBB accredited.
  • In reviews, several U.S. users report coming across suspicious posts and receiving dubious or nonserious responses to ads posted on the platform.

Reputation:

Craigslist is not accredited by the Better Business Bureau and has been given an F rating. Most of the reviews on the BBB website are negative, giving it an average customer rating of 1.17 out of five stars. Themes dominating the negative reviews include complaints about suspicious user activity and dissatisfaction with customer support.

These negative points are echoed by reviewers on Trustpilot and Sitejabber, where Craigslist has a rating of 1.4 and 3.5 out of 5 stars, respectively. While Quora users also report coming across nonserious and suspicious user activity on Craigslist, the site is still regarded as a popular and easy-to-use platform for local classifieds.

How Craigslist Works

By: Jonathan Strickland

The craigslist storefront in San FranciscoJUSTIN SULLIVAN/GETTY IMAGES

Craigslist.org, originally a San Francisco community electronic newsletter, is now one of the most visited English language Web sites, with local classifieds for more than 450 cities worldwide. The site’s main function is to host classified ads that cover practically every category you can think of, including housing, job postings, items for sale, services and personals. There’s also a forums section that allows users to discuss topics on everything from gardening to the Linuxoperating system.

Craigslist’s founder Craig Newmark and CEO Jim Buckmaster aim to provide users with a helpful, noncommercial way to connect with other people in their communities [source: New York Times]. Posting for most classifieds categories on craigslist is free, and it’s also free to browse and respond to ads. The Web site doesn’t have any flashy animation or graphics — its value comes from its utilitarian design and the contributions of its users.

If all you want to do is browse the site, you can just visit craigslist.org and click away. The site has a range of broad categories, and each category has several subcategories, making it easy to navigate to the appropriate section quickly. For example, the “for sale” category features subcategories like computer, books, electronics, sporting, motorcycles and collectibles, among others.

Most ads include the member’s e-mail address. Craigslist offers a function that masks e-mail so that members don’t have to worry about their address being openly available. All transactions are between the person who posted the ad and the person responding to it. Craigslist’s employees don’t get involved in any transactions or discussions unless someone reports a problem.

If you want to participate in forum discussions or post your own classifieds, you need to create a craigslist account. The only thing you need to become a member is a valid e-mail address. The signup process is short and painless — after entering your e-mail and filling in a verification word (which helps prevent programs called bots from creating accounts to post ads automatically), you’ll receive an e-mail that includes a link you’ll need to click on to verify your account and log in. Once you’ve done that, you’ve officially joined the craigslist community.

Craigslist users act like the site’s watchdogs by monitoring the content that gets posted. Users flag posts to draw attention to those that are particularly interesting and those that detract from the site. The tags that can be applied to posts are best of craigslist (a funny or effective post), miscategorized (a post placed in the wrong section of the site), spam/overpost (a generic post or one that has been posted multiple times) and prohibited (a post that directly violates the site’s terms of use).

In this article, we’ll look at craigslist’s impact on the Internet, the corporate structure of the company and some of the controversies involving the Web site.

In the next section, we’ll learn about craigslist’s presence on the Web.

Avoiding Scams

Deal locally, face-to-face —follow this one rule and avoid 99% of scam attempts.

  • Do not provide payment to anyone you have not met in person.
  • Beware offers involving shipping – deal with locals you can meet in person.
  • Never wire funds (e.g. Western Union) – anyone who asks you to is a scammer.
  • Don’t accept cashier/certified checks or money orders – banks cash fakes, then hold you responsible.
  • Transactions are between users only, no third party provides a “guarantee”.
  • Never give out financial info (bank account, social security, paypal account, etc).
  • Do not rent or purchase sight-unseen—that amazing “deal” may not exist.
  • Refuse background/credit checks until you have met landlord/employer in person.
  • “craigslist voicemails” – Any message asking you to access or check “craigslist voicemails” or “craigslist voice messages” is fraudulent – no such service exists.

Recognizing scams

Most scams attempts involve one or more of the following:

  • Email or text from someone that is not local to your area.
  • Vague initial inquiry, e.g. asking about “the item.” Poor grammar/spelling.
  • Western Union, Money Gram, cashier check, money order, Paypal, Zelle, shipping, escrow service, or a “guarantee.”
  • Inability or refusal to meet face-to-face to complete the transaction.

Examples of Scams

1. Someone claims your transaction is guaranteed, that a buyer/seller is officially certified, OR that a third party of any kind will handle or provide protection for a payment:

  • These claims are fraudulent, as transactions are between users only.
  • The scammer will often send an official looking (but fake) email that appears to come from craigslist or another third party, offering a guarantee, certifying a seller, or pretending to handle payments.

2. Distant person offers a genuine-looking (but fake) cashier’s check:

  • You receive an email or text (examples below) offering to buy your item, pay for your services in advance, or rent your apartment, sight unseen and without meeting you in person.
  • A cashier’s check is offered for your sale item as a deposit for an apartment or for your services.
  • Value of cashier’s check often far exceeds your item—scammer offers to “trust” you, and asks you to wire the balance via money transfer service.
  • Banks will cash fake checks AND THEN HOLD YOU RESPONSIBLE WHEN THE CHECK FAILS TO CLEAR, sometimes including criminal prosecution.
  • Scams often pretend to involve a 3rd party (shipping agent, business associate, etc.).

3. Someone requests wire service payment via Western Union or MoneyGram:

  • Deal often seems too good to be true, price is too low, or rent is below market, etc.
  • Scam “bait” items include apartments, laptops, TVs, cell phones, tickets, other high value items.
  • Scammer may (falsely) claim a confirmation code from you is needed before he can withdraw your money.
  • Common countries currently include: Nigeria, Romania, UK, Netherlands—but could be anywhere.
  • Rental may be local, but owner is “travelling” or “relocating” and needs you to wire money abroad.
  • Scammer may pretend to be unable to speak by phone (scammers prefer to operate by text/email).

4. Distant person offers to send you a cashier’s check or money order and then have you wire money:

  • This is ALWAYS a scam in our experience—the cashier’s check is FAKE.
  • Sometimes accompanies an offer of merchandise, sometimes not.
  • Scammer often asks for your name, address, etc. for printing on the fake check.
  • Deal often seems too good to be true.

5. Distant seller suggests use of an online escrow service:

  • Most online escrow sites are FRAUDULENT and operated by scammers.
  • For more info, do a google search on “fake escrow” or “escrow fraud.”

6. Distant seller asks for a partial payment upfront, after which they will ship goods:

  • He says he trusts you with the partial payment.
  • He may say he has already shipped the goods.
  • Deal often sounds too good to be true.

7. Foreign company offers you a job receiving payments from customers, then wiring funds:

  • Foreign company may claim it is unable to receive payments from its customers directly.
  • You are typically offered a percentage of payments received.
  • This kind of “position” may be posted as a job, or offered to you via email.

Actual scam emails sent to craigslist users:

Hi,I am selling this car because my platoon has been sent back to Afganistan and don’t want it get old in my backyard. The price is low because I need to sell it before November 16th. It has no damage, no scratches or dents, no hidden defects. It is in immaculate condition, meticulously maintained and hasn’t been involved in any accident…I do have the title , clear, under my name. The Denali has 35,000 miles VIN# 1GKEK63U16J138428 .It is still available for sale if interested, price as stated in the ad $4,300. The car is in Baltimore, MD, in case it gets sold I will take care of shipping. Let me know if you are interested, email back.Regards!!! 


 First of all I want to thank you for your interest for my car. I sell it at this price($2,980.00 ) because I have been divorced recently. Now the car is in my property and as a woman i don’t need it. This car is in excellent working conditions, no scratches, flaws or any kind of damage, slightly used in 100% working and looking conditions and comes with a clear title.

From the beginning you have to know that for the payment I request only secure pay, I prefer the payment to be done using eBay services. We will use a safe payment method because I am affiliated at eBay and I have a purchase protection account for $20,000.00 The final price that I want for this car is $2,980.00 including shipping and handling.

If you are interested in buying it please provide me your full name and address so I can initiate the deal through eBay.

I will wait your answer very soon.


Hello,

I am looking for caring and honest person to watch my 3 years old daughter while I work, during our stay in the state and a friend introduced craiglist.com to me, I was searching on Childcare Babysitter, when your Ad post pumped up as a Childcare and Babysitter, am interested in your service as my babysitter/Childcare.. My Little daughters is (Mellina ) , I would like you to watch over her while i am at work in your Location , I reside in United Kingdom,I will be coming to the States in about two weeks time , Cos I just got a contract with Boss Perfume fashion industry down there, I work as a model and the contract will last for a month, the duration of our service wil be from 10am to 5pm, monday thru friday, I would like to know if she will be taken care of in your childcare centre/Home, or the hotel room where i would be lodging, It’s Okay by me, any of this ways.

My little daughter (Mellina ) is 3 years old, I will be waiting patiently for your email indicating the cost of everything,I mean the price for your service,how long you will be available to take care of her,how much u charge per week. she is just three years old as i have said earlier and i will be glad to update you and make the payment in advance to show you how serious i am. So please get back to me as soon as you can if you will be able to handle her and take very good care of her for me.

Email me back
Your’s faithfully

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