Craigslist Rules For Posting Ads

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Top 5 Rules to Keep Your Craigslist Ad from Getting Ghosted …

Allen Cook
Sr. Vice President of Sales at
Published Nov 4, 2014
(What we learned from 321, 021 Craigslist ads)
If your properties regularly advertise their vacancies on Craigslist, they have likely experienced having their postings ghosted or flagged. Having a post ghosted or flagged means that either a user of the site has clicked the ‘prohibited’ flag at the top of your post or that the Craigslist bots have removed your post due to exceeding a threshold in one of their algorithms. These activities are in place as an attempt to rein in the scammers and spammers on Craigslist, but oftentimes legitimate businesses get caught in the web.
Here are a few simple rules to follow when posting to avoid user flagging and/or algorithmic ghosting, presented in order of severity:
1) Don’t post in more than one city from the same email/account
Why? Because Craigslist promotes local connections and a common practice of spammers is posting in multiple cities from a single central location.
What to do. If your email account in Craigslist is and you post in Atlanta, then you should only ever post in Atlanta. Avoid posting in any other city with that same email account. If you must post in another city, use a different email account like
2) Don’t post identical content
Why? Having ads with identical content on Craigslist can get those ads ghosted or flagged because Craigslist forbids posting the same thing more than once.
What to do. Vary your ad content with each post. Alter the titles, the order of the images uploaded, and the body copy every time you post an ad.
3) Don’t post back-to-back ads
Why? A craigslist search results page that contains many ads with similar content and the same contact information looks “spammy. ” Technically, Craigslist even forbids having two ads in the same category, even if you are legitimately selling two different things.
What to do. Allow some time to pass between ad postings. Exactly how much time depends on the individual market. Each market has varying volumes of ad postings. With very active markets, you need only wait a half hour to an hour between postings, other less active markets, you will need to limit your postings to one or two per day. The idea is to let other ads come onto the site as a buffer between your ads.
4) Don’t use “spammy” words
Why? Craigslist is on the lookout for words and phrases routinely used by scammers and spammers. Once again, legitimate businesses can get caught in this search.
What to do. Avoid using words and phrases that tend to be used by spammers such as “free” or “credit card” or “weight loss. ” Avoid using ALL-CAPS in your titles. Also, avoid filling your ad with keywords unless those keywords are included in legitimate sentences and phrases. Finally, ensure that your ads have obvious telephone contact information. People in the Craigslist forums regularly admit that they flag ads simply because they can’t find the contact information.
5) Don’t look too commercial
Why? The Craigslist user community frequents the site because of the “free marketplace” feel of it. Corporations posting using traditional branding messaging do not do as well in this environment.
What to do. Avoid HTML tagging, like bolding and underlining. Avoid posting an excess of photos. Vary the content so the ads do not look too “templated. ”
While the rules of the game are constantly being re-written, if you follow these 5 rules you are much less likely to have your posts ghosted or flagged. Here at Rooof, we have developed a posting tool that incorporates all of the 5 rules in a single browser extension that creates Craigslist ads automatically by pulling data and images directly from your website. There is no need to rely on your already busy on-site leasing staff to create effective Craigslist ads. Let our software do all the work for you. For more information, please email me at
How Often Can I Post on Craigslist? - Small Business - Chron ...

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How Often Can I Post on Craigslist? – Small Business – Chron …

One of the ways in which Web surfers look for jobs, sell goods and find services is by posting to Craigslist, an online classified advertising site. Posting is free, which means users may be tempted to flood the site with their ads. However, Craigslist has some rules concerning how often users may post. Failure to follow these rules can result in your ads being removed. Identification Craigslist allows users to post ads for goods and services on localized Craigslist pages, meaning that each set of ads must be posted under a geographical heading, such as “New York City” or “Chicago. ” According to Craigslist’s help pages, the site encourages only local transactions, in which goods and services are paid for in cash and exchanged face-to-face, making geographical proximity a must to pick up items and pay for them. Posting an Advertisement To post on Craigslist, navigate to the Craigslist page for the city in which you want to advertise. On the main page for that city, click “Post to Classifieds” to enter the advertisement creation screen. You’ll be prompted to categorize your posting, whether services offered, wanted ads or selling an item, among other services, and then create the title and body text of the advertisement. How Often Can You Post? According to the rules listed on Craigslist’s website, users may post in only one category in one geographical area once every 48 hours. Following these posting rules are essential: If you post too often or post similar ads in different locations too close to one another, the ads will be blocked. This is commonly referred to as “ghosting. ” When an ad is ghosted, the user creates the ad and publishes it, but it does not appear on the site. This happens without Craigslist ever notifying the user. Enough ghosted ads can even result in your account being blocked entirely. Why Are Ghosted Ads Blocked? Craigslist ghosts ads in an effort to cut down on spam. Unfortunately, you have little recourse to address the issue with the site if your ad or account is blocked. The best bet for those with ghosted ads is to delete the ad entirely and reconstruct it from the ground up. Often, certain domain names are identified by Craigslist as spam. For source pictures in your ad, select well-known photo sharing sites such as Flickr. Cut down on the use of links in your ad; Craigslist often identifies these as spam. References Writer Bio Michael Batton Kaput began writing professionally in 2009. He is an editor at two magazines and a freelance writer. He has been published in “Egypt Today, ” Egypt’s leading current affairs magazine, and “Business Today Egypt, ” Egypt’s number one English-language business magazine. He attended Denison University where he earned a degree in political science and English literature.
about | prohibited - craigslist

about | prohibited – craigslist

safety | recalls | scams | forum
Users must comply with all applicable laws, the CL terms of use, and all posted site rules.
Here is a partial list of goods, services, and content prohibited on craigslist:
weapons; firearms/guns and components; BB/pellet, stun, and spear guns; etc
ammunition, clips, cartridges, reloading materials, gunpowder, fireworks, explosives
offers, solicitation, or facilitation of illegal prostitution and/or sex trafficking
exploitation or endangerment of minors; child pornography
recalled items; hazardous materials; body parts/fluids; unsanitized bedding/clothing
prescription drugs, medical devices; controlled substances and related items
alcohol or tobacco; unpackaged or adulterated food or cosmetics
pet sales (re-homing with small adoption fee ok), animal parts, stud service
endangered, imperiled and/or protected species and any parts thereof, e. g. ivory
false, misleading, deceptive, or fraudulent content; bait and switch; keyword spam
offensive, obscene, defamatory, threatening, or malicious postings or email
anyone’s personal, identifying, confidential or proprietary information
food stamps, WIC vouchers, SNAP or WIC goods, governmental assistance
stolen property, property with serial number removed/altered, burglary tools, etc
ID cards, licenses, police insignia, government documents, birth certificates, etc
US military items not demilitarized in accord with Defense Department policy
counterfeit, replica, or pirated items; tickets or gift cards that restrict transfer
lottery or raffle tickets, sweepstakes entries, slot machines, gambling items
spam; miscategorized, overposted, cross-posted, or nonlocal content
postings or email the primary purpose of which is to drive traffic to a website
postings or email offering, promoting, or linking to unsolicited products or services
affiliate marketing; network, or multi-level marketing; pyramid schemes
any good, service, or content that violates the law or legal rights of others
Please don’t use CL for these purposes, and flag anyone else you see doing so.
Thanks for helping keep craigslist safe and useful for everyone.

Frequently Asked Questions about craigslist rules for posting ads

How much can you post on Craigslist?

According to the rules listed on Craigslist’s website, users may post in only one category in one geographical area once every 48 hours. Following these posting rules are essential: If you post too often or post similar ads in different locations too close to one another, the ads will be blocked.

What can’t you post on Craigslist?

ammunition, clips, cartridges, reloading materials, gunpowder, fireworks, explosives. offers, solicitation, or facilitation of illegal prostitution and/or sex trafficking. exploitation or endangerment of minors; child pornography. recalled items; hazardous materials; body parts/fluids; unsanitized bedding/clothing.

How many paid Craigslist ads can I post?

Craigslist permits you to post one ad in one category and in one city every 48 hours.

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