Craigslist, The New Want Ad
Buy, sell and trade is as old as father time, something like that. Fast forward a couple of thousands years later, when a person wanted to buy, sell and/or trade, an ad was placed in the local newspaper. Then came Al Gore and his invention, the Internet (I had to put this in for Judy).
I remember 20 years ago, I bought 10 tickets to a Redskins vs Bears game by using the Internet to find a Chicago Ad for tickets. I put my full faith and trust in the seller as I sent a check/money order and waited for the tickets. Yep, the tickets came.
Then about five years ago, eBay arrived. Yes, I dabbled in eBay, buying and selling a few items. It’s a great medium to sell and buy stuff, but it comes with a cost and time to box-up the item or pay for shipping (which is sometimes the same price of the item).
Two years ago, I tried the new flavor of the month, Craigslist, and boy did I fall in love with the List. At first, I bought a few items (pampered chef and Longaberger) then I sold a few items (shoes and luggage). The process was free and simple. What I find fascinating about the List is that you get immediate response and/or interaction with the seller.
My first buy over $25 was my Sweet Ride, 2008 Chevy Impala. Two years ago I was in need of a car and was looking at the Impala’s. The ad was well written, the car looked great, however, the price was two grand more than my budget. After three weeks of chatting with the seller, I was able to negotiate the price down by two grand. The sweet ride is the best car I’ve ever had (leather heated seats, sun roof and a wicked stereo system).
In the last six months, I’ve sold 25 Longaberger baskets and I’ve bought ten or so. Other items bought: an angel for my memory garden, patio bench, leather bar stool. I’ve always picked up or delivered my items at a neutral location. Somehow meeting at McDonalds seems to work out the best.
So what happens when the buyer and seller can’t coordinate a time to meet? Well that occurred last month. I had a new patio screen door to sell and placed it on Craigslist for $25.
Within two days I had five messages and the first person I talked to wanted it. He was coming from Southern Iowa and since I could not haul the item in my car, we tried to figure out a time to meet. Well that wasn’t working so I made a bold decision. I said, okay I’ll help you out by leaving the item on my front step. I’ll trust that you will leave the cash under the mat. If you don’t, and I don’t know you from Harry/Sam/John, you will have to live with yourself. He said he would and I thought it’s only $25. Well to my surprise, the item was picked up and the cash was under the mat with a thank-you note. I say, only in Iowa can you put full faith in someone to do the right thing.
That Girl, Ann Marie