Archives For Craigslist

Guest post by Tyann Marcink

It was three weeks ago.

Well, maybe just two weeks—but it seems like an eternity.

No emails. No phone calls. Just a message from “Marie in NY” that was obviously a phishing attempt. Why haven’t the inquiries flooded in? How is it that a scammer found your property, but the legit folk seem to no longer be taking vacations?

"click" on flickr, by inna dee (CC BY 2.0)

After checking the number of views on the brand new listing, the realization hits: nobody is even clicking through to look at your property.

Take a deep breath. The travelers are there. They really, truly do want to find a vacation rental just like yours. But are you giving them a reason to click? Continue Reading…

Craigslist is an advertising opportunity that vacation rental owners seem to love or hate — and sometimes both. But there’s no denying it can generate inquiries.

Let’s start with positives

  1. It’s massive. In fact, it’s the eighth most visited website in the U.S.; One in every five Americans uses Craigslist each month.
  2. It’s free. That’s the main reason I encourage homeowners and managers to at least give it a try — there’s little to lose and, potentially, a lot to gain.

classified adOnline classified ads can be a bit of a jungle, featuring offers for many different categories from cars to clothing. When it comes to vacation rentals, they also have a bad reputation for fraud – among both owners and renters.

However, some of these sites are very popular, particularly in specific locations. With minimal investment of time or money, as long as you keep an eye out for suspicious requests there’s little to lose by adding your own listing to the mix. From my experience, aside from the major listing sites, classified sites have driven the most inquiries and bookings over any other channel.  They can be particularly helpful for filling last-minute inventory if you find yourself approaching an unfilled period on your calendar. Continue Reading…

"Duane Casting the Net", by wormwould on FlickrWe recently blogged about a common Craigslist scam: Someone creates an ad listing your vacation rental, then confirms reservations – and collects deposits – from people who think they’re making a legitimate reservation.  All this can happen without your even knowing.

When the scammer disappears, your would-be guests are left ripped off and disappointed, and you’re left with what is, at best, an awkward situation.

I want to show you how to create a “digital net” that can help reduce the likelihood of your getting stuck in this awful situation.

Craigslist: Offsetting the Risk

I advertise my vacation rental on Craigslist a lot because it works really well in my area (Sonoma). I’m always on guard when I’m on Craigslist (whether I’m a buyer or a seller), but the benefits outweigh the risks for me, so I haven’t felt the need to avoid it.   I think I’m also prettygood at spotting the potential scams.

Regardless of how I feel about Craigslist, someone using my property info is a different beast because it can happen whether or not I use Craigslist and it can happen without my even knowing. So, while I can’t stop someone from doing this, I had some ideas on ways that I could alert myself when this was happening, and I wanted to test them out.

As someone who’s tech savvy, I decided to create a “digital net” to help protect myself – and unsuspecting travellers – from getting wrapped up in this con. As a starting point, I found a great reference about Craigslist alerts on Quora. Continue Reading…

"For Rent", photo by HowNowDesign on FlickrOnline advertising leaves vacation rental owners open to a variety of scams, from phishing (where someone tries to steal your online identity) to scam artists sending fraudulent inquiries.

But have you heard about schemes where scammers use copy-and-paste and a Craigslist ad to pretend to be you – or at least, someone who owns your home?

How it works

To be fair, these scams aren’t new, aren’t limited to the Internet, and aren’t exclusive to Craigslist. However, websites like Craigslist make these traps easy to set up and more accessible to potential vacation renters.

Continue Reading…

craigslist sfbayFor the eleventh day of MyVR Marketing Tips, give Craigslist a try — or another try, if you’ve tested Craigslist postings in the past.

Craigslist is a free classifieds website, and people often have mixed experiences with it. However, it has some clear benefits:

  • It’s free,
  • It’s the 9th most visited website in the U.S.,
  • People do go to Craigslist specifically looking for this information, which means that
  • For low cost and little effort, you can potentially get a solid return on the investment of your time.

To pull an effective listing together, follow our seven steps for vacation rental advertising on Craigslist.

  1. Create an account,
  2. Select your location,
  3. Create an enticing title,
  4. Write your post description and call-to-action,
  5. Upload photos,
  6. Confirm your listing, renew, and repost,
  7. Avoid phishing and fraud.

One of the biggest complaints about Craigslist is the risk of fraud and phishing (where someone tries to steal your personal information). Always be wary of suspicious behavior and odd inquiries; while sometimes these may be legitimate, try to follow-up with phone conversations and always trust your gut instinct.



This post is part of our 12 Days of Vacation Rental Marketing series. Subscribe to the blog and we’ll send you an email each day with a new post.

Thanksgiving PorchHappy Thanksgiving from all of us at MyVR! We hope you’re enjoying the day with your family and friends, giving thanks for all of the wonderful things in your life, including a booked vacation rental.

Wait, you haven’t booked your vacation rental yet? Well, what are you waiting for? It’s not too late to book up this holiday season at your rental.

If you’ve still got availability for 2012, here’s some tips to fill up your calendar this holiday season.

1. Offer a promotion

While it may be too late for some travelers to book flights for a long holiday vacation, it’s not too late for local or nearby guests to take a last-minute getaway. At this point, it’s time to decide whether you’d rather offer a discount on your rental, or risk that it goes unoccupied for the holiday season. Continue Reading…

Craigslist for Vacation RentalsCraigslist is the 8th most trafficked website in the US right now, trumping Twitter, LinkedIn, and Bing. Needless to say, that’s a lot of visitors to the website made famous by offering free classified posts to the masses.

From the forum fodder it’s clear that owners have a pretty mixed view of Craigslist as a marketing channel – citing spam and fraud as reasons not to use it. But, there are plenty of owners (ourselves included) that have been actively using the site with great success. If you’re ready to give it a shot, these are the 7 steps to get you started. Continue Reading…