What is Craigslist?
I like to think of Craigslist as the Swiss army knife of the Internet. It’s been around for a long time, and today it’s one of the most popular websites on the Internet, for a variety of reasons. Craigslist is a place that allows individuals to advertise all kinds of different things to people who live locally, via public listings. Whether you’re looking for a new house, trying to sell your old iPhone, or looking for friends in a new town, Craigslist can probably help you make it happen. It’s popular, it’s easy to use, and it’s completely free to all of its users.
If you’re looking for a website that is as versatile as Craigslist, you’re not going to have a lot of luck. Craigslist decides to be a jack-of-all-trades, and most websites choose to be a master of one. On Craigslist, you can sell your old stuff, look for a new job, find a new house, and so on. Most websites commit themselves to one thing. In this article, I’ll talk about some of those websites. Although none of them can be used exactly like Craigslist, they do an excellent job in their chosen niche. Wihout further ado, here’s a list of some of the best websites like Craigslist.
For job listings: Monster
Whether you’re looking to hire or looking to be hired, Monster is a great job listing website. When you’re looking for a job listing website, the most important factor is popularity. If you’re looking to hire, you need to have an applicant pool that is as large as possible. If you’re looking to be hired, there needs to be as many open positions as possible. Monster is probably the most popular job search website on the entire Internet, which already gives it a substantial advantage over its competitors. Craigslist is also pretty popular, and depending on where you live, it may be better for finding local listings. However, Monster offers much more sophisticated filtering options, enabling users to narrow their searches in a much more precise way. It’s much easier to look for openings on this website, which makes it much more appealing to both employers and the unemployed.
Monster also offers users the ability to apply for jobs directly from the website. Craigslist’s set-up is a little less sophisticated, with most job listings linking to an application website, which adds a whole extra step to the process. Some Craigslist-listing employers take applications the old-fashioned way, having applicants submit their resumes to an email address. Sometimes, less is more, but with more competitive positions, it’s important for the hiring process to be as organized as possible. Monster offers a more streamlined experience than Craigslist, which is great. Still, if you’re an employer, keep in mind that Monster costs money to post listings. Still, I think the fact that you’re able to share information about an opening to millions of potential applicants is well worth what you’re paying.
For buying and selling local goods: Letgo
Arguably the most popular part of Craigslist is the ability to easily buy and sell local goods. Websites like eBay let you buy goods on the cheap, but you can usually buy things off of Craigslist for cheaper, since there’s no need to pay for any kind of shipping. Buying locally is convenient, cheap, and easy to do on Craigslist. There are a lot of other websites out there that let you buy and sell local goods and there isn’t really a single dominant option. If I had to choose a single platform, though, I would probably choose Letgo. Letgo is really popular right now, and it’s only on the way up.
The only disadvantage of using this website over Craigslist is that it isn’t quite as popular. Depending on where you live, you may have trouble finding users who live in your area. However, Letgo has been pushing a massive marketing campaign recently, and you’ve probably seen some of their commercials on television. Just as with any listing website, it’s important for buying/selling websites to be as popular as possible. So, you can rest assured in knowing that Letgo is working hard to expand upon their user base, which is already pretty large to begin with. Not to mention, this website is easy to use, allowing users to post and view listings from either the desktop website or from an app. Again, they are making the platform as accessible as they can. This may be a bit of a dark horse pick, but I think that this website improves by that day, and that it has potential to become a leader in its field.
For buying and selling local services: Amazon
No, that’s not a mistake. Amazon has dominated the e-commerce game for several years, and you might not think of it as a place to hire someone to groom your pets. However, with Amazon Services, that isn’t only possible, but it’s also a pretty popular offering. Amazon sells its goods separate from its services, but service listings still get a good amount of traffic. (However, you shouldn’t expect to get as many people looking at your service as they might look at your used PS3 listing. Amazon Services has gained traction over the years, but it still doesn’t really come close to Amazon’s goods sales.) Buyers just navigate to the services portion of Amazon, and they’re able to pick and choose what they’re looking for, and who they want to buy from. Depending on where you live, you’ll see varying success in finding someone to do something for you. In my experience, though, you should be able to find most of what you need, within reason. It will be hard to find someone willing to install a heater in the middle of the summer, and it would be hard to find someone willing to shovel snow from your driveway if you live in Florida.
As a seller, you should be forewarned that Amazon requires you to jump through quite a few hoops to get approved. You have to pay to be a part of their listings, and you also have to submit to regular background checks. All of this is pretty standard, though, and Amazon is just performing due diligence. They have to make sure that all of their sellers are licensed and insured to do what they’re being paid to do. It’s a lot easier to sell your services on Craigslist, in my opinion, but I think that Amazon attracts a different kind of customer base by providing their buyers with such a secure experience. I may be more inclined to buy a repair service from Amazon, because I know that the approval process for sellers is so thorough. It’s a little different, but it’s still a great alternative.
For meeting people: Tinder
I’m kind of cheating with this one, since Tinder isn’t actually a website. However, I think you would be hard-pressed to find a social website that even touches Tinder in terms of popularity. Just like every other kind of listing website, popularity is key when it comes to any kind of social platform. When you’re trying to meet new people, you want to have as many options as possible. You just can’t find that level of popularity on any website — it is much more convenient for people to meet people through a mobile app than it is for them to meet people through the computer. People manage the majority of their social media and social experiences through a mobile device to begin with. To use a social meeting platform on a computer feels inefficient, because it kind of is. With an app like Tinder, you’re able to speak with people on-the-go, without having to be tethered to a desktop.
Anyway, Tinder is easily the most popular social app out there, which is saying a lot. Local meet up apps have exploded in popularity over the last couple of years, and Tinder has come out on top. I don’t know if there’s much to say about its interface, since it’s so bare-bones. On Tinder, you make a profile, you look at other people’s profiles, you chat with them, and you meet up with them if you want to. Tinder can be used for a variety of different social purposes, but I think its most popular use is to find romantic prospects, as well as initiate more “casual” encounters. It’s nothing fancy, but it does what it needs to do. Just like with Craigslist’s meeting forums, it’s important to exercise caution when you’re meeting people over Tinder. Although the app does take measures to ensure that the community is secure, it’s still very possible for you to meet up with someone, only to find that they’re a bit of an unsavory character. I don’t think this is something that you can hold against Tinder, though, since it’s an issue that you’ll encounter with just about any social media platform.
For housing listings: Zillow
Like Tinder, Zillow operates in a highly competitive space. In fact, I wouldn’t be surprised if I catch criticism for saying that Zillow is the best housing listing website like Craigslist. There are quite a few other websites, like Trulia, Homefinder, and Realtor, that you could probably make an argument for. However, I’m bringing my own personal experiences in with this choice. Over the last couple of years, I have helped quite a few friends move into new houses and apartements, and Zillow is the only website that any of them used. It’s one of the most recognizable names in the housing listing space, it’s simple to use, and it offers a wealth of options.
Zillow’s interface is pretty similar to Craigslist’s own interface, which is to say that it isn’t particularly flashy. You punch in your zip code, select which kind of listing you’re looking for, and find the house that’s right for you. Then, you fill out a form next to the listing that allows you to get into contact with the property manager, and you can start getting into the finer details of the buying or rental process. Zillow is mostly pretty hands-off during this, and it’s ridiculously easy to apply for listings. The pre-application process takes all of two minutes, which I think is pretty on-par with how easy it is to respond to housing listings on Craigslist. Selling on Zillow is pretty easy, too. You just input your address, put in pictures and details about your home, and wait for the applications to roll in. It’s all very easy and painless. Now, for some people, this more lax attitude from Zillow may be a little off-putting. If you’re putting up a listing, you should fully anticipate getting some stupid joke applications. You would have pretty much the exact same issues on Craigslist, though. I chose Zillow over its competitors because Zillow is as easy to use and popular as Craigslist, while still being just as effective. It’s an excellent alternative that I recommend to anyone looking for one.