July 26, 2017

That Time I Tried to Sell Some Stuff on Craigslist...

This is a Public Service Announcement:
If you are a person who is shopping on Craigslist or a similar P2P shopping method, BE POLITE and treat the person you're (not) buying something from with RESPECT like they are an ACTUAL PERSON.

I recently had a need to sell a bunch of furniture. I'm using Craigslist, LetGo (an app), and Facebook Marketplace. And I have had the same following experiences, multiple times, with using each:...
1) The Window Shopper:
This person treats the marketplaces like online dating sites. They have a type of item in mind (e.g. a dresser) and messages everyone who has one for sale asking if the item is still available. Once they get their responses, they ONLY follow up with the person who has their favorite of their options. Everyone else is left wondering if their dresser isn't funny enough, pretty enough, or interesting enough to find love. 

2) The Con Man:
This person acts like they are SUPER interested when they aren't really. They send messages that say "I'll pick it up today" only to not respond again when you ask them when they want to come and get it. Basically the Window Shopper, but strings you along for a couple extra exchanges before ghosting.

The extent of this conversation. 

3) The Bait & Switch:
This person wants your item so much that they get as far as scheduling a time to pick it up. Then they don't show and don't warn you to let you know they won't be coming after all. These people have probably found a different item they like better in between committing to yours and their scheduled pick-up time, but instead of telling you this, they, like the others, ghost. If you do follow up to ask if they still want it after missing their appointment, more often than not, the answer will be an excuse as to why they didn't show up, and avoid telling you they changed their mind about the item. 

Want to feel bad but don't. Also this was on FB, so phone not required for communication. 

What can you do to not be one of these people? 
1) I get it, not everyone is good about updating their items and a bunch are already gone when you're inquiring and that gets annoying. But to those who do still have their item, but you like someone else's better, LET THEM KNOW. If you were in a store and asked a sales person a question about an item, and you decided you didn't want it, would you just turn and walk away silently, or would you thank them and say "I'll think about it" (code for "I don't want it but don't know how to say that politely). 
See how easy!?@>?
2) If you are running late, let the person know your updated ETA. If you are unable to make it and for some reason unable to contact them in a timely matter, contact them as soon as you can and reschedule. Don't make them ask and wonder.

3) If you have changed your mind, notify them ASAP. If you, again, are unable to contact them before your scheduled time for some reason, contact them as soon as you can, apologize, and be honest that you have changed your mind. 

4) Realize that if you do not do 1-3 that you are wasting the time of a person who was willing to sell you their stuff for way less than it's worth, and how would you feel if the shoe was on the other foot. 

Doesn't really answer the question... Also note the dates on the last two messages.

 I should qualify this post with the fact that I have had a number of successful Craigslist sales and will continue to use it. It just seems that people have gotten more rude over the years. Let's all try to be better from now-on, eh?

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