The "free" Craigslist classifieds listing site is preparing to start charging for certain real estate postings at its New York site and is launching a new, bulk posting interface for "easy submission of multiple new posts,":
After many months of evaluating feedback and deliberating, we've decided to institute a $10 fee for each listing posted to the broker apartment categories on the New York site (both "fee" and "no fee")...Most of our preparations are complete, and we are looking at June 15 as a potential new rollout date...
Based on feedback regarding the huge volume discounts offered by other providers (up to 95% or more), we are now contemplating offering discounted rates for pre-paid block purchases...
The pre-paid block listings purchases discounts would range from 10% to 60%, off the $10 straight per lisiting fee: a 125 ad block purchase would provide for a 10% discount, or $9 per ad for a total purchase of $1125...a 5000 ad block purchase would provide for a 60% discount, or $4 per ad for a total purchase of $20,000.
By soliciting $20,000 purchases of real estate listings from brokers, and enabling bulk uploads of such listings, to be competitive with other "providers", Craigslist is making dramatic changes to its "business model" and to the nature of its "free", community driven offering which is currently populated mainly with individual, free listings, individually posted, by individuals.
Here is a screenshot of the new RSS bulk listing format (source Craigslist):
Will Craigslist's new fee-based, bulk listing strategy negatively impact loyalty to the site and its usage? Join the conversation: "Talk Back" below to share your thoughts.
UPDATE, CRAIG NEWMARK HAS "TALKED BACK:"
"No change in our business model"
"It'll also get rid of some of the worst brokers."
Stay tuned to this Digital Micro-Markets Blog for more on the Craigslist story!