Please help me sell a small boat on Craigslist
April 16, 2021 7:13 PM   Subscribe

A family member is trying to sell a 16 ft O'Day sailboat. I've had an ad on Craigslist for months with no response, despite living in an area with numerous lakes. Can you provide a lively, interesting script? Or direct me to resources for writing an ad that will capture attention? I'm open to suggestions on how to get this sold asap. Thanks!
posted by racersix6 to Sports, Hobbies, & Recreation (16 answers total)
Do you have to use Craigslist? My locale had a super active Facebook Martketplace and not much happening on Craigslist.
posted by MadMadam at 7:27 PM on April 16 [6 favorites]

Yeah, I've heard Craigslist is still good for a lot of things, but that FB Marketplace is really good with the things that it's good for. I haven't heard anybody talk about FBM like it's taking over CL, but it does do better when selling certain kinds of objects.
posted by rhizome at 7:54 PM on April 16 [1 favorite]

I'd also look for some kind of bulletin board at a local marina. There are also, probably, sailboat dealers that would buy it.
posted by amtho at 7:59 PM on April 16 [7 favorites]

Use well-lit, attractive photos.

End the post with these precise words: "I will remove this ad when the boat is gone. Email or call/text to arrange pickup. Thanks!"
posted by aniola at 8:03 PM on April 16 [2 favorites]

Include a good pun in the subject line.
posted by aniola at 8:06 PM on April 16

I have no experience with boats, but it looks like is the biggest marketplace for buying and selling boats online.
posted by aniola at 8:08 PM on April 16 [3 favorites]

If you guys have a trailer for it, consider selling the boat WITH the trailer and offering to deliver it. I don't think you're doing anything wrong as-is (though concur FB marketplace and a ton of photos help) but it can't hurt.
posted by jessamyn at 8:16 PM on April 16 [1 favorite]

If Craigslist is used in your area full of lakes and you’re
trying to sell a working boat, your actual issue is that your asking price is too high.
posted by miles1972 at 12:05 AM on April 17 [4 favorites]

If your area has a 'sailing season', there will be more potential customers near the beginning of the season.
posted by Homer42 at 1:38 AM on April 17

This is an impulse-buy kinda boat. A lot of people out there see stuff and think, what the hell. So maybe park it near a busy road. Or near a park where families play. Dad will see the boat and think, hey kids you know what would be fun this summer....
posted by everythings_interrelated at 4:28 AM on April 17 [1 favorite]

I've had an ad on Craigslist for months with no response
I'm going to take a guess and say no-one wants to buy a boat in the winter. What's the weather like where you are? I bet interest will pick up when it's warm & sunny - make sure your photos are of the boat in the sun, in a nice location.
posted by EndsOfInvention at 5:02 AM on April 17 [1 favorite]

Poke around the area for clubs that sail that particular boat, or boats like it. Here’s a nice article about the boat (might help you frame the copy in your ad; even better, it includes a link to the Day Sailers Association, which may offer more leads on where/how to sell the boat).

Good luck!
posted by notyou at 7:47 AM on April 17 [1 favorite]

Missed the edit window: the Day Sailer Association includes a forum, with a subforum to list boats for sale, plus links to regional clubs (“fleets”).
posted by notyou at 7:54 AM on April 17

Make a flyer, post at grocery stores and marinas. Post on boat sites. Improve the cop and photos if possible.
posted by theora55 at 11:42 AM on April 17

Response by poster: Thanks everyone! These are fantastic suggestions, feel free to keep 'em coming. Not gonna lie, I really enjoyed MexicanYenta "put a bowl of fruit on it". I'm taking new photos when it's sunny - def adding a bowl of fruit!
posted by racersix6 at 6:20 PM on April 17 [2 favorites]

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