Craigslist is a tool for designed for finding local services and items for sale. In other words, it limits your searches to one territory at a time. However, there are a number of tools out there that can cast a wider net. Using the following solutions will give you the chance to search statewide, nationwide, or worldwide. Do bear in mind though, that buying anything online from an individual without seeing it does put you at risk of fraud, so be wary of buying from too far afield.
If you’d rather not use Craigslist to find a product or service, don’t forget there are a number of great Craigslist alternatives you can try.
How to use Onecraigs
Although there are a few web-based Craigslist search engines out there, Onecraigs is our favorite for its adherence to the simplistic, lightweight design of Craigslist itself. It has a search bar that looks through listings in every Craigslist city in the US, giving you immediate access to a wider pool of potential buyers and sellers than the main Craigslist search options. If that’s a little too expansive for your tastes though, there are also options to search Craigslist by state. All you need do is scroll down, select the state you want to search in and then input what you’re looking for in the search bar.
You’ll need to scroll past a few sponsored results on each page, but the tool is entirely free to use, loads quickly, and responds even quicker once you’ve made a search. The results are detailed enough to give you a basic, text run-down of what’s on offer, as well as a URL link directly to the original advert. If you’re searching nationwide, that can also be a great indicator of where your results come from.
Alternative method: Search Tempest
If you don’t live in the U.S. or want to search a wider array of online classifieds, Search Tempest offers everything but the kitchen sink. It can search Craigslist in its entirety, as well as Ebay auctions, and Amazon Marketplace listings. You can customize your search by site, city, and distance from any particular zip code, or you can simply search the entire world.
The scope of Search Tempest can be a little intimidating and unless you want to pay international shipping on items, you are going to want to limit where you search, but for those that want to cast the broadest net possible, Search Tempest can do it.
CPlus for Craigslist – iOS
CPlus for Craigslist is a great Craigslist search tool for iOS that gives you the option to search in as many cities and territories as you want all at once and is one of a few that is officially licensed by Craigslist. It also lets you set up search alerts, so if you’re looking for something nationwide over a period of time, it can automatically inform you if what you’re after becomes available. If you expect to make regular purchases, you can even input your favorite products or types of adverts to be notified whenever new ones are posted.
If you’re not sure how wide to set your search, CPlus for Craigslist has expansive geo-location support. That makes it quick and easy to find nearby cities that might have what you’re looking for. Once you’ve begun your search, there are advanced filtering and sorting systems to make parsing through the results that much easier.
The app is entirely free to use, although there are advanced features you can pay for if you wish. For $1.99 you can enhance the alert feature, while the pro version unlocks the ability to use multiple Craigslist accounts and to post more often.
CL Mobile – Android
If you’re using an Android device and want to search across broad swathes of Craigslist or a variety of other online classified sites and services, CL Mobile is one of the best available. Although it defaults to searching around your current location or a chosen city, you can search multiple cities and territories at once. You can even expand your search to every city around the world if you so choose, and search across multiple marketplaces like Facebook or Hoobly, among others.
There are options for searching in specific countries, letting you see what prices are like abroad, or extending your search to surrounding countries for a wider array of purchasing and selling options.
The app is free to use, although there are adverts that fund it. Alternatively, you can sign up to a $2 per month subscription to remove the adverts and gain access to updates faster than non-paying users.