Oodle – Another Craigslist, But Slightly Better

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Created by ex-Excite executives Craig Donato, Scott Kister and Faith Sedlin, Oodle offers a significantly better experience than Craigslist. Reported to be the fastest expanding classifieds website, Oodle might just be Craigslist’s nemesis.

In addition to powering classifieds listings to several major newspapers, it recently welcomed Facebook Marketplace, AOL Classifieds as well as MySpace to their network. Why is Oodle the best player when it comes to online classifieds?

image thumb29   Oodle   Another Craigslist, But Slightly Better

First of all, let’s talk about the interface. Craigslist has received a lot of criticism for its barebones 1990’s design but it has a major advantage that most didn’t perceive at first glance:

  • An extremely simple interface means a low barrier to entry for new users.
  • No graphics, animations; no distractions at all for the user. While not exactly pleasant for the eye, it means the user would get in and find what they were looking for fast.
  • Minimal operating costs; transferring text has the lowest bandwidth requirements and it doesn’t use too many CPU resources either. You could literally run a million dollar business out of your closet. No need to hire coders to maintain the service, debug code; designers to create new promotional images/videos/layouts.

The idea behind Craigslist is genius, and so is the implementation ““ to a point. Create a balance between eye-candy, usability and costs and you’ve got a Craigslist killer: Oodle.

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What’s special about Oodle?

image thumb30   Oodle   Another Craigslist, But Slightly Better

  • It mashes together “˜80,000 sources’ according to their website; which isn’t that far fetched considering they manage classifieds for a number of big players in the market.

Oodle covers listings from national and local marketplaces in 289 regions, 494 colleges in the United States, 120 cities and 84 universities in the UK, and 39 regions and 31 universities in Canada. ““ Oodle Blog

  • It has an alert system that notifies the user once a product is available. Instead of searching every day, you sit back and receive the notification in your inbox.
  • A large inventory ““ many sources means more products and a good angle for negotiating.
  • Other classifieds sites use Oodle’s API to provide results ““ which means your posting will reach more than one single service. These sites are in the “˜hundreds’.
  • Oodle generates more revenue by attracting advertisers and having a paid inclusion program. Submission to the site is still free ““ but if you want more exposure you can pay for it.
  • International reach ““ just recently opened for Ireland and India.

image thumb31   Oodle   Another Craigslist, But Slightly Better

Oodle is definitely a better implementation of the online classifieds idea ““ and while it is not as revolutionary as Craiglist was when it first appeared ““ it does the job better and that’s always what matters for the end-user.

I’ve asked Kirsten Bollen, from Public Relations at Oodle, a couple of questions:

    Q: What makes Oodle, in your opinion, better than Craiglist? What feature would you say differentiates you from the other services?

    A: Oodle operates the largest network of classifieds services in the U.S., so buyers can easily find the best deals with access to more than 40 million listings aggregated from more than 80,000 different sites. Oodle also offers a compelling platform for sellers to promote their listings by leveraging the reach of Oodle’s extensive network of more than 250 partner sites, including AOL, Comcast and MySpace, among many others.

    Q:How would you see the service evolve in the future?

    A: Oodle recently launched Facebook’s new Marketplace, where we introduced a new feature – Sell For a Cause – which allows you to donate the proceeds from items you sell to over a million participating charities including UNICEF, the Sierra Club and local organizations like the Boys and Girls Club of San Francisco.

I’d like to hear what you think about Craigslist and Oodle. If you haven’t tried it yet, go to Oodle.com.

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11 Comments - Write a Comment

Reply

Mike

Oodle is definitely a step up from Craigslist, as far as the interface is concerned, but so are most other sites made within the last 8 or so years. Either way, its good to see some color on a classifieds site, and the lack of graphics will definitely cause fewer distractions and promote a “get in, get out” mindset.

If someone was looking for more than just a quick fix, I’d suggest taking a look at iList. It’s a great social classifieds site which promotes a community and is all about users helping other users spread the word about their listings to maximize their audience.

Stefan Neagu

Thanks for the tip Mike! I’ll take a look at iList and if all goes well, probably write about it.

Reply

Webonlyplease

I think oodle is great; I’ve used it many times to look for stuff like used high end office chairs. However, I’ve found myself gravitating towards the vertical specific engines for things like house, jobs and cars; I’ve found the vertical search engines to have better and more indepth functionalities given their sole focus on one thing. For house listing searches, I use Trulia; for jobs, I use indeed.com; for car search, I use iseecars.com.

Stefan Neagu

I agree, specialty websites, like real shops, provide better results. Having a aggregator like Oodle provides more convenience.

Reply

Yorick

I’m going to have to agree with mike on this one. iList is definitely a pretty rad site, its got a sweet interface plus I can link my social networks with the site and share my ad with all the people I know. Totally worth taking a look at.

Reply

patkoch

anybody can tell me how link my ad title to my website in oodle?

Reply

Jack

I agree about Oodle. Nice site, but they are not showing all cities in US. I just find out a new site called americanlisted.com. You can select every state, city, zip code etc. The point with classifieds is to be local. I don’t want go to other cities to buy for example a used bike for $50. I like the ´structure they have. It’s so easy.
http://www.americanlisted.com
Look forward your comments.
Jack.

Reply

Thomas

I had a look at americanlisted and I agree on that it’s very neat. Even found some interesting stuff in my little town.

Reply

castor611

http://globallistings.org/ is another great GLOBAL classified ad site. Bad thing about craiglist is that ads expire and advertisers have to waste time to re-post them regularly. Unlike GLOBALLISTINGS, they don’t impose artificial expiration dates, the ads may remain online as long as they are relevant.

Plus, I’ve read that until March 15 2010, you can get NINETY percent discount on all your GlobalListings.org posting by simply using promotional code 5a2c0ec3

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