Craigslist HTML Rules- Does anybody understand it?

2 Replies

I don't want to make my ad look like one big block of words that people will glaze over so I want to incorporate some html to make it easier to read. But, I've had my ad, which used HTML, flagged and ghosted for whatever reason and I've heard that that makes any future ads easier to flag. 

So, I want to make sure my use of html in my ad is aboveboard but I'm really confused by the HTML rules on Craigslist and when and when you can't use them.

I tried reading through the Craigslist forum, but it makes my head hurt trying to wade through that. 

The problem is Craigslist own faq isn't that helpful:

https://www.craigslist.org/about/help/faq

It states, "please use HTML sparingly. Users generally prefer ads with little or no added HTML" while also simultaneously stating "if you use HTML in any part of your posting, you must use it throughout."

It seems to say to try to minimize using HTML, but then expects you to use more HTML if you do use it. 

Then, there's a link to its HTML guidelines:

https://www.craigslist.org/about/help/html_in_crai...

Its confusing because its states, "A, IMG, FONT, TABLE, DIV, SPAN, CENTER are supported only in certain categories. Please use CL image upload for up to 24 images.

The HTML below is generally supported in paid jobs and tickets by dealer posts. Unsupported HTML is subject to removal."

So, it gives you a list of accepted HTML, but its acceptable only for paid jobs and tickets by dealer posts? Then what HTML can I use in posting for a rental? 

I thought you couldn't link to other websites, but then one of their accepted HTMLs, the <a> lets you do that. 

And, if I break down the text into bullet points, using symbols like " - ", would Craigslist system consider that to be HTML even though they're not? 

Their rules are definitely confusing, it's not just you. Craigslist has been making it more and more difficult to post using HTML to the point where it is probably best to just not use it. I see that they do allow <a> tags which is what is used for links, but if you are posting in the housing wanted or housing offered, you will see a disclaimer that you cannot use links to drive traffic to other places so that could be why you are getting flagged.

In regards to this:

It states, "please use HTML sparingly. Users generally prefer ads with little or no added HTML" while also simultaneously stating "if you use HTML in any part of your posting, you must use it throughout."

I think what they are saying that is if you start to use HTML formatting in your post, you must use it throughout the post for it to format correctly. It is just a consistency thing.

In regards to this:

And, if I break down the text into bullet points, using symbols like " - ", would Craigslist system consider that to be HTML even though they're not? 

This would not be considered HTML. A list in HTML would be <ul>(unordered list), <ol>(ordered list), <li>(list item).