I am currently looking for some input on the idea of running a classifieds section on a website.
Has anyone ever run such a system on their site with any success?
Charging a nominal fee to list an item or perhaps even an auction module?
Site has a large base of people in a region all interested in the same topic.
In this instance do you just set up a BB type listings they case use for free or do you attempt while not being greedy about it monetize this aspect of the online community?
What have been peoples experiences?
I have a classified section on some of my forums, and I've never tried to charge for ads there. I've thought about it, but in my opinion it would kill the activity level in that forum. I prefer to just get ad revenue off those pages like the rest of the forum. I have seen some site convert from free to fee, and the ones that I've seen which were successful are sites that have at least several pages of new entries every day. I probably have about a page full of new entries each day, which I don't think is enough to justify it. You can take a look at mine here... http://pdaphonehome.com/forums/garage-sale/
I'd be careful. It is a bit late for this, as Craigslist and a host of other sites beat you to it. Unless, of course, you have an established user base.
I think a free one is fine and try to make money off ads not make people pay to use it.
Yeah i was 99% sure I was going to leave it as a free part of the community.
I have just seen several successfull models that charge a nominal fee for posting large ticket items.
It just almost seems fair that you provide them with such a opportunity for exposure and gain you get something out of it.
Also not so sure on how to integrate ads into the forums yet.
There are some quick and easy classifieds scripts out there - 68classifieds and phpclassifieds. You should consider starting off free and then charging at a later point if your site becomes popular.