Thursday, March 22, 2012

How to Set Up a Targeted Craigslist RSS feed with Pictures


If you are looking for something specific on Craigslist, specifically something as crucial as finding housing, you may spend way too much time refreshing Craigslist and re-reading the same posts over and over again.

But, there is a better way!

First of all, when doing a housing search, Craigslist usually gives you a couple of different tabs to select from within your area.  These tabs may not limit your search enough for you, especially if you are looking for only particular cities within a tab.

Here's a hint.  Inside of the search box... type the cities you are searching for, for example:

(mountain view)|(palo alto)
The parenthesis will group the search term you are looking for, and the "|" is the symbol for 'or'.

Now, after you perform the search, if you scroll all the way to the bottom of your search results you'll see this symbol.  Click the orange RSS and you'll get let to a webpage with a bunch of text.

Ignore the scary code and copy the web address at the top.

Now go here: http://pipes.yahoo.com/pipes/pipe.info?_id=YJYsrdrF3RG3_SGwbbsjiw .  Copy and paste the RSS url into the box you see on the page.  The reason for the following step is to insert images directly into the feed.


Now you'll see a feed generated of your Craigslist search with small Thumbnail images.

Click "Get as RSS" and you can copy and paste the URL to be used with your Mail with your MacBook Pro.  You could also click the Google button and import the feed into Google reader. 

Using either of these options lets you have your specific search directly sent to you and you can keep track of the posts you've read, delete the posts you aren't interested.  Now you can cleanly search through the information in an efficient and organized manner.

Good luck on your search!

1 comment:

mistakesweremade said...

This is a great tip, but the tool seems to have stopped working. Some people have suggested that CL has changed the server they use to host their images, which is preventing the images from showing up in the feeds. I'm seeing the loss of all ad text as well as the images, so now all this pipe returns for me is the ad titles. This suggests that the problem is larger than the image server...

Has anyone found a workaround?