Catch 22 for online marketplace website

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I am having a problem with generating traffic to my website andgetting members to sign up. It is a craigslist-like site where users can buy and sell aquarium hobby equipment. The benefit of this site is that it is directly related to the hobby and has more specific hobby-related categories for searching for items.

My problem is that (I think) in order to get people to join and post, they want to see that the website has traffic and members who will buy their stuff, but I cant get members to join because of that!?!

Is this thinking accurate?

I can't promote my site on the hobbies most popular forums and I've started writing craigslist users who are selling aquarium hobby equipment, but havent had any sign up yet.

My SEO is good, I show up first when searching Blue World Aquatics, but most users I get are checked as sploggers!

Any help pointing me in the right direction would be appreciated
#catch #marketplace #members #online #seo #website

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