Thursday, March 31, 2011

Updated best sellers

Since hitting a million gold I've drastically changed how I work and what I work with. As you've seen in my business reports over the last month or so, I've started working with a lot of random things. Some have been great and others not so much. That in mind I decided that with that and all of the recent market shake ups that I should give this subject a much needed update.

I'll be covering each of the primary markets with what is selling the most often and any other items worth noting due to high profit or niche markets. As per usual with this type of entry, there will be very little explanation in each section. For all items mentioned here you can (generally) assume that if you craft and list 5 on the AH, at least 2 will sell before they expire.

~ Weapon - Crusader. The recipe is no longer dropped by the old mobs and it very well may be out of game.
~ Chest - mighty stats
~ Chest - powerful stats
~ Gloves - mastery
~ Gloves - haste
~ Gloves - major agility
~ Cloak - protection
~ Cloak - stealth
~ Weapon - berserking
~ Weapon - massacre
~ Staff - greater spell power
~ Bracers - major stamina
~ Bracers - critical strike
~ Boots - earthen vitality

~ Brilliant
~ Bold
~ Reckless
~ Artful
~ Adept
~ Potent
~ Veiled
~ Purified
~ Burning
~ Agile
~ Puissant
~ Fractured
~ Rigid
~ Solid
~ Sparkling

~ Bloodied pyrium gear. Make sure to watch the market for at least a week before crafting anything!
~ Ornate pyrium gear. Same as above.
~ Ebonsteel belt buckle

Leather working.
~ Mammoth mining bag
~ Earthen leg armor
~ Dragonscale leg armor
~ Icescale leg armor

~ Mechano hog. Niche market with no competition and huge, albeit slow, profit margins.
~ Personal world destroyer

~ Netherweave bag
~ Powerful enchanted/ghostly spell thread

Thanks for stopping by!

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Low profit professions: Part 2

Moving right along with tailoring. The rare spell threads are the same case with the enggy scopes, great to skill up with and therefore flooded under material costs. After that the only real profitable item to sell are the epic threads and nether bags. Nether bags have a great rate of sales, but an abysmal profit margin so they aren't a great market to focus on. That leaves only the epic threads and 26 slot bags to sell.

Unfortunately they have a week long CD and the chaos orb version is not worth mentioning as it requires 4. The 26 spot bags sell to a very select few people and slowly at that. When every tailor only has one decent item to sell (once a week) there isn't a huge margin for income, let alone profit.

Then we have leather working. This is a profession that has very little to craft much like tailoring. But unlike tailoring the epic leg armors have no CD on them which means that the rate of sales can compensate for the smaller markets. In addition to this there are the profession bags but those require rep from wrath that is not easy to max out without having done it previously. Also like tailoring, the blue leg armors are used to skill up very often thus flooding the market and dropping their price considerably.

Also with the potential for a massive flood of raw materials from TB crocodiles the prices on all LW items from cata can be subject to drastic price shifts making it difficult to get a handle on the market and prime times to sell and buy.

All in all there are still ways to make money without grinding even with these professions. It just requires significantly more effort and patience than the others. If these are the only professions that you have access to then naturally I recommend that you do what you can to get one of the more profitable ones leveled up. Either by leveling an alt that can grab you 2 of the 4 best ones or by dropping the lowest profit one you have and skilling it up the hard way.

Though the down side is of course that with only having low end professions the initial investment may be far too steep for your average player. If this is your situation then you'll have to do the same thing that any AH baron has had to do when they started. Find the most profitable raw material that you can farm, suck it up and get your hands dirty.

Thanks for stopping by!

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Low profit professions: Part 1

This is part one of two on professions that are on the low end of profits. In an odd situation, this entry is too long to be a single one, but not quite long enough to be split into two parts. But in the interest of simplicity I decided to split it up any way.

Somehow there are still a large number of people that are struggling to maintain over a few thousand gold. A large number of people having under 10k and some still that have no means of making gold other than farming. I often say that a lot of these people are simply lazy, stupid, or are merely ignorant of the AH. The purpose of this entry today is twofold. The first is to in part apologize to a small minority of these people who cannot seems to make a decent amount of gold with honest effort. The second is to point out a few professions/markets that are in serious need of help to make the wow gold. Each of the professions I mention today are ones that I suggest that you work on skilling up last when deciding on what profession to work next.

I've recently written about the 3 professions that can make you a gold mine in no time and a short overview of the rest of the professions. As it stands JC, alchemy, inscription, and enchanting are the top gold making professions out there while the rest fall drastically short. For today we'll ignore those wonderful gold printing machines and focus on the rest in the interest of brevity. The point here is that in you are of the small group that has only a gathering profession and one of the other ones available, it is entirely possible (and likely) that you won't be swimming in gold any time soon without becoming a camper, even with an honest effort on your part.

First off is black smithing. The primary issues with this profession are that there is so little to sell, such a small market for them, and generally any competition is devastating. While buckles sell very well, they don't make enough of a profit to afford any nice vanity items or a boe epic here or there. The enchanting rods and pvp gear are great, but again they are a very small market and serve more of a supplement than a primary market. However the best part of smithing currently is that while profits may be small, they are indeed consistent. They are also consistent enough that you can fully sustain all repairs and raiding consumables without needing to grind dailys every day.

Next is engineering. Over the last two weeks, I've sold 4 mechano hogs, half a dozen mini fel reavers, and a handful of bomb pets. This is partially the same situation as with BS as it targets a small market, but does have the potential for high profit margins. While enggy can make great profits, they are far from consistent and generally quite slow. Also there is the need to be exalted with the horde expedition to make the bike which takes a good amount of effort if you don't have it already from wrath. Even with the slow sales and high profits this profession technically can sustain you, but it will not be an easy time building up any sort of bank. I think one of the biggest issues here is market flooding.

Any profession that can craft a consumable is typically going to do well, except in the case where that consumable is one of the prime items to craft to skill up. This may seem like a great thing as you can make back your money from leveling it, you will be one of hundreds thinking the same thing. That means the expectation of recouping losses is not going to go as well as planned. Personally I have a toon that is enggy/mining on another server and after a few weeks of solid AH playing is only just now breaking 11k gold. With only enggy it will not be easy to jump start any other business.

Continuing on with this tomorrow.

Report: 3-29

Yes it's that time again. Today's the day of resets, updates, and weekly collections. Here's my weekly report of what I've been selling and in what markets. I also give a few notes on them with up to date market observations in addition to the weekly profit from everything combined. As always, numbers and bottom lines come first.

Previous week gold total: 1,255,000
Total sales: 265,000
Weekly profit: 126,000
Current gold total: 1,381,000

Profits from MySales:

Gems, LW, & misc:

Yellow, blue, purple, meta, common gems:

Tailoring, misc glyphs, & vendor pets:

Enchanting & smithing:

Engineering & mining:

Another 100k profit in a week, not bad. At this rate I'll be up to two million in just under two months.

Detailed Recap:
Ah, doing much better this week, I only missed one full day of posting! I also managed to sell another motorcycle for my full price of 17k which had a rather nasty AH cut. Hard ele bars have been also selling so well that I've gone through my entire stokpile of normal ele bars so instead of prospecting this week I had to go and smelt well over half of the ore I picked up over the weekend.

I also noticed that I wasn't crafting any of the major agility enchant scrolls for any gear. So I went and crafted a set of each and wow! They've been selling constantly for some really good profits. The main ones are for gloves and cape which is good because they mostly need cosmics which I have coming out of my ears. Naturally I have added them to my list of standard inventory.

On the topic of enchanting, wrath weapon enchants have been selling so much that I've ran out of abyss crystals mid week and had to increase my buying price again. Hopefully when maelstroms go down in price this market won't entirely vanish, I'm making such great profits here. I also came into a nice supply of cheap primal airs which is great because all of those mid range enchants have all been sold. I am sure though that a few of the wrath enchants will still sell regularly because there isn't a cata equivalent of them. Namely stamina to bracers and any of the staff enchants even though cata ones can be cheaper and are always better.

Due to a consistent drought of supply for cata dust most of my stokpile has been used up. Because of that I've taken to adding the DE bit into my ore shuffle out of necessity. You know it's necessary when you go through 800 dust in a week's time frame. Something must have changed, because the rare quality procs of the jewelry have been selling VERY well. I mean surprisingly well, I've gone through all of the necklaces jasper rings, and everything. Definitely makes the shuffle much more profitable than before.

I sold another pair of random enchants from TBC this week. This time it was greater agility and executioner to weapon. And once again I don't have much idea of who is buying these things, but I'm not complaining. Each of them sold for a smooth 100g or so over material prices. On that same note I've sold a few more scrolls of enchant winter's might.

I've still been doing great with boe pvp gear from BS along with any crafted epics that I happen to get orbs for. But oddly enough I'm having a hell of a time selling the blue pvp belts. Also the tank belt seems to sell much faster than the dps chest piece. Next time I get some orbs I'll craft the tanking chest and see how that goes. Though I'm not too pressed because once easy epics are available the price of truegold will likely follow the crystals down in price. Not nearly as much of a drop because crafted epics always have their place, but enough that it makes me worry.

Over the weekend I sold yet ANOTHER mechano hog for 17k! This is definitely getting to be fun.

Since I started crafting the JC gear and selling the rares that proc I've had to shuffle who does what gems again. I've moved the purples over to the potato and make a few more gem bags. WTB 32 slot gem bags dammit! Dear god when epic gems come out I'm going to need a whole banker dedicated to handling them.

Random thought. On Saturday I sold several SETS of twink enchants. By sets I mean one enchanted scroll for every slot that can take an enchant. This also includes several extra fiery and crusader enchants. I sold several of stealth, 4 stats, crusader, spellpower everything. Strange coincidence for that many to sell on the same day to different people.

Also gems are really starting to drop in price. Reds and all sub 100 and the rest are in the 20-50 range but metas are still holding strong at 200 and up. However there are a few assorted caster cuts that fetch a good price most of the time. Looking forward to the influx of gear with the heroics to give the market a little boost.

And as my final note for this week, I'm branching out with my smithing markets to include the pvp plate caster gear. I have a ton of volt water and nothing to use them on so I might as well give this a shot. They're typically all over 100g which is a 50g profit before the AH cut so even a few sales will make it worth my while. With leg armors that use them being nigh worthless 5/7 days the water piles up fast with nothing to craft with it.

Thanks for stopping by!

Sunday, March 27, 2011

New heroics = Profit

I briefly mentioned in my random thoughts entry the other day about the new heroics being able to be ran multiple times per day. This one fact is going to have a massive and immediate effect on many different markets and especially the high end markets. For some of you this could spell the end of your niche markets, but for others it could mean the gates are opening on several brand new markets. I gotta admit that I'm always so fascinated by the butterfly effect on the AH.

Expensive enchants.
This is the big one so I'll get it out of the way first. Since maelstorm crystals are too expensive for most people there isn't a large demand for these on a scroll. The second reason this market isn't around is because over half of the server is in blues and if it weren't for the new heroics, they would stay that way the entire expansion. Since not even I wouldn't spend 20k on an enchant for a blue weapon, I doubt your average player will either. All of these new purples are worth putting a big enchant on and once everyone has themselves and their alts purple-o-fied they'll all get de'd.

Increased supply with increased demand means a healthy (ish) market. In preparation for this I bought the world drop bracer recipes (which may see a moderate price and/or demand increase) along with the rest of the ones from TH. If you work scrolls, get yourself the bracer enchants as they'll be worth selling very soon.

Last note on this is to expect a slight increase in the price of heavenly shards. All of the high end recipes need several of them and there currently isn't much of a demand for them and most people will be spending their time in the new heroics instead of the "lower tier" ones. So I'm going to stokpile a few extra just to be safe. Who knows the price might go way up or they could just prove a decent flip for some quick gold.


If most gems aren't worth anything on your server expect there to be a huge demand increase as people will be flooding the new heroics and getting their free purples that all need gems. Gems are already a good market, but I understand that they might not be great on some servers so it is a worth while mention. With a recent ban wave of bots and another one coming soon gem prices should inflate on even the worst servers to a level that is worth working in on a regular basis.

And for those of you that have a healthy gem market already you better start to stokpile a week ago! Even if the new heroics are actually hard and the purples aren't raining from the sky you will still see a large increase in demand.

Epic leg armors and spellthreads.
Again some servers might not have a viable market for these. Personally my server barely has one that's worth working with. So for those of you that are worse off start looking into your LW and be prepared. I'll be sure to have at least two full stacks of hides ready to go once the patch hits. As for spell threads, I hope you've been doing your CD each week and at least holding onto the cloth!

Wrath level enchants and armor enhancements.
These are markets which I cannot say with a good degree of certainty which way they'll go so I can't tell you with confidence which way you should lean towards. But I can say this though, if you have a huge stokpile of mats don't worry because the market will still exist for a good amount of time. My main question is just how long will it last as a great money maker like it is today?

I'll still be stokpiling materials, but not nearly as much as I usually do just in case it really tanks on my server. Since the top enchants are more affordable and more gear is worth having them there won't be nearly as much of a demand for these which is what kept the prices up. Meanwhile the low supply will keep the material prices pretty much the same so this market will experience a large change. We'll just have to see if it remains viable.

General purpose gear enhancements.
Though this is also obvious, I would be remiss if I didn't at least mention it. With any large influx of easily acquired gear demand will sky rocket for anything related to it. This means gems, enchants, armors and threads will all see a large increase in rate of sales. In fact the rate of sales may be so high that you'll want to list several times in a day and lower your undercut amount. Though the gear may not flood in this much, but regardless everyone and their brother will be going to the new heroics and getting a few drops.


Thursday, March 24, 2011

Random thoughts #26

Once again I have a ton of random things to talk about that won't fill a whole page so here they are. All in their barely organized glory. Enjoy!

1. I once said that I cannot fathom somebody that truly loves farming. Oh how wrong was I. I read a hall of fame entry of the millionaire's club on warcraft econ about a guy that got there by ONLY farming. This is honestly quite frighting. In it they talk about farming for upwards of 8 hours a day every day. I would kill myself by hour 6. This is just, wow. That's all I can say...without being incredibly insulting that is. I'm sure you can imagine that I'd make up a few new words for this one. Here's a link to the article.

2. I'll be hitting 2 million in about a month and a half. The next logical goal after that would be to be gold capped in the almost literal sense. Have every one of my toons at the 1 million gold cap. In their own guild with the guild bank capped at 1 million as well. That equates to 24 million on a single realm. At a rate of 100k per week that means about 60 months. Fuck that shit! I honestly don't think there is an actual goal for me to have at all that's gold related. Thoughts?

3. I wrote a while ago about how the vendor value of blues that drop in heroics can be higher than the AH price of the shards quite often. Well cata has been out for a while and prices have dropped accordingly. On my server shards are anywhere from 15-20g each so the vendor value of basically any weapon is higher. The same goes for a few plate chest pieces, so make sure you check the tool tip before you hit DE. Remember a few gold here and there adds up quite fast.

4. I finally found where you can learn how to make glyph of colossal smash. It's boe sold from the scribe vendor in TH after you do the quest chain. It must be a semi recent change because I was there about a month ish ago to buy a jawbone or some such and didn't see it there. I even made it a point to check out what they sold just in case there was some potential for vendor goodies.

5. According to a blue quote from mmo-champion you can do the new heroics in 4.1 as much as you like. They'll be in their own section of the dungeon finder so even if you get saved to one you can re-que for a random "zandalari tribe" heroic indefinitely. My guess is that they'll end up settling at around 1000 gold on my server.

6. Is the end coming for wrath enchanting scrolls? Since you'll be able to run the new Zul heroics as much as you want crystals will be flooding into the market constantly making the top end enchants far more affordable to everyone. The incredibly high prices are what kept the wrath enchanting market afloat for the most part so with them being available for a good price how much longer will this one last? Personally I see the profits from wrath scrolls dropping off by a very significant amount.

Because of that I'm going to slow down my stokpile of these mats since the patch is due out soon. I'll mostly be buying what I need as I need it just in case the market completely crashes. I doubt that it will be completely destroyed, but it won't be such huge profits for sure.

7. Here's an idea for a high risk high profit flip. With people being nervous about maelstrom crystals and the ease of maxing out weekly valors some are taking to jumping ship early. Just the other day I saw a few people selling crystals for 1k each when they're normally 2-3k on AH. So it might be worth throwing a post into trade now and then that you're buying them for half-ish the going rate. Who knows, you might get some easy money.

Thanks for stopping by!

Learn from your fortunes

Today is a simple entry about the fortunes you find when you open the mysterious fortune cards. They're mostly simple and silly things, but a lot can relate to the AH. When you look at them from a different perspective you'll see that a lot of them contain little nuggets of wisdom here and there.

That being said I've pulled out a few that seem to relate to the AH game along with my thoughts on how you should interpret them. Again these are just small tips and the main thing that you should take away from this is that you always have to look at things differently to truly be great at playing the AH. It's all about your perspective.

"You might have better luck with another fortune."
Keep trying new things! If one market turns out to be mediocre or just too time consuming for you, you might have better luck with another one. And just because one isn't great does not mean it is therefore bad. Weigh the pros and the cons against one another and make your decision if you should look for a fortune elsewhere.

"You really should've looted that spider."
Loot the mobs! When you're out doing dailys or leveling loot every last mob that you kill, it will add up extremely fast. Besides you never know when you'll get a rare recipe or a handful of greens from a day's worth of questing.

"Many raid wipes are in your immediate future."
You WILL make mistakes and you WILL lose gold. Nobody walks into the AH game knowing everything. Even if you've read every post on every gold blog out there you still won't know it all until you get out there and do it. However you need to accept the fact that you're going to mess up somewhere along the lines. You need to be aware and expect it so that it happens less likely. And also when it does it will only effect your total gold and not your playing.

"Find beauty in ordinary things. Vendor them for cash."
The vendors are your friends. Not just because of the goodies they sell us to sell on the AH for 100g but for letting you take advantage of people that are far too lazy or stupid to look at a tooltip. From gems to blue heroic drops, if you can't AH it then you can vendor it. Let nothing go to waste.

"He who fights an army is a martyr; he who fights five is elite."
Just replace the word army with market and you'll get the gist of it. If you can run an entire market day and night you're good, if you can do 5 you're leet sauce. If you can get to the point where you're working in several large scale markets at once you'll hit a million gold in no time.

"The beginning of wisdom is to desire it. The end of wisdom is to theorycraft."
Gaining wisdom begins with your search for it. You read and experience and you learn all of the ins and outs of the AH. Once you've reached that point and you begin to theory craft wisdom has come to an end and you are now gaining knowledge. Something new and different that you couldn't find anywhere else because nobody else is in your exact situation. You have to figure out a ton of things on your own before you are truly wise and knowing of all of the different facets of your market and server.

"Life is short; you should take more chances."
Simply put if you don't take a risk you'll be mining and doing dailys for the rest of your life. Even cutting a single gem to sell is a risk, you just need to learn and experience to make informed decisions. Look at how fast things sell and what the entry cost is and decide if it could be worthwhile for you.

"All that glitters is not gold. But you can sell it for gold most of the time."
Everything has a price. As an up and coming AH baron it is your job to identify which parts of this everything is worth selling on a regular basis. It can be as simple as seeing that truesilver rods have gone up and nobody else is selling them or going all out and shuffling ore. Whichever it is that should be your primary focus.

"You're going to be rich!"
If you stay consistent and don't get scared off easily you certainly will be in time. Persistance is the key here, a million gold may be far off but that doesn't mean you can't do it. It isn't a question of if, but a question of when.

Thanks for stopping by!

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Key Ingredients

With every expansion and patch release with large AH effects there's going to be a different set of professions that work extremely well together. I don't mean in the old school meaning of leather working and skinning work together to craft "free" gear. I refer to the large amount of synergy that you can get just by having access to certain professions to both cut down on material costs and greatly increase the amount of markets you can work with. To really set up a large empire on the AH you'll need at least one of these listed pairs on your own toons, but the more you have the faster you can hit the gold cap.

Today I'll be covering what I feel are the most potent profession combinations to have as your disposal. Each section I will go over what will work well weather you're a millionaire, just starting out, or somewhere in between. Just remember that the more gold you have the more you can make and, as always, YMMV.

Jewel crafting + Alchemy
Taking care of what is in my opinion the best profession combo first. When certain rare gems are high in price you have the option to xmute anything that you need. Then there's the obvious meta gem xmutes which sell great raw as they do cut. The meta xmutes gives you another option to move all of the common gems you get from prospecting. With JC you can sell the appropriate common gems and xmute meta gems to stokpile for when they're good to sell while making some extra cash from cut rare gems.

Key Abilities:
- Transmute shadowspirit diamond
- Prospecting
- Rare gem transmutes

Jewel crafting + Enchanting
This one is fairly simple, but no less potent. You don't have to cut gems to make a profit from JC as you can use it to fuel your enchanting markets. You use your JC to craft a ton of leveling gear and use your enchanter to DE it into raw materials. The materials can then be sold as is or you can get into the scrolls. Personally I have good luck flipping GCE's late at night because they tend to spike up 20-30g then before they go back down to the normal price range. Using 3x carnelian to make the spikes to DE into GCE's can save you up to 20g per essence that you use on a scroll. Needless to say this is a HUGE advantage over somebody that doesn't have this capability available.

Key Abilities:
- Disenchant
- Carnelian spikes
- Assorted crafted greens

Blacksmithing/Engineering + Mining
This is the only crafting/gathering combo you'll see in this list, and as you'd expect, it's not because you can farm the materials on a single toon. It's because the ability to smelt your own bars is a very potent and very underestimated method of cutting material costs. On my server bars sell for 6-8g each while the ore sells for 2-3g each which means that if you can AFK smelt a bunch of ore you are only paying 4-6g per bar. With pvp gear needing upwards of 15 bars to craft that can save you up to 60 gold per piece.

Also this gives you the ability to play the material conversion game with the bars using any excess that you may come across when you're busy building a stokpile. You are doing that aren't you?

Key Abilities:
- Smelt Elementium
- Ebonsteel belt buckles
- Boe crafted gear

As for the professions by themselves, they all have their pros and cons. Alchemy, enggy, and smithing can make some gold here and there on their own, but nothing astounding. BS does well with the buckles and crafted gear while alchemy has to rely on it's CD which is rapidly going down in value. Meanwhile JC and enchanting are absolute powerhouses on making profits all by themselves, so suffice to say if you want to make it big you'll be needing them both.

The rate of sales for gems are just so insane this expansion. Being able to supply yourself with alchemy while turning your excess commons into mats for scrolls takes the synergy of those three professions on the AH to a much higher level than any other.

Thanks for stopping by!

Monday, March 21, 2011

Report: 3-22

Yes it's that time again. Today's the day of resets, updates, and weekly collections. Here's my weekly report of what I've been selling and in what markets. I also give a few notes on them with up to date market observations in addition to the weekly profit from everything combined. As always, numbers and bottom lines come first.

Previous week gold total: 1,216,000
Total sales: 295,000
Weekly profit: 39,000
Current gold total: 1,255,000

Profits from MySales:

Gems, LW, & misc:

Yellow, blue, meta, common gems:

Tailoring & vendor pets (and assorted glyphs):

Enchanting & smithing:

Engineering & mining:

Has not been a good week for yours truly. I spent the last half of the week wracked with migraines and was basically bed ridden. And when I get them not only is the pain nightmarish, my vision completely goes to shit. So naturally I wasn't able to work the AH too often.

Also the numbers from my sales aren't entirely correct. I accidentally disabled it towards the end of the week and didn't catch it until the following morning. So I'm missing several thousand from each of my primary markets.

Detailed Recap:
I spent a ton this week on non AH related stuph. I geared out my pally for tanking again in purples and good blues so that cost a pretty a nice 34k. I also found THREE of the world drop enchanting recipes that I'm missing which literally cost almost as much as the gear. I got riding skill to gloves, restore mana prime to bracer, and lesser block for shield which now gives 10 parry rating. Naturally I made a few scrolls out of them to see if they'll sell without any advertisement for an acceptable price on each. I'm now down to only 9 more with all of the world drops being from TBC not counting the ones that aren't in game. Here's to hoping AQ 40 is kind to me next reset.

To top off all of that spending, I fleshed out the rest of my main's bank and personal bags with illusion normal bags and other worldly enchanting bags. Still not enough room.

Mechano hog! I sold two! And not only did it sell, it sold for double the materials + vendor goodies. It took a while, but all I had to do was advertise it in trade when I was banking from that toon. I'd handle my normal business, link it in trade and simply say "-item link- for sale." Since nobody else is putting these on the AH I'll be keeping one around. I had one in my bags for a while and didn't advertise even though people wanted one crafted, but then I realized that it isn't the sort of thing that you'll typically find on the AH. Hence the need for a short advert in trade chat.

Pic related, me not giving away free shit.

I had to go and buy another dozen or so stacks of croco meat to make some strength food. Thank god for the chef's hat or I don't think I'd be working this market. And I once again had to buy another handful of copper rods from the vendor to sell 20 yards away for an absurd mark up.

Gems have still been treating me very well. With a moderately steady supply of ore to prospect and cheap raws on the AH this market isn't going anywhere for a long time. Not until epics are released at least. This is not a market that one can own or control to any real extent if you ask me. There is such a huge supply of ore and gems and it has the demand to match it. It is quite the healthy market and that means that it's rather easy for anybody to work, especially since the entry cost is just a few days of time to get some gem designs.

And after spamming trade off and on for a week or two I finally found somebody to do blade ward! I got 7 scrolls made and if I had the mats I'd have them make another 20. About time!

On the topic of enchanting, the price of maelstorm crystals are already going down in anticipation of the coming patch. How are they looking on your server?

However LW and tailoring has been in the toilet or weeks with anything from cata. All of the rare leg enchants and even the epic ones are always under material prices. I have no clue how this can be maintained considering the prices on leather have not budged a single gold since I started to stokpile all of it. The only possible explanation is people farming leather for free. While sure it's good money after TB there is no way the money is THAT good. However that doesn't explain why the tailoring goods are so low.

I tried another few new things this week. I went into cobalt gear and embersilk bags. Sadly the cobalt gear was a fail and the embersilk bags, just like frostweave in wrath, are barely BARELY over material costs. So one was a loss and the other is just plain pointless.

Also one of the key steps in my AH method is doing two cancel/post cycles in a single session. This came up several times throughout the week with the mechano hogs. Somebody else started to list one and after I'd advert it in trade and sign off, they'll hop on and undercut me. 20-30 minutes later I get back on the enggy banker and undercut them again but without saying anything in trade this time. It's such a simple thing to do but it works wonders to make people think you're off for the day.

An enchanted scroll that I've noticed is selling amazingly well as of late is weapon: exceptional agility. It's the WotLK version of a 1h agility enchant that takes 4 shards and 4 eternal air. The reason is that the best enchants are still out of the price range for most, but there are still better alternatives. Both hurricane and avalanche are rated (much) higher so I can only assume that without them being stupid and/or lazy this must be selling to people that want to level in style.

Leveling in style is what I refer to as putting high quality enchants on all of your gear as you go from 1-85 along with picking up the best boe blues that you can find along the way. This is definitely something I'm going to try with my girl later on because it does seem like a lot of fun. Lets be honest, full heirloom gear with full blues and enchants? Come on man, shit will just fall over when you so much as look at it! So it'll be fun to faceroll leveling once again and not have to worry about money and just splurge. I haven't done that for a leveling toon since my DK which is a little depressing now that I think about it.

I also sold something the other day that I made on a whim. It was a scroll of enchant weapon winter's might. It adds 7 frost spellpower which sold for 80g. That was an odd choice since there's other scrolls up that are better and cheaper. Regardless of that I made a few more and hope to see a couple more sales.

I also picked up a ton of cheap etheral ink so I made a round of those glyphs to be sold on my tailor. I figured why not because those glyphs tend to sell rather quickly. And handling 100 auctions in glyphs isn't that annoying at all so there's no real reason not to. And on the note of that banker, I noticed why my income was so low on them. My dumbass has been completely forgetting to refresh my stock of vendor pets! Fail! I was completely out of everything except albino snakes so of course the income was low.

Thanks for stopping by!

Sunday, March 20, 2011

My Specifics

NOTE: I have officially been (re) inducted into the warcraft econ hall of fame. You can check out their interview with me here.

I get a lot of people asking me either in email (address is over yonder -->) or by rolling a lvl 1 on my server to chat. So today I'll answer, at least in part, these questions with a bit more detail than I typically give. After all it's hard to give the same 3 paragraph answer to the same question multiple times. That and wow needs a spell checker because my typing is fail.

Q: How much do you actually stokpile, Stokpile? (In reference to obscure materials)

A: Absolutely all of them. And unless I'm flooding the bags of the associated crafter I don't stop buying anything that's in my price range. If I won't pay more than 10g for something and I see a stack up for 9g 99s 99c I'm going to buy it. If you want a really good explanation of how much I stokpile, read the entry with the obvious title How much to stokpile.

Q: How often and/or when do you post auctions?

A: First my preferred times to do a cancel/post on all of my bankers is at 11am and 11pm server time. I catch most of the afternoon and post raid crowds at these times so I try to hit them when I can, but I'm not always able to due to work and sleep and binge drinking. That being said, I like to change them up to something completely random as much as I'm able to while still being in the general time frame. Hell sometimes I only list once a day, life can be funny that way sometimes.

Also if I happen to have 5 minutes to kill, I'll hop onto a totally random banker and do a cancel/post on them. Sometimes I'll just post the spares that I have in the bag and not cancel anything. If I'm doing heroics as DPS I'll cancel and post while I wait for the que to come up as well. Basically if there's a time frame where I have nothing pressing to do and have no work that I can accomplish in those few minutes I'll post some auctions.

Like an old store manager once told me while I was working at a deli when I was 19, "If you've got time to lean you've got time to clean." In other words if you have the time to pretend to look awesome and idle in front of the bank, you've got time to do some auctions. Wasted time is wasted money.

Q: ...comparing my AH methods to my RL personality.

A: Ok not really a question I get asked often, but worth while to include. I've spoken briefly before about personality types and how they effect your AH game. When you're able to identify these things on a conscious level you can work to strengthen them if they're helpful or lessen/remove them if they are not.

And by "on a conscious level" I mean that you can actually say it out loud and not feel silly because you are fully aware that it is fact. IRL I spend my dollars mostly the same as I spend my gold, wisely. If I don't need something then I don't get it unless I'm quite well off at the time. If a good amount of money happens to come in I'll treat myself to going out to a fancy sushi restaurant. The same goes for mechano hogs and vial of the sands for two toons. For the AH I try to price things at a reasonable level while still trying to get as much profit as I can both in game and irl.

Q: How much you make on an average day from (market name)?

A: I can't really give any exact figures because I only tally things up once a week. But I can give a rough estimate for a few markets. For gems I make about 10-16k per day. It depends on the competition campers and the day of the week. Enchanting makes 8-12 a day when combined with smithing which might be 1-3k per day extra. Smithing mostly depends on if I sell any pvp gear that day. Engineering gets me a bit under 1k per day with the occasional 4k day when a lot of mini pets happen to sell.

Q: What were things like when you first started playing the AH game?

A: I started working the AH with about 5k in gold and a handful of raw gems in my bank. At the beginning it was mostly selling cut rare gems in wrath as my first serious market. I had a lot of the cuts already from the dailys so I'd just buy some ore to prospect or cheap gems and cut them. I was a casual seller for a long time until I had all of the expensive boe tank gear I was saving for. Then I got into glyphs after reading gevlon's blog on the inscription business and it was all downhill from there. I got into enchanting and BS and next and then that led to branching out into everything I am into today one after another.

That should cover most of the common questions that I get asked. If there's any other random factoids you're curious about just post a comment and I'll do my best to answer them.

Thanks for stopping by!

Thursday, March 17, 2011


Today's post is about being an absolutely ruthless shark on the AH. What I write about today I only do when somebody is really on my nerves or is trying to muscle their way into an important market of mine. It happens the most with gems because ever since wrath everybody and their mother seems to have a JC. It happens daily with glyphs but I stopped caring about that bit once you couldn't trade IotS down. But more importantly it's about the fact that you MUST care about your competition.

Let me be clear though, I am not advocating running around being a dick to everyone that wants to sell 5 gems a week to cover repairs. I'm talking about goblin against goblin. Serious competitors that are trying to run you out of your own markets and not some random dude trying to make some quick coin. If your MO is to ensure that absolutely nobody but you can make gold on the AH then stop reading please.

This is about business, it's not about getting personal. You may not like your customers, but they are your customers none the less so you have to respect them. The dude working in a diamond mine being whipped so he works faster helped put that ring on your wife's finger. The guy that spends a weekend flying in circles around Uldum put your bank account to what it is.

And don't forget that you have to let some people make gold on the AH or they won't be sending any your way. After all, how can they afford your awesome purple shiny if they can't sell anything in the first place? Defend your markets but don't try and make them unusable for the casual seller. They're just as important to the economy as you are. That being said, lets move right along.

First here's a quick tip I thought was both hysterical and greatly practical from a commenter.

Crusard said...

"I have another, slightly more aggressive, way to monitor competition. If I see a someone undercutting me often I have a macro I use to "annoy" them (it is a full block of {x} symbols) till they put me on ignore. Then I can see them and they can't see me. This will not net you any sales but it will make your presence undetectable by your competition (at least your online status)."

Some people only care about their time and their profits when they work the AH. If this is your primary concern as well, then you have failed! You absolutely MUST consider your competitions profits, supply, habits, etc. Your fun comes from collecting gold from the mail and what everyone else does has a direct effect on that. I want to make as much gold as possible and especially in as many different ways as possible. I love exploring new markets and new niches and when I find one that's out of the ordinary I'll defend it to my last copper so I can keep having fun with it.

I am very willing and capable to undercut you by 50g per gem even if that puts me down to material prices and below. I don't care, this is my house, this is my market. And you, You're only visiting.

One thing that I do is I always cancel my auctions before I relist more. I do this to hide the stokpile of goods that I have so that some people are a bit more likely to invest a good chunk of their gold into it. Then I'll stop canceling and just list more gems. And more and more and more! I'll keep listing for 48 hour periods until I have two full pages worth of the same gem up. I know you're thinking right now "But Stok, won't you lose a ton on deposits?" Of course I will, but I don't care because I can afford it. The point here is not making money per sé, but to ensure that I can continue making the same profits later on.

Think about it. If you saw that somebody was willing to list 20 of every gem even down to -your- material costs what would you be thinking? The message that you're trying to convey here is that you have a mass amount of things that you can sell in many different markets and don't care if you lose money. I don't care if I lose money not because I can afford it, but because I want to ensure that you make zero.

And once you list close to or at material costs I'll buy up every last thing that you have leaving you with even less gold than you started with. This leaves a very bad taste in the mouths of the competition and makes them far less likely to try and move in on another market that you own.

When you lose thousands, hell even hundreds of gold in a single market you're not very likely to risk that again. Unless you're swimming in gold and can afford it. Suffice to say when somebody tries to take over one of my markets profit becomes a non-issue. Any other day making gold is my bottom line goal, but now it's no longer about the money.

It's territory.

Yes the AH is mostly about being clever and resourceful, but it is just as much about standing your ground. Are gems making you a killing each week? Don't give them up! Don't let anybody take over a single gem cut that you can do! Take no prisoners! And above all else, do not make a deal to "share" the market because it's only a matter of time before they go back on their word. They may be reasonable, they may be just like you. But when money is involved, real or otherwise, it changes people.

People can bitch all they want about high prices but they'll never sell a flask for 50% of the material costs "just to be a nice guy." And just the same people can piss and moan all day about being undercut by 200g. That doesn't stop them from buying the cheapest thing they can find even when it's because "some asshole" undercut "some nice cool guy eh" by 200.


So what's the lesson to be learned here? Don't let somebody take over just to "be a cool nice dude." That's going to cut your income in half. And if you only want enough to be independent then you probably wouldn't be reading this in the first place, that's not who I'm writing this for. If you share the market and do not stand your ground when serious competition shows up you're not going to get to the gold cap until level 100.

Thanks for stopping by!

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

My Crew

Short-ish entry today just for fun today. A lot of gold bloggers out there like to make a post about who their toons are and what professions they have access to. Meanwhile the most I have said is I love my DK and when it comes to professions I just say "all of them." So today I'll give you all a quick once over of who I have running what.

The bankers

The orc, the myth, the legend himself. He was actually made to reference my original banker named "I look Gross" on my first server that I played on. He handles all of the gems, LW goods, and any random things I come across that need to be sold like world drop boe's. I spent a good 50k on assorted "worthless" vanity items when I hit my first gold cap. I did that just for the hell of it and to get a good laugh on being able to waste so much gold and not be effected by it in the least. The most expensive item were ruby shades at 10k or so which are no longer available in game.

This was formerly the banker that handled all of my orange colored rare gems and epic gems during wrath. They were originally created because leather and all of the other rare gems took up so much space that I'd have 200 mails for Stokpile and that would take far too much time to collect and post.

This cutsie belf rogue handles the glyph machine whenever it's up and running. I made them to level with a friend of mine who shortly after I made them stopped playing wow much. So rather than waste a character slot I turned them into my banker. Their entire bag and bank slots are filled with inscription bags and jam packed with glyphs at all times for the odd day I feel like selling glyphs.

The crafters

Formerly my main and originally known as Daemonym. He was my first toon back in 2.4 of TBC and has been main specced tank ever since. I got burnt out of tanking in late wrath and have since regulated him down to being just another crafter. I do the bulk of my purchasing on him to keep track of how much I've spent and craft all of my gems and LW goodies on him. Before all of that first he had enggy for the t6 goggles and enchanting. Then I changed from enchanting to JC once I hit 80 and later on dropped enggy for LW.

LW was an odd profession for a plate class for a while but I chose it because, at the time, there was no stamina enchant or otherwise viable tank enchant for bracers. So I dropped enggy from him and power leveled LW just to get a little more stamina and this was back when I had to do dailys and farm for hours to afford anything. He has all of my mounts and achievements on him and I've spent a great deal of money on upgrading his gear to top levels when I was actively tanking with him.

My beloved read headed DK frosty girl. She enjoys long walks in the frozen wastes of Northrend and throwing ice cubes at gnomes. Her favorite color is sage green. I always loved playing this toon since I first made them and they have been DW frost since wrath was released. I always loved DW classes but never felt like leveling a rogue or being that squishy. The DK gave me survival, DW, and another pair of open professions. They started as BS/Mining and once BS was maxed I dropped mining for enchanting for the ring enchants. Little did I know it would be my favorite market.

This toon also doubles as my ench/bs banker as shuffling around all of those mats can be an absolute nightmare. So I rarely have more than 4 bag spots open on them even with two ench bags and 26 spot bags. They're dual specced as a tank just so I can get an easy que for heroics. With this toon, just like my paladin when he was my main, I spare no expense when it comes to gear.

My warrior that I made just to play with my girl. Through all of wrath I hated this toon and just couldn't stand warrior dps or tanking compared to every other class out there. They were quickly regulated to crafting and only have had the professions of inscription and xmute spec alchemist. They do quite well with transmutes and are slowly getting their scribble skills up from making forged documents. Though they're great fun to dps as now, I don't think I'll be playing them much anyway.

I have recently made this the toon that handles all of my meta, yellow, blue, and common gems on the AH. The main reason for this is because I was having to make 2-3 trips to the mail box with Stokpile so this has cut down my AH time even considering loading times.

An old alchemist/herbalism DK that I created solely as an experiment in the flask market. They were elixir specced and if you've read this blog for long, you'll know that they didn't go anywhere with that. I have since deleted them to make room for other toons.

The frost mage-ing dead girl. I did the bulk of my purchasing on this toon during wrath since teleport is just so OP. But since the entire army of the horde tends to hang around in Org these days that's not really necessary anymore. They handle my tailoring and vendor pet businesses with some occasional skinning after TB ends. I set their hearth to the Storm spire in out lands so I have easy access to the rare item vendors there and can easily portal to Dalaran for more of those pets when it's needed.

The enhancement shammy I made to run with a friend of mine at the end of wrath. I loved leveling this toon and never had an easier time doing it. With heals, damage shields, totems, oodles of burst nothing stood in my way for long. They handle all of the smelting and engineering markets and do a good job of it. If I were to have a second main, this would be the one.

The disc priest from outerspace! This was the toon that I leveled and make all rich and purple from the ground up. It was my first side project and it was a blast! They started with enchanted boa gear and nothing else. This toon has no effect on my primary horde side markets as I just don't have the interest in cross faction trading. They started with inscription and herbalism since you have to farm in order to get some start up funding. I later dropped herbalism in favor of enchanting and farmed up all of the world drop enchant recipes that I could. In two months they were in full boe epics, epic gems, epic flying plus mount, top end enchants, and 50k in cold hard cash.

The simple blondie banker that handles the business end of the goat's business. She also looks astoundingly like my girl IRL.

And that's my entire team of bankers and assembly line workers, I hope you found it at least a little bit interesting. It's always nice to take a short stroll down memory lane I think. It also helps to remind you of where you started at and why you're doing all of this in the first place. Like I always say, you need to have a reason that's more than just gold.

Thanks for stopping by!

Durations, cuts, and deposits

Today's entry is about three simple factors on the AH that most tend to overlook or outright ignore: deposit, AH cut, and duration.

Every time you go to post an auction you lose a few gold for the deposit as we all know. The amount of the deposit is based on two things, the vendor price of the item and the duration of the auction. Shamelessly stealing from here's the math behind it on your faction owned AH. MSV is short for Merchant Sale Value.

Amount Received = Winning Bid - Cut + Deposit
(in Faction AH) = Winning Bid*(0.95) + Deposit

Deposit (12hr) = 15% of MSV
Deposit (24hr) = 30% of MSV
Deposit (48hr) = 60% of MSV

When you cancel an auction that has a bid in place, you will lose your deposit. You will also be charged a fee equal to the house cut of the current bid.

Cancellation Fee = Deposit + Cut

Ok lets get the obvious things out of the way first. The longer you post an auction for, the more it's going to cost as a deposit. When you sell an item your deposit is refunded, but if you cancel it or it expires that money is lost. For cheaper items like scrolls or glyphs you can safely ignore this as you can lose maybe a single gold coin by the end of the week at the worst.

The plus side to 48 hour auctions is fairly simple, you don't have to collect the mail or list more items nearly as often. And with the shorter durations you don't lose as much gold on unsold auctions but have to work the AH more often. Aside from those basic facts, there's a lot more to consider when deciding on a duration. Like I keep on rambling on about, you have to find your own balance.

But when you sell something like gems these deposits are a legitimate concern that you should pay attention to. It doesn't matter if they're raw or cut, common or rare or epic. On average you're looking at around 1g per gem so when you list 60 gems that's a noticeable amount that's thrown in the gutters. And if you do a cancel/post more than once in that day then that turns into 120g that you've lost. Granted that's if not one gem sells and you don't get the deposit back, but every item you list is a gamble. If it doesn't sell you lose money. Period.

If something has a high rate of sale like red intellect gems or nether bags, list several of them for 12-24 hour auctions. I always do at least 1 day auctions because I might not be around to relist when I get undercut or when they expire personally. For example, nether bags I list in sets of 8 and int gems (and a few others) I list 6 at once.

Most of my auctions I list in pairs for 24 hours since I do a cancel/post twice a day. For less common sales like assorted meta gems or leg armors, you don't want to list too many at once because that will siphon your profits pretty fast with lost deposits. There's countless items that you can sell on the AH and they all need their own special attention. However when there's a serious camper about I'll list for 48 hours to ensure that they can't make any more profit than what I set the price at unless I sell out of something.

With the deposit cost in mind I always add 15% to my threshold to ensure that I lose as little money as possible. I typically sell any given item after listing it three times so at worse I make my money back on the materials for whatever sells.

Because of all of this you need to find your personal balance. Think about what items tend to sell the fastest as in back to back sales. What items tend to sell out in a day? In a week? What only sells one or two per week? To find this balance you can closely relate it to your undercut values.

Thanks for stopping by!

Monday, March 14, 2011

Report: 3-15

Yes it's that time again. Today's the day of resets, updates, and weekly collections. Here's my weekly report of what I've been selling and in what markets. I also give a few notes on them with up to date market observations in addition to the weekly profit from everything combined. As always, numbers and bottom lines come first.

Previous week gold total: 1,090,000
Total sales: 242,000
Weekly profit: 126,000
Current gold total: 1,216,000

Profits from MySales:

Gems, LW, & misc:

Yellow, blue, meta, common gems:

Tailoring & vendor pets:

Enchanting & smithing:

Engineering & mining:

Another week and another round of 2 week sales experiments to cover. Read on! And at this rate I'll break 2 million gold in no time flat.

Detailed Recap:
Ok just as last week I'll lead off with all of the new random enchants and crafted items I've been trying out and how
well they've done.

Enchant weapon - blood draining: Over two weeks I've sold only the one so I won't be having anymore of these made. As expected though it's counter part blade ward has been doing great. Removed.

Rare quality NR leg armors - I've only sold one of the dps versions and none of the tanking versions. I suppose there just isn't a market for these on my server. Removed.

Enchant weapon - Major Intellect: Yet another world drop from TBC that can be easily farmed off of these mobs. This one has been doing relatively well considering the small target market. So far I've sold two of them, one per week and that's good enough for me for an old enchant. Especially since it's only sold to people leveling I would assume. Standard inventory.

Enchant weapon - Soulfrost: By god one of these actually sold! I was honestly expecting this to be a loss but lo and behold one sold just a few days after I listed it for double the material costs. I'd keep this as standard inventory just for the heck of it if primal water was a bit easier to come by. Regardless I'll add it to the list but only craft it when I can.

Enchant gloves - superior agility: This is another twink enchant that drops from AQ but can also be gotten from the keepers of time at exalted. It takes 2 primal airs to make which is the down side, but the tup side is I've sold both of the scrolls I've made so far the night they were crafted. Standard inventory.

Pack of endless pockets: Yes this is the profession bag that I always recommend against crafting due to people leveling up LW and dumping them. But I decided to make a few with all of these people crafting DM cards. And to my surprise they sell and very well, in fact they usually fetch 180g on the AH. Regardless of the reason they make me some easy money and that makes me smile. Standard inventory.

Enchant gloves - Major spellpower: Yes this is yet another enchant from TBC that I'm trying out. And yes it is yet another that is selling well, don't ask me why I don't have the faintest idea. In any case, the semi hard part is finding the primal mana needed for it, but they're is such low demand and gotten so easily while questing in the netherstorm that the prices are usually cheap. Standard inventory.

On the JC front I've once again increased how many red gems I list. I'm now listing 8 int gems up from 6, these are almost impossible to keep around. On the flip side I've barely had any sales for green gems outside of puissant cuts. Along with the red int gems, any if the purple and orange caster cuts are also selling at a huge pace. One day this week I sold an entire stack of int gems in a single day. There is no reason to undercut by more than a gold or two for this market because they sell that incredibly fast. And on that note, here's something strange that my girl noticed the other day.

Somebody bought 3 of her raw meta gems from the AH for 230g each. Moments later that same person listed 3 agile cuts for 110g each. Ok so maybe they used those metas for something else? Wrong. They had no other meta cuts up before and the agile ones were the only thing they had up. Either I totally missed something or they totally failed at looking into a market before trying it out.

I've also been taking the time to gain rep with the horde expedition to get the recipe for the mechano hog. Overall the rep grind wasn't bad at all since I was able to do the NR heroics fairly quick since I have a heal button on my engineer. That and having a nifty arcane mage help me blow things up before I died was a nice boost. I was already halfway through revered from questing thanks to all of the other factions counting as rep for them. I've seen numerous people asking in trade for somebody to craft it and vial of the sands has been selling very well I've heard so I figured I'll give it a shot. If nothing else I'll have a passenger mount for my DK which will come in handy for AQ runs.

Since Org is sorta kinda right next to the neutral auction house (portal to Hyjal and then fly over) in Winterspring, or Ratchet if you don't avoid the barrens like the plague, I'm starting to try and sell the enchanted lantern mini pet on there. It's horde only so I should see a sale at some point.

I'm also doing damned good on collecting enchanting recipes. I only have these left:

Two of them are from ulduar and 4 are from AQ 40. The world drops are of course the problem, but I just wish I knew where the lowbie gathering enchants came from now. The raid drops will come eventually even if it's a year from now, but I really want to get the battle master recipe as I wouldn't be surprised if it sells.

I decided to pick up a chopper and vial of the sands for my DK chica for the practical uses. It makes it easy when me and my girl go to very obscure places and I'm reading on wowhead where we need to go. That was a nice 80k-ish sink into my profits which did hurt admittedly.

As a random note I've sold out of strength food and copper rods. And speaking of vendor sold stuff, on a tip from a commenter I decided to sell a few dust of disappearance. I got a few sales that same night which was pretty funny. Though I don't think I'll keep selling them because the deposit is rather high compared to the small profits you make. Totally good for some laughs though!

Towards the weekend I hopped into a raid for Uld 25 and bought the blood drain recipe for 10k. It dropped twice but didn't manage to get the blade warding one which is ironic because it's the one I mainly wanted. On alliance side I see the lesser block recipe up but for 35k, screw that.

Tailoring has been getting lower and lower along with vendor pets so I may just abandon those markets all together aside from dream cloth. All just so I don't have to bounce around toons so damned much every night, if load times weren't so bad this wouldn't be an issue.

As a closing note I've once again increased how many gems I list at a time, I mean damn I can't keep these things up! I sold 12 brilliant rubies in the time it took me to do a speed run of heroic SFK for god's sake and the same thing goes for any of the caster mixed color gems. I am now listing 3 of every gem (meta included) and 10 of every red color, up from 2 and 8 respectively and I also increased how many I keep on hand appropriately.

Thanks for stopping by!

Amigad I'm late!

Sorry all, no post today. Been so busy IRL with work and meetings and so on that I totally forgot to hit post today. I still have plenty written, but didn't want to have an entry up for just half a day as many would likely miss it. Check back tomorrow!

Thanks for stopping by!

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Things change after the cap

I'm not going anywhere! Just in case anybody was worried I was going to close up shop after hitting a million again rest assured I'm not going anywhere.

My motto as of late has mostly been about how gold is exponential. The more you have the more you get and so forth. However when you hit the big time, such as the 200k+ range, you'll see that a few things start to change.

Since hitting a million gold for the second time, I've noticed a handful of things that have changed in how I do business. They have all been seemingly minor things that I started doing and small tweaks to my method ever since that I've only started to realize consciously. I'm going to be covering the small changes I've made since hitting the gold cap that each have some serious implications for my empire of shiny. I'm also going to be talking about this so that if you're working the big time AH game you can be prepared to make a few of these changes yourself if necessary and work them to your personal needs.

First I'm going to give you a wrestling analogy here, strange I know but bear with me. Think of the classic "pin" where guy A is on his back and dude B is resting all of his weight on the guy A's chest. Guy A has to struggle a ton and expel a very large amount of energy to get out. Meanwhile dude B can just shift a little bit more weight onto guy A's chest and calmly relax and keep them held down. In the professional martial arts world if you were to take two fighters of equal skill, discipline and ability and pit them against each other, the one with the weight advantage will usually come out the victor. The same goes for the AH.

Think of this as your business being weighted against an entire empire of gold. If you don't have a ton of loose cash you can still compete, but you'll have to struggle and fight tooth and nail to get higher. And while you're doing that the person that has their fingers in every market can just sigh and lean down a little bit harder.

I've noticed myself doing this in almost every market, even enchanting. I used to shuffle my thresholds around every week or two to make damned sure that I was always making a profit, always in the black and trying to eek every last gold out of my wares as possible. Now that I've hit a million, I just don't care that much. Slowly and piece by piece I have lowered all of my thresholds down to what they'd sell for at 5% over the absolute lowest priced mats I can get. Meanwhile though I keep buying stuff at a rather normal price.

Why do this? Because if anybody wants to work their way into the market they're going to have to struggle like a son of a bitch to get a leg up. You can try and flip sure, but that won't change the fact that I can make 500 more in a moment or buy up everything that's up myself. I'm keeping all material prices at average price or above so that YOU have to pay high end prices and compete with lower cost scrolls.

This makes the market have a steep entry fee both in gold and in time and most people aren't willing to make that kind of investment. Can it still be done? Can somebody work their way into one of my favored markets when I don't care about making a profit? Sure you can, I did it myself with every market I am in now. But I sure as hell won't make it easy.

I've also split up my buying price into two different categories which also effects how much I stokpile. I have my "preferred" buying price and my "shit I'm almost out" price. Using borean leather for example, my preferable buying price is under 20g/stack but if I'm getting low I'll pay up to 50 a stack. This is because I just don't need the gold and I don't have anybody trying to get in on it so there's no need to go balls out buying everything I see. It also significantly cuts down on my purchasing time.

Also I've placed a much lower value on certain markets, primarily nether bags and glyphs. The time required just isn't worth it to me, be it automated or not, as I am not hardcore aiming for 2 million. I'll be there in a few months regardless, but if I worked both of them like I usually do I might get there a week or two sooner. It's not that important to me. That means that a lot of markets and niche markets get opened up to the rest of the server.

Prices will go back to changing wildly because I'm not there to control the flow of materials and crafted items anymore. This is both the good and the bad portions of having an unregulated economy. Imagine if I didn't want a single person to make gold without busting their ass for it? You know it can be done, but I'd likely get hit with the ban hammer if I even cared enough to do that let alone consider it.

With me knowing all of my markets inside and out, experimentation has become a lot more prevalent. If you've been reading my business reports over the last few weeks you'll notice that I've started trying out half a dozen new things to sell every week. It keeps things interesting and there's the constant joy of discovery. Even if I find out that a certain market is a dud, I never knew that before! I am still learning and improving myself (trying to anyways) even though I don't need the gold from a new market. I'm branching out even farther and deeper into sub markets just for the pure fun of it all. For love of the game.

Thanks for stopping by!

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

New or noob? Moron or Uninformed?

If you're a long time reader, you know by now that I'm not as nice a guy as I come off as. If you're a newer reader... I'm not really as nice as I come off as. From me making comments like people who buy heavy leather when they can convert normal for cheaper are mouth breathing, power drooling, inbred halfwits you can get the idea from there. However now that cata has been about for a bit there's a lot of genuinely new players so I feel it's time I gave this subject a visit.

New players simply don't know what's what. They don't know that if they wait till the middle of the week they can sell that stack of wool cloth for triple what they can today. Why don't they know this? Because how would they that's why. They don't know what a proper rotation is and might not even know what a rotation is. For these people there's plenty of resources and now almost all of the in game tool tips are very new player friendly, which I think is a great thing.

Then you have the noobs. These are the people that have been playing since TBC and still don't know that throwing dots on a target that needs to be sheeped is a bad thing. The people that piss and moan about having bad gear being the reason they're doing 4k dps at 85. Simply put, a new player doesn't know any better while a noob has no excuse to NOT know better. Next time you're in a group with somebody that's still new to the game, give them a little slack eh? If they're a tank and aggro is low, give them pointers or references. Don't wig out and rage quit, that's rude and accomplishes nothing. But if they've been a tank since WotLK give them hell!

When it comes to the AH and farming or not to farm here's what I have to say. If you happen to enjoy farming then go for it! If you go and zone out farming before going to bed I have no problem with that. We're cool. If you think that farming ore is the best money maker you have then you are a complete fuckwit! If you have a non gathering profession close to max you have no excuse to be poor what so ever. Unless it's engineering, then I can cut you a break on that one.

If you say that you don't have the time to play the AH but somehow manage to have enough time to farm 9 stacks of ore then you're just an absolute moron. If you say you don't have a decent amount of start up cash then either you can't afford to repair your gear or you're also lazy. You can start making money with only 100g and expand from there. Or if you're truly out of cash then yes you have to farm, but don't go thinking that you need thousands to make thousands or I'll brain you.

The difference is that a new player wants to learn. The game is new and different and has that novelty feel to it. If they need help they go looking for it, but hopefully they learn that trade chat isn't a great source. A noob just doesn't care to learn. Simply put, if you take the time to learn you're not a noob, you're just new. As I've said in the past, merely by reading my blog you're going in the right direction and are not a moron. A noob has no interest in learning or getting better, only looking cooler.

A new player should be allowed to join a raid if they've read about the encounter. Just because you don't have an achievement doesn't mean that you're just another fail baddie. You never know what a person's skill level is until you see it for yourself. Like it's been said a billion times over, gear score item level e-peen does not show skill nor does it even show your potential skill. It just shows how good your gear is. That's all, nothing more.

The moral here is don't look down your nose at people that genuinely don't know better. I wouldn't know much about the AH if somebody hadn't told me. Just as you wouldn't ever think that a vendor sold item would sell on the AH for 10g not even 20 yards away from the buyer. There's many things in the game just as in life that you'll never notice, no matter how obvious, until they're pointed out to you. And that's my goal with this blog, to point out the not so obvious parts of the AH game.

What you can take away from this is that if you're legitimately trying to get better then you're already a step ahead of half your server. This isn't a huge secret, it's just not pointed out to you until you stumble upon my writing. In short, treat people with respect until they prove that they're a noob, not the other way around.

Thanks for stopping by!

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet

NOTE: I'm looking for somebody to confirm where the following enchanting recipes drop. They used to be easily gotten but with cata all of the mobs that dropped them are gone and wowhead doesn't know where to get them at now. I've read a lot but nobody seems to know for sure. The only one I'm kind of sure on is advanced herb from a rare spawn by stonard.

Enchant Gloves - Mining

Enchant Gloves - Advanced Herbalism

Enchant Gloves - Herbalism

Today's entry begins with a brief history lesson. If you were to google the title you will find many websites that are currently being worked on among other things. Lorem ipsum, or lipsum, is place holder text used by designers to give either a web page or a magazine ad the "appearance" of content without having to actually create any. It's a very useful tool to see how a web site would look if it was filled in with sales pitches, explanations, etc. Aside from that, Lipsum is a collection of broken Latin words and phrases from a book called "On the Boundaries of Goods and Evils" by Cicero who was a Roman writer and philosopher in 100 to 50 BC.

The most common phrase that pops up in this broken Latin is "lorem ipsum, quia dolor sit amet, consectetur, adipisci[ng] velit..." with the letters in brackets spelling out the proper Latin word. What this and the rest of the sentence, it roughly translates into is "Nor again is there anyone who loves or pursues or desires to obtain pain of itself, because it is pain, but occasionally circumstances occur in which toil and pain can procure him some great pleasure." As Cicero did, let me give you a trivial example.

I love to drink alcohol, I enjoy both the feeling and the taste of it. But I'm not drinking it now and I do not drink more whiskey or saké than I do soda or coffee. I avoid the PLEASURE of alcohol to avoid the PAIN of a hang over or getting sick. I actively seek the PAIN of carrying 50+ pounds of computer equipment up two flights of stairs so that I can enjoy the PLEASURE of playing warcraft.

Make sense?

Of course by now I'm begging the question "what in the name of Christ and Kraft Macaroni does this have to do with making the wow gold?" The answer is one that I'll drill into your head yet; balance. Moderation. People ask me why I stick it out in a certain market when profits are crappy, campers are everywhere and the damned bots took our jobs. Obviously, working a market for a few copper is quite painful and I am actively seeking this pain. But I'm not after the pain of low profits, I do it to enjoy the pleasure of making thousands every few hours when it ends.

The real question that should be asked here is not why do this, but instead ask for how long should you do this? At what point does the pain of being over worked and under paid in a game in addition to RL with spiraling credit debt no longer become worth the fortune that may (or may not) await in the promised land? The answer can't truly be calculated or placed into a formula to give every reader here a one size wraps around most result. Your answer really boils down to how much you value your time.

On any given day, I value my time on game the same. If I can only be on for two hours in a day I'll just do a cancel/post of my enchanting and BS goods and do the daily heroic. My time is far more precious when there's less available. Even time itself is subject to the laws of supply and demand. The lower the supply of your time is, the greater value you should place on it which you base on how much your time is being "demanded" by a certain action. However when I have a full hour to play on the AH and then go about my business of making the business I value it much

I'll work all of my favorite markets, craft what needs crafting, stokpile another million widgets and then go on my way. What effects how I personally value my time is how active I am. I am one of those people that if you tied me to a chair and forced me to stare at the wall for an hour I'd manage a way to bite off my tongue so I wouldn't have to suffer such inhumane torture. This is why I stopped working glyphs because so much of the time it takes is sitting there hitting a post or cancel macro. And I just cannot stand that! With gems or scrolls it goes by very fast so it's not a large problem. It is at this point the pain that I am seeking, bordem, is no longer worth the pleasure, 5k gold per day, that I am hoping to receive.

The lesson to be learned today is not to leave a market just because it's a little painful today. And on the flip side, avoid the pleasure of making thousands in a new market so that you may in turn also avoid the pain of investing all of your gold and game time.

Thanks for stopping by!

Report: 3-8

Yes it's that time again. Today's the day of resets, updates, and weekly collections. Here's my weekly report of what I've been selling and in what markets. I also give a few notes on them with up to date market observations in addition to the weekly profit from everything combined. As always, numbers and bottom lines come first.

Previous week gold total: 985,000
Total sales: 289,000
Weekly profit: 105,000
Current gold total: 1,090,000

Profits from MySales:

Gems, LW, & misc:

Tailoring & vendor pets:

Enchanting & smithing:

Yellow, blue, meta, common gems:

Engineering & mining:

Another week goes by and another fist full of changes have been made to how I do my reports. And with me experimenting in so many markets last week I'll be giving you my report on what's still hot and what's not.

Detailed Recap:
Alright first thing is first. I've changed around how I do my reports a little once again in my ongoing effort to perfect them. I'm still having issues with auditor only tracking my spending for a week long time frame so I'm just giving up on that. So no more reports on my spending each week, you can just assume that each week the total I spend on assorted things is "a lot." I've also split up my gem bankers across two different toons in the interest of keeping bag space open.

I'm now using my scribe to help with moving all of the shiny rocks in addition to Stokpile. So for this week the total amount sold between the two isn't entirely accurate on a per market basis but the bottom line is correct. I changed this around a few days into the week so Stokpile still has a bunch of sales from them in his mySales section.

Now that that is out of the way, here's the run down on everything that I started looking into lately and how well they've all done.

Enchant weapon - blade ward: The ulduar 25 enchant recipe is still selling well. It was a bad choice when it was current content and is still a bad choice now even if you can't afford the 20k enchant. But it's still selling because it used to be purple and expensive. They're still selling for the same price of 550g now like they were last expansion.

Enchant weapon - blood draining: The same deal with blade ward, but I've only sold one of these this week. I'll keep a close watch on it this week, but if I don't get another sale I'll be removing it from my inventory.

Boe pvp plate gear: Still going amazing, standard inventory. I'm keeping 4 full sets of it crafted in my bank with a few extra of the leg pieces. For some reason the legs are selling twice as fast as the rest of the gear so I suppose there just isn't that many other options to get something decent for this slot. One short note on the other sets of boe gear. I looked at the prices of them over a few days and the standard material costs and none of them seem to be worth crafting at all. I'll keep looking but it doesn't seem to be promising.

Enchant weapon - major spell power: This is another bop recipe from TBC that's easy to farm up from these mobs. I got it and made a pair to throw on the AH. A few days later they have both sold along with another towards the end of the week. Standard inventory.

Beer-basted crocolisk strength food: I crafted 4 stacks of these and sold them all in a few days for a nice profit. Standard inventory, works great with a chef's hat.

Enchant chest - stats: This is a simple trainer taught enchant that gives you +3 stats to chest instead of the world drop 4 stats. I had to farm ZF for a couple runs to grab some shards, but it definitely paid off and I sold 3 of them for over 150g each. It's a very nice alternative if you can't find the world drop or have no luck finding cheap LBS's to use. Standard inventory.

Enchant boots - Assassin's step and Lava walker: Just like the bracer enchants, these were a fail. I'll most likely sue them on my own shoes once I get a nice pair. I did manage to sell one of the though. I'll revisit the high end market once prices crash with 4.1

Ok that takes care of that.

Since hitting a million gold I decided to splurge on maelstorm crystals and picked up the few recipes from the vendor just so that I don't have that on my mind anymore. That was a hefty chunk of change dropped in a matter of moments.

I picked up a very large stokpile of pyrium again so it seems the bots aren't going away for a while. I am sitting on 2k ore and only using it as it is needed. Still hoping to get epics out of it.

I seem to be damned lucky with chaos orbs. I manage to get at least 3 every week and sell an epic dps chest piece for 10k every time. On that same note the plate boe gear is going amazing still and the legs/chest are still selling much faster than the rest.

Another thing that I'm experimenting with this week are the rare quality NR level leg armors. They cost me at most 48g to make so I'll set my threshold to 60 and a fall back of 120 to see what happens. I'll laugh when they sell for more than the epic NR leg armors and if they sell at all I know it's going to happen.

Speaking of leather working, I've officially raised my price on the profession bags by another 30g. With the massive influx of ore and leather scraps the demand for them is going up accordingly. Since borean leather is usually very high and never sells at the ridiculous prices these things fetch a pretty coin. I remember starting these things in wrath and farming the walrus rep for the LW bag. My starting price was 100g per bag and it has been going up ever since. Love these things.

I'm also going to craft a few of the rare enchant recipes that I've been picking up lately with cool sounding names and weapon effects. The only problem is that they all use primals and the supply for a few of them is non-existant, namely airs. So I took some time to farm up the mats to make the moat extractor toy. While I was at it I crafted a second one to try and sell along with a pair of delicate arcanite converters. The converters need a recipe sold out in winter spring and are used in a few things here and there. So I figured why not I'll give it a shot since I got the mats for almost nothing.

I'm trying out these odd enchants because I do get the occasional sale for Death Frost which does have a pretty sweet looking spell effect. So I'll be crafting sun fire and soul fire and see what happens with them. If nothing else the time spent farming is worth the ability to try out a few new shinys to sell. That and with any spare primals I can always just xmute a few primal mights to sell which are always good money, but only if you can get the mats. I doubt they'll sell at all honestly because they cost a few hundred to make, but hey you never know.

Thanks for stopping by!

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Investments & Bracer enchants

With the new bracer enchants and me posting a loss on the recipe having only made back 3k or the 15 I spent I figured I should take today to talk about how I learned from my mistakes. One of the most important things in playing the AH is learning from your mistakes and not making up excuses. I screwed up on this investment and lost about 12k on it. Even though I can afford to that's not the point. In short I forgot one key piece of my own advice that I've given in the past. Do your homework!

As we all know, an investment is when you spend money now to make more money later. But what some tend to forget is that you have to actually use what you invested in to make the money back or else it's a loss. The simple example is you buy a raw inferno ruby for 100g and turn it into a brilliant inferno ruby. You just made a 100g investment and you have to sell that new cut gem for more than 100g to make a profit. If you just sold an enchant scroll for 500g but vendor the gem you still lost money on your investment.

When it comes to investing, it doesn't matter that you're making money. The important part is where that money is coming from. When you primarily invest in materials, it's a lot easier to make mistakes and not notice if/when you lose out on something because the same gem gets used for many different cuts. But when you buy a recipe for, oh I don't know, a 15k bracer enchant recipe, things take a turn. Here's the way it works.

You drop 15k on a recipe, be it a new bracer enchant or 30 spell power from MC. You now have a 15k investment on that enchant spell and ONLY that one enchant. All the money you make from every other enchant in your book has zero effect on your investment. So you need to sell that single enchant on a scroll or for tips enough times to make 15k profit on the materials. And once you have you -still- haven't made profit from it, you have only made back your initial investment. Yes you can still be in the black come the end of the week, But you still haven't made any profit from that investment what so ever.

This is why it's so important to diversify. Don't put all your gold in the same coin purse as it were. When you branch out into several different markets, you can afford to risk your gold on more investments. When one turns out to be a bad idea you'll still be turning a profit thanks to your steady cash flow from other professions. These investments are a necessity though, as you'll spend a year or five trying to hit the cap just safely doing daily quests and nothing more.

So what of the new bracer enchants? If you can pick them up for like 5k or so then I'd say go for it, but anything more and you'll be waiting a very long time to make your money back on them. However this is entirely dependent on your server population and progression. If you have many guilds regularly clearing content then there's a lot more gear that is "worth" putting this enchant onto and more crystals to be used on it. Unfortunately on my server horde side, there's only 2-3 big raid guilds and only one of them has cleared everything on normal mode.

Because of that these enchants won't be profitable on a scroll for some time to come. However if blizz keeps up with the "free purples for everybody" style the wait won't be too long if you bought one. When the next patch comes and everybody gets suited up in new purples they'll have a ton of points left over to spend on gear that will get DE'd into crystals which will drastically drop the price on them. In addition to that there will be a lot more "worthwhile" gear around that people can justify spending this much on enchanting.

With the new heroics dropping purples the price will be going down after a few weeks and people get "epics" for their 10 alts these will be worth visiting again. They might not be a viable market on a lot of servers still, but I'll be checking them out once prices bottom out again. However if there's another gear reset you can be assured that when that happens these will be much more valuable.

In short if you spend a ton on these, all is not lost. Just wait for crystals to drop a ton when the new heroics come out and you can make your money back. And always remember what you're investing in has to make profit or you have turned a loss. I don't expect to make my money back on that investment for at least another two months. But we all make mistakes and so long as we learn from them there's no reason to get down about it or have that scare you off from future risks and investments.

Thanks for stopping by!