Volume vs Margins

In my current mini quest to update my knowledge of the WoW Auction House (and speed up time to get a token), I’ve tried to fit things into one of two buckets. Sales where the margins are high, and sales where the volume is high.

As with all simplifications, the devil is in the details. High margins are useless if the items only sell once a month, and high volume is painful if the gains per item are too small. So I’m looking for ‘perfect’ items with a minimum gold per sale AND a decent sale rate. I am clearly not the only person doing this, so that specific market is already quite aggressive.

So let’s cover the various markets.

Flipping

This is all but impossible to do without TSM (or similar). You need a list to work from, and then you need to filter that list to only look at items with a certain value (I put mine at 1.5k), and that can actually sell (TSM rate 0.05 is my cut off). I focus on transmog, but pets can also be good. I run a scan for 10 minutes every 3 days, pick up the deals that will turn a 1k profit, and then just keep them posted until they sell.

Harvesting

Skinning, Herbalism, Fishing… all of them turn some profit. Herbalism is by far the easiest (hence the bots) but you need to be moving to find things and follow a decent path. Skinning requires an AE tank, so either a Monk or a Druid, with decent gear to sustain massive pulls. Not really made for an alt, yet more profitable than herbalism. Fishing… well I’m glad you can make money with fishing but it should not be the goal.

Leatherworking

The money here is in transmog. All the other mats are going to legendary gear and the margins there are too thin. Pandaria has Magnificence of Leather (dont use Scales, same effect) on a daily cooldown to get a recipe that turns a decent (1-5k) profit.

Tailoring

I’d like to say that Tailoring has transmog, but not so much. Bags are not profitable. What it can do is support a cloth shuffle. Cloth –> blue tailor items –> disenchant –> shard. This can be profitable since cloth drops for everyone, you don’t need a profession.

Blacksmithing

There’s mount equipment that can turn a profit, but that’s a few expansions back now and base mats may be a challenge. I would not recommend this for making gold in SL.

Alchemy

This is a bread and butter profession with crazy volumes. There is some major volatility, and server reset days often have massive spikes. I craft anything with a 25% margin on crafting, which is 3-5 pots depending on the day. The DPS boost pot shot up by 100g this week, and I ended up clearing something like 10k profit on that in a day.

Enchanting

There are two paths here, shuffling and crafting. Shuffling is a math exercise, extremely dependent on the value of base mats. Some factions provide rebates on necessary crafting materials (like flux) that can save you 25g per craft.

Crafting is more complex. Enchants sell if people swap gear often, which was certainly applicable in the loot pinata of BfA. There’s money to be made here, but it requires the highest core investment of all the professions.

Jewelcrafting

Honestly, you should only have this to prospect and then flip. There are more gem slots in gear now, but the profit margins here aren’t much.

Inscription

This market is still amazingly profitable, but the sale rates are much lower than others. The downside is that the crafting cost of some are over 1k.

Farming Rares

Right, this deserves some comment. There are 4-5 locations in SL that are prime farm locations, with drop rates that are simply insane due to super fast spawn times. Boomkins dominate this space. It’s heavy on RNG, but 10k/h is a reasonable expectation if you’re just vendoring. BoE drops can get you 100k+ though.

Callings

This is 2K per day, for about 10 minutes of work. Best to save up 3 days, as often callings overlap. You shouldn’t really bother with the AH if you can’t make similar amounts in similar timeframes.

Is it Worth It?

Unless you really like spreadsheets, honestly I would avoid this entirely. The game is already ultra generous in gold drops, and there are no purchases so far out of reach to bankrupt anyone. In terms of gold/real hour, you figure 1 token = $15. 1 token is around 120k gold. So for near minimum wage at 1 hour you can pay for a token.

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