Most people are under some sort of weird concept that the price of an item is somehow regulated. In some cases that is true, but in the wide majority the market itself defines the price. The price of a car is determined by the price of other cars. Something is only a deal if you are aware of the true market value.
As a consumer the most powerful weapon you have is knowledge. This is also the inverse for a seller, you want to have more information than your client in order to maximize profit. Now in the real world, few people actually understand this model – we are all consumers. (The stock market as a whole takes advantage of this.)
In online games with auction houses, we can all be sellers and consumers. And information is the true weapon in that battle.
I mentioned in the previous post about a Cloth shuffle. Lightless Silk and Shrouded Cloth are traded on the AH, made into bracers, disenchanted, and the shard/dust is sold again on the AH for a profit. At “standard” market rates, you make ~25g per craft, which is decent.
But what if I don’t want standard rates? I change the market value.
Regular rate for Shrouded Cloth is 1.7g. If I can cut that down to 1g, I make an extra 7g per bracer, or a 33% increase in profit. How? I post a single item at 1g. If it’s a single item, bots won’t pick it up and 95% of player will try to undercut me. If I keep on the AH and simply buy everything that shows up at 1g (keeping my 1 item on sale), I can make a killing. I did this the other day for 5 minutes and picked up 2000 cloth at a much better rate.
Lightless Silk goes for 22g. I can cut that to 15g and turn my bracer profit up to 41g. I could go lower, but I need to stay within the default TSM4 value (25% of market rates). That means a potential floor of 50s for the Cloth 5.5g for the Silk and a per profit take of 66g.
This only allows me to change value down. To change the value as an increase, I need to buyout everything. This is ok in low volume markets, but in the Cloth/Dust market, that means spending 100k+ to create a new value. Instead I simply need to wait until the market corrects itself based on time of day. Late Saturday or early Sunday gets the most bang.
Buy low and sell high…certainly helps when you can decide what is considered low.