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Wowhead Economy Weekly Wrap-Up 195 | How to Value Items and Set Prices
19.09.2021 в 13:00
WoW Economy Weekly Wrap-Up
Hello! Welcome to the 195th edition of the WoW Economy Weekly Wrap-up!
My name is
and I am a content creator focusing on making gold using Professions and
. I have a number of guides over on
and I also stream my adventures on
The Value of Items
has posed a very interesting question all around the value of items and what price sources to use and the thinking behind the prices you set for your items.
Crafting, dbmarket, smartavgbuy, are all price sources that TSM provides us with then helping us to value an item but how can you use them when listing items on the auction house?
What Interests me is there are at least two possible angles you can look at this from, of which neither is right or wrong. This often means many people have very different setups when it comes to selling items. I am keen to gauge different peoples' approaches and discuss the pros and cons of each.
1st is the personal value to yourself of an item, intrinsic value. This is the cost to craft an item, or often what you bought an item for. We can use price sources within TSM such as 'crafting' or 'avgbuy' as the basis of our valuation when taking this approach, but this price is often not equal to what somebody looking to buy the item considers it is worth.
2nd is the value of the item to the buyer, extrinsic value. This could be the usefulness, power, or even rarity of the item. These features of an item all relate to a portion of the value of any item but are often not easily assigned a gold number. Sources like dbmarket, or even the wider dbregionmarketavg can help assign a number here, but equally have the problem of being easily manipulated or inflated.
So finally, what do you consider when posting items? Do you play it safe and base your posting prices on values such as 'crafting' to limit yourself from selling too cheap, only selling at a profit. Or do you simply post an item based on what you can get for that item at any given point, even if you need to sell it for less than you paid/crafted it for?
Thanks in advance for your feedback.
This can be a very personal choice and many will base their decisions on how they go about obtaining items and which markets they operate in..
Both matter to me to an extent, I always want to make a profit on an item, but sometimes due to bad either bad judgement or unforseen circumstances the market can turn against you. In such a scenario, you either cut your losses and adjust your value downwards, or if you envisage a future scenario where prices will rise again, you wait it out till the market rebounds.
I tend to be flipping focussed, and so use something along the lines of avg((110% Smartavgbuy/0.95), 90% dbmarket) for a min price on trade goods, which kind of hedges the bets, and takes of account of both the price you paid and the current dbmarket value.
You could adjust the formula to say something like ifgt(smartavgbuy, 120% dbmarket, 90% dbmarket) as a minimum price. i.e. if the market turns against you and the price you bought rises to 1.2x the dbmarket, cut your losses and post at a min of 90% of the market value.
The other thing I'm considering factoring in is the trend on an item, i.e. dbregionmarketavg/dbregionhistorical - I know you did a vid on this one previously, adopting a more agressive strategy to shift items if they are clearly falling in value and conversely looking for greater profits where values are rising.
also talks about the market value of materials and why smartavgbuy does not always take into account current market values...
A lot of the data we have is much more useful to determine the intrinsic value, however I always to try find formulas that lean more and more towards the extrinsic value. Ideally I would like to just use the extrinsic value for everything, but it's a lot more difficult to determine what that value is.
At it's core, I always try to value my materials at what it would cost me to buy more of that material, and then craft items if I expect to be able to sell them at a profit from those material prices.
My reasoning for this is fairly simple, if I buy materials cheaply (10g ea) in may, wait untill patch 9.1 releases, by which point the materials went up to 100g, and then craft an item with 10 of those materials and sell it for 1200g, then most people would consider their profit as 1100g. But I disagree with that way of thinking, and I consider that a very successfull material investment, and completely separately from that a good crafting profit of 200g.
When buying a bunch of materials in advance, you are essentially just investing into a material flip, even if you don't intend to sell the materials, but craft with them.
If the material price goes up, then I did a good investment. that does not mean I should now sell my crafted items for less as what the materials cost now, because then I would be better off just selling the materials.
On the other hand, if the materials drop in price, all of a sudden all your crafted items are at a "loss", which means you will end up not crafting / selling them anymore, so you will end up keeping more of your stock, which most likely will keep dropping in value.
So for those reasons, when crafting I value materials at what it would cost me to buy more materials now, and what I paid for them does not matter when crafting, since that was a separate investment.
Sometimes also, simple is often a good place to operate...
I make it fairly simple.
For anything personally crafted using AH bought mats, for the minimum, I use crafting multiplied by the percentage (never going below 100%) I feel as adequate for the rarity while considering the deposit fee if it’s significant.
For everything else, and normal/maximum of my crafted pieces, I use an average of maximum prices for crafting/dbmarket/dbregion/etc/etc. I add a modifier for certain groups where the value might be more or less. I use this same string with a different modifier on minimum prices for items I don’t craft but am simply flipping. The only problem I’ve found is that if your modifier is too low after a price reset, and you forgot to adjust it, you might get caught by an undercutter’s drastic price decrease.
Personally, I use a mix of smartavgbuy for mats used in crafting and a percentage of crafting for selling as a minimum. The caveat here is that some material market prices will need manual adjustment if the market has changed significantly since I bought it. Also, I use an average of dbmarket and regionmarketavg for setting the normal and maximum prices. Sometimes I have to switch to pure regionavg if the local market goes into silly numbers.
continues this thought process by incorporating the different factors into a custom source and a simpler looking operation. He explains the process and conclusions in this video here ...
All in all, it serves as a great discussion point into tailoring TSM to work for you in a way that suits your brain and play style.
80+ Million Gold in 9.1
regales us with a wonderful tale of how they managed to earn a very sizable chunk of gold during 9.1 in particular the reflections on the mindset involved...
Upfront, I'd like to say this was not a get-rich-quick scheme, nor easily replicable. I think opportunities for large gold-making change every major patch / expansion - so instead think of principles to help set you up for success. I'm using an anonymous account to post this because I intend to continue making gold (albeit much less aggressively) and don't really need the additional attention. :)
For the last three months, the US token fluctuated between 170k - 195k gold, making my current liquid gold (around 87mil) a value of ~$6,700 - $7,600.
I joined a Full-pop realm in October 2020 with 0 gold, pre-SL release. Made no significant gold from launch. Sometime mid-way through the patch, I made my first million crafting missives for around two weeks nonstop (before missive prices tanked permanently). I noticed the potential with legendaries, but did not have the capital to fight with the large crafters - so focused on two Rank 4s: Boneshatter Helm and Umbrahide Vest (Feb 2021). If you remember 9.0 prices, this took a significant amount of gold to rank up, and took incredibly long to do with no capital. I basically reinvested every copper I earned back into crafting more legos to sell.
Around April 2021, I noticed raw materials were much lower than launch and made a crazy goal for myself - I was going to obtain Rank 4 in every possible legendary slot. Note: I was unemployed then (pandemic problems) and had plenty of time to almost play WoW fulltime. I maxed out all Leatherworking slots (mid-May), bought a second AH account, maxed out Tailoring (end-May), then Blacksmithing and Jewelcrafting (mid-June). Note this was a Full-pop realm, so I had plenty of competition plus profits were not high mid-patch - I had to repost on the AH very aggressively and religiously, plus continuously reinvested my profits into crafting new Ranks. I never exceeded 3mil liquid gold at this time.
Around May/June was when I started trying to focus on 9.1 predictions. The AH Podcast and
Youtube channel were my biggest sources. I hated the Domination socket concept (still do) because it ruined what I thought was my potential to make back the profit I wanted for the effort I put in. I was convinced I wouldn't even make one gold cap. There was no smooth sailing at any point. By the time I realized Vestiges required Renown 44, all my secondary crafters had to basically grind all Renown from 0 in a week (before 9.1 catchup). All the people making millions immediately in 9.1 release were selling ilvl 230 equips (which I did not plan to pursue). My biggest competitors also came back during this time - the largest of which was literally posting on four accounts simultaneously (props to dedication, was annoying AF to compete against).
But immediately once
posted here in
that you unlock Vestige immediately at Renown 44 - that's when things started going uphill. :) Basically six months of non-stop effort I worked on (Feb - July 2021) started to pay off. You can see the gold climb here..
Nothing significant happened after to me, I basically rode the wave upwards until now (continuous daily reposting).
- In certain markets, legendaries being one of them, you have to love reposting, because that's all you're gonna do for months on end. All your competitors will be reposting consistently, sometimes (like me) almost 12-20 hours a day. If you don't like it, just move to a different market - there's plenty of ways to make gold, and plenty of strengths to rely on.
- It takes me several hours(!) of pure crafting to replenish the stock of sales from the previous day. A lot of Callous Hides, Lightless Silk, Desolate Leather, Soul Dust, Laestrite Ore, etc.
- The people who make large gold are the ones who stick it out, not the ones who undercut consistently for a quick sale. I know basically all my main large competitors by character name, and none of them practice undercutting.
- Only three times, someone impatient tried to crash a lego item market against me, starting a price war, instead of reposting like everyone else. The secret is: when you're diversified enough, plus have patience, it makes no difference in the long run. The person with more capital will win in the end, especially when selling at a minor loss means basically nothing. None of those players stayed in the market longer than a week or two. (Honestly, I did glean some small pleasure from crushing them - after all, they started the fight with me first. Sorry, not sorry.)
- My partner joked I spent more time with my competitors than my partner themself! The truth is, with patience, everybody makes gold. There's no reason to be upset at reposting, it's a cost of business. Nobody knows the goblin life than other goblins anyway, we're all connected over something we enjoy doing. Plus, sometimes the market whispers each other and colludes to increase the price of certain items so everybody wins. ;)
Are you a bot?
- lol no
(I question it sometimes myself)
- Go back in time and buy Lightless Silk when it was under 1g, then sell it at launch at 30x the price, converting 3mil into 90mil. No effort required.
- I obtain more pleasure earning gold than spending gold, but one day I'll throw in the 12-14mil to get a BMAH Bruto service and get that longboi.
- The rich get richer. True irl and also true in-game.
Perception of Money
- It's a bit crazy - but everything becomes cheap and reasonable when you're a millionaire (in-game). My value of time is so much higher now - I turn down offers to craft items via whispers because it's not worth the customer service effort and going out of my way to make one small sale. Also I try to be generous with my friends and guild, without also being expected to act like a rich person. I used to think people who spent 10mil for a Brutosaur were insane, now I understand why they do it - there's not really a lot to spend gold on after a while haha. I can understand how billionaires irl have skewed perceptions of reality - and honestly don't think it's healthy for our society and our future.
Future of WoW
- I think we all love this game, and we know that things will have to dramatically get better for the people who work there too, or there would be no real game for us to earn/spend gold on anymore. Shoutout to the #ActiBlizzWalkout and their charities (Black Girls Code, Futures without Violence, et al.).
That's it. This is my way of giving back to the
community which I've kept an eye on for years. One redditor even gave me a 1-on-1 lesson on TSM via Discord (Dec 2020), and I appreciate him immensely. Shoutout to guildies who helped me craft a shitload of enchanted leather when I couldn't afford to max Enchanting in 9.0 too.
Wishing all the best to the new up-and-coming goblins (I was one of you a year ago). Hoping for some interesting things to happen in 9.1.5 and 9.2. Cheers!
This is a fantastic example of a very focused effort to earn gold and shows how looking ahead to markets and planning for opportunities while being prepared to double-down and spend time on the process pays off. Congratulations u/SecretGoldMaker! This is a great achievement and I hope inspires others to get into the gold making game.
Do Stats Matter?
This question was posed by
Im getting into the crafted 200+ ilvl gear market, and ive currently just crafted stuff with random stats. Is it worth to start buying missives to decide the stats?
The answer may initially be simple, but there are nuances ..
Short answer, no.
Long answer, without elaborating, for the buyer, yes. BUT, they all sell, it’s just non-preferred stats take a bit longer to sell while preferred stats fly off the shelves.
I still craft with RNG stats, and sell plenty by only reposting every 12hrs.
Fyi if you use a missive you can proc double stat, for example a lvl 200 helm with 145 haste and no other stat.. it can get pretty wild, I hit 36% haste on brand new shaman
If you missed this niche, Manthieus has a
explaining the process..
People may hate me for sharing this, but crafting multiple of the same gear is the lazy man’s trick.
As others pointed out, stats on gear do matter. To address this, there are three approaches to craft and sell:
Using missive — missive is not worth it when profit are thin which is the case for most high pop realms and even median pop realms. In low pop realms, people tends to buy whatever is the cheapest available(from my experience, things may vary on different realms). Stats still matter but matters less compare to the extra time you need to spend crafting them.
Craft a whole bunch of each item without missive so you get a good number of each stats combination. This ends up working really well for the realms I played on (full pop and low pop). There maybe concerns from theorycrafters that this approach would end up crafting a lot of gear of unwanted stats. I honestly worried a little before I tried it. My results tells me that didn’t and would not happen. If you just sell the unwanted stats 1gold cheaper than other stats combination, they will sell. The underline reasoning is because there are always people who care about stats and people who don’t (people who really don’t care and people who will get better gear from dungeon/raid/PvP quickly). They would magically balance out, so you don’t need to worry about it at all once you find the magic number which is how many you should craft for each gear. From my experience, anywhere between 4-20 could work. You can start low and slowly increase that number to find the best for your realm. For rings, necklaces and back, you can even go as high as 30. It is complicated to explain why this number matter. If you want to know, let me know. I’ll reply later. There are TSM configurations behind this to really make it efficient.
I would call the third min-max approach. It is a combination of 1 and 2. You start by crafting a bunch of each gear. After some sales, if any unbalancing appears, you correct it with missives. Although it was not my case, it might be necessary in some realms. I believe the time investment in tracking what stats sales just doesn’t worth it. You can use this time to do others stuff that makes you much more gold.
Put aside all above, it sounds like you are new to making gold due to the fact that you don’t have your own inscription. I would suggest craft one 200 gear at a time first and see how much you can sell in a week. If your realm has people who keeps cancel scan on you and you are not committed to fight him. You might loss gold by crafting a bunch at a time—> couldn’t get sales—> give up selling. You can also just post your realm here and people (maybe me) may help you check your realm’s economy.
There are also differences if you are selling ilevel 87, 200 or 230 gear as each will have it's own market demands. Largely, it depends on how deep you want to get into the market, but a general base ilevel mass craft works in most situations.
Most of this information was discussed and originally posted on the
subreddit or in the accompanying
. You can also catch me streaming live on
on Sunday from around 7PM GMT UK Time (2pm Eastern Time) for the WoW Economy Weekly Wrap-up live on Wowhead.com, or you can tweet your feedback/thoughts via Twitter at
I hope you found this useful and If you have any suggestions or feedback, please do say so in the comments below..
Until next time, Happy Goldmaking!
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