I never really made much money in WoW until I started playing the Auction House. It is quite fun most of the time, and it’s something I can mess with quickly in the mornings before work when there’s really no time to quest. Using MoneyFu, I can see the results of all my transactions, and the amount of gold on my bank alt (and all my other characters), is tallied for me for the session, day, week, etc. I use one of the Auctioneer suites to help me keep on top of things, and there are several markets that I regularly participate in.
There are annoyances with the Auction House, however. In fact, there is a particular person on my server who is my official Auction House arch enemy. My husband and I both have gotten to know her behaviors quite well. We call her The Undercutter. Now, undercutting is a natural part of the AH competition between sellers. I undercut people all the time. The annoying thing is the way she undercuts.
First, she always undercuts by just 2 copper. 2 freakin’ copper! Just make it a whole silver, lady!
She also undercuts with no regard for the market value. So, for example, if there’s a pattern I know will go for 5 gold, I’ll post it for that. She’ll then undercut me by 2 copper. Ok, fine. But, if I post it for 5 gold, and someone else, not realizing/checking/believing what it’s worth posts it for just 1 gold, she will undercut them by 2c. Gah! Stoppit!
For some items, she’s also a chronic market flooder. So, in the case above, she might not just undercut the 1 gold person with one copy of the pattern. She’ll post 5 copies of it, effectively reducing the value of it just because that one person didn’t realize what it was worth. Her five copies take a while to be bought, so others come in and undercut her, and with that chain reaction the market value is substantially diminished. And it’s not that she doesn’t know that it can go for 5 gold, because she’s seen/undercut my price before. If later mine is the only one posted for 5 gold again, she’ll just undercut me by the 2 copper. I can only assume that she just doesn’t care. It’s maddening. A lot of the stuff she’s selling is bought from vendors and resold (there is surprisingly good money in this, actually), and so I suppose she’s happy just as long as she’s making a profit. It’s like she’s using the AH as her own little personal store front.
If it’s just a matter of a single undercut of the market price, sometimes I’ll post a second one and undercut her again, or post at the same buyout with a slightly lower bid price so it will potentially be listed before hers. Take that! If she does her market flooding thing to undercut something far below the market value, and we get the chain reaction I described above, then I usually just sit back and wait. I want to maximize my profit, so I just hold onto my items and wait until the garbage clears up. A few times, I’ve thought about sending her an in game mail and suggesting she also be patient so we can both make more money, but again, chances are, she just doesn’t care.
The other people that drive me crazy are the crafters that post all their items at once. When I was skilling up my leatherworking, I noted that Wicked Leather Headbands sold for about a gold. So, I crafted a bunch of them and started posting one per day, slowly selling them off. They were relatively expensive to post (I can’t remember how much, maybe 10-20 silver each), but it was totally worth it to have them sell. (These are great for rogues and hunters.) One day I logged in to find I’d been undercut by someone who’d posted eight all at once, at half my price. Oh-kay. So, again, it’s annoying that they ignored the market value and flooded the market, but … couldn’t they see that if not all of them sold, they would likely not make a profit? Let’s say they sold one for 50 silver. It cost them more than that to post all of them. Can’t they see that they’re losing money?! Stupidity! I guess they were hoping for an enchanter to sweep in and pick up all of them, providing them fast cash immediately, even if they hadn’t maximized their profit. That’s quite a gamble though.
I see this kind of nonsense all the time on my server, and it only seems to be getting worse. But, maybe this naturally happens as a server population increases and the supply of items increases. I remember watching the AH for shadowgems when I was skilling up my jewelcrafting. Mostly they were selling for a gold each, but occasionally, someone would post them for 75 silver or less, so I’d snarf them up to grab a point here and there when I wanted to train in the next set of patterns. My jewelcrafter has ultimately picked up a bunch by mining or received them from my other alts, and is past the point where they’re useful to her any more. For a little while, I was able to resell them for about a gold, but lately, they’re listed for just 10 silver each. Unbelievable. So, I’m hanging on to them for now to see what happens. Buy low, sell high. Patience is the key. The vision dust market usually clears up eventually as well, so maybe the shadowgem market will recover, too.
How’s the AH on your server?
(Also, the Wailing Caverns post is up! *pant pant*)