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Thursday, September 15, 2011

The 30g Ceiling

I've had a substantial shift in thought about the glyph market over the past week or so. As some will remember from my previous post I've been spending a little over a week dedicating my glyph efforts to creating a low price ceiling, assuring that no glyph on Argent Dawn-US Alliance couldn't be found for 30g or less.

What originally started me on the idea was that I wanted to make it known to the other glyph sellers I was back from my break and could still be a major player in the glyph market if I wanted to be.  I didn't intend to keep the blockade up for more than a month or so, nor did I have a scheme in place to raise prices. When I eventually grew bored of selling glyphs I'd either sell out of all my glyphs at 30g slowly, or I would raises prices back up to their AD-Alliance norm of 70-125g per glyph.  I didn't go in with a grand plan because, quite frankly, I'm terrible at such things.

However, the more I've done this the more I enjoy it.  I make less profit per glyph but still come out on top every day. I spent a few days making a glyph stockpile for this and now it takes very little effort to keep myself on top of my sales.

It got me thinking about my reaction to Horde glyph prices a few months ago.  They were ridiculous. I actually was kind of offended that people were charging so much.


I've been thinking about something: 

Why do people charge so much (50-300g) per glyph?
Because they can.

I'm not saying they shouldn't; I feel that, bottom line, a fair price to pay for any item is whatever both parties, fully knowledgeable in the agreement, are willing to agree upon. 

However, there's no reason they need to charge so much.  The materials for most glyphs on Argent Dawn Alliance clock in at less than 25g.  Many minor glyphs actually cost less than 5g to make, and yet people are charging 20x that amount for the finished product, not because they need to make up crafting costs but because they can.

Likewise, it's not to make up for leveling the profession. Inscription is, hands down, the "cheapest" profession to level in the sense that you actually will profit 100% of the time if you're not being incredibly stupid.  It's the only crafting profession in which any item you make at level 10 can be as valuable, if not moreso, than an item you make at 450. 

So why can they do this?
The reason scribes are able to charge such a high percentage on their crafted items is because of the perceived difficulty of competing in the market.  The amount of bagspace a full round of glyphs takes is outrageous, the crafting time can seem terrible if you don't stockpile ahead of time.  The research to learn all the glyphs takes a very long time (Anyone know the exact amount of days researching every glyph would take without the use of books?)  when you compare it to powerleveling Leatherworking in one sitting.

When I was selling glyphs I would often have people say "Don't buy from Faid, just bring me herbs and I'll make you whatever glyph you want."  Fair enough, but because of the many tiers of herbs, the fact there's no guarantee that you'll get x amount of ink from y herb every time, etc. makes these sorts of transactions difficult and unappealing to a consumer.  There are those out there who aren't trying to make mad profits with Inscription, but because of their lack of desire to compete in the market, they don't really succeed in impacting the prices at all.

Zee Plan
My goal is to change that.  I have the infrastructure in place already and the knowledge to compete in the market.  I don't seek to make a profit and I don't really have any plan to ever raise prices. I did the whole "let's see how much gold I can make" thing.  I got bored with it, that's why I haven't even been playing WoW for a while.  I want to try something new.

I want to prove that scribes can make a profit without overcharging customers on the AH.  I want Argent Dawn-Alliance to question why they're spending 150g on a glyph that cost that other guy 5g to make.  Really I just want to have some fun, and provide cheaper glyphs.

Some days I may not sell a single glyph. I think this will  become more common as scribes adjust to the new glyph landscape and offer cheaper prices.  But that's still okay with me, because I'm not in this to sell and get rich. I've been there, done that. I'm here to create a change on Argent Dawn, and I look forward to seeing the  outcome.

43 comments:

  1. A piece of bread is worth what people are willing to pay for it.

    I fail to see where your indignation comes from.

    You can ofc Auction house PvP for whatever reason you want, be it morals or profits, but some scribes only have that char and struggle enough as it is getting their glyphs sold in the markets.

    You said:"I don't seek to make a profit and I don't really have any plan to ever raise prices."

    So you are in effect ruining the market for all scribes on your server, for cheaper glyphs for the masses. And that's the problem imo. If you were just out to make gold, then fine, screw the competition, but now you're doing it on moral grounds...but still screwing over a segment of your server population: the other scribes :)

    Anyway, interesting stuff with the glyph markets, It's almost a spring revolution! :P Good luck with your endeavour :)

    Swoosh -Thunderhorn EU

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  2. @Swoosh:

    "A piece of bread is worth what people are willing to pay for it."

    Indeed, exactly as I said:

    ". . . a fair price to pay for any item is whatever both parties, fully knowledgeable in the agreement, are willing to agree upon."

    I don't claim to be taking a moral highground over the other scribes on the server. I can see how my post may have been read as such, but that's not the intent.

    I guess my stance is, if you view the glyph market as a box I'm tired of pretending it's a spaceship, now I want to pretend it's a boat. I want to change my approach and see how much fun I can have.

    At the end of the day I'm not ruining any market for anyone, I think that's sort of my point. I'm not bringing glyphs into unprofitable territory, for those willing to stick it out profit is definitely still attainable, and in fact many scribes have risen to the occasion and undercut me quite a bit.

    The only people who have had anything completely ruined are the lazy or the stupid. The market is changed, but not ruined.

    Me: I have fun, try some new experiences.
    Consumers: Cheaper glyphs.
    Scribes willing to continue in the market: Reasonable profit.

    Anyone willing to put in the effort will continue to have a profitable profession. Anyone not willing to do so may leave, no skin off my back.

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  3. So you made your profits from glyphs
    and now you want to sell glyphs cheaper than you did before?

    Some glyph sellers have not had the benefit you have had of selling glyphs higher than their cost to craft.

    Morality has nothing to do with cheap glyphs.

    Take a break. Let someone else profit from the glyph market for awhile. They cannot compete with your cheap glyphs unless they also have a profit base from selling them like you have.

    Face the facts. You want to control the market 'Because you can'.

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  4. Just be careful that you don't oversell your glyph market. I've written several posts over at The Consortium about pacing your glyph markets. If your volume and margin ratios aren't properly balanced, you might actually lose control in a situation where you are looking to gain it.

    @Swoosh - scribes are a fickle bunch to begin with. If a brand new scribe is diving into this market with blinders on, they deserve what's coming, IMO.

    @Saffronia - The market for inscription is larger than just glyphs. Unloading glyphs at or near cost can be a great way to facilitate purchasing even more herbs, which can better your position among your competition. Just because you aren't counting on glyphs as your major profit source, doesn't mean that can't still be making a great deal of profit. Furthermore, just because glyphs aren't profitable for new scribes trying to break into the market, doesn't mean they can't make a good deal of gold from inscription.

    It's all in the execution ;)

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  5. Sadly, you've gotten what you wanted out of the glyph market and now seem to need to have your fun by spoiling it for others.

    With your resources and experience I can't imagine controlling the AD glyph market would be terribly difficult. Why not find something else to do that's new, more constructive, and actually poses a challenge for you? That has the potential to be more fun, and remain fun for much longer.

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  6. @The crybabies crying about your glyph market being ruined: Faid is not selling below cost. She is intending to sell at price points which are profitable to her AND are cheap for the consumers to buy buy buy. She will let u sell just not for 200g profit.

    Chopper says Harden the F up or go home crying. So does Critical.

    PS: I love the guilt trips. Very well done u even convinced Faid to address/explain herself to you lazy scribes who are worried you will have to work harder to sell glyphs. Yes I'm talking to you lazy scribe. You have to earn your right to stay in any market, no government handouts in wow for you.

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  7. So you sell glyphs for 5g "profit" or less? What do you base cost on? Is time and effort invested calculated at all?

    To me it's always "time is money (friend)". People have full time jobs, long commutes, busy families, some still go to school on the side. And to some that half hour at the AH after work is therapy, kickback time. Your profile says you're a student and from what I'm reading you probably have a lot of time on your hands for "experiments" such as this.

    I do agree that some of these margins are excessive. A 25g glyph for 350g? Taking advantage. 150g? Pushing it. 100g? Appropriate. With that said, I too agree that you're ruining the glyph selling game for those who are not in the position to invest that much time for such low returns, and Saffronia and deja both brought up great points in my opinion.

    But in today's world it's all about me-me-me anyway. How much fun *I* can have is what it's all about and all that matters after all. Screw everyone else. It's no different in game.

    And yes, we're all just lazy crybabies.

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  8. I read this blog post last night and decided to think on it overnight and into today before posting. I've never actually commented on any blog post before, but I felt that I could maybe add a little bit to the discussion. I'll begin with the fact that I have read Faid's blog for several months now, and it has become one of my favorites.

    Around mid August, I joined a reroll guild that just happened to have started on Argent Dawn-US, alliance side. I chose inscription when I made my new character, partly to help make glyphs for the guild, but also because I knew that glyphs could also provide me with some nice coin. This was during the time that Faid was not posting, so there were several different competitors listing their glyphs. I had to take about a week and a half break from the game due to RL issues, and when I returned, I saw that Faid was back. So, here are my experiences in the AD alliance glyph market, before and after Faid's return.

    Before: I don't remember seeing a glyph being posted above 150g. In fact, I think it was around 80g or so for the average highest price. I felt this was fair, considering the fact that my other server (Wyrmrest Accord-US, alliance) had glyphs on the auction for well over 300g a piece. I posted what I could make and made an okay profit. Glyph sales were sporadic and going back over my My Sales data, it looks like I sold glyphs anywhere from 4-35g a piece, with a couple DK glyphs selling at around 120g. Cheap low level herbs were plentiful, but this could have been due to the 200+ people that rerolled in my guild. Most low level inks (Midnight, Jadefire, etc.) I paid about 1g a piece for, and Shimmering Ink was going for less than 50s per ink. There were several different people posting during this time.

    After: After I noticed that Faid was back, I saw a spike in my glyph sales. My profits are up and I have made back the gold that I spent on my epic flying skill, plus more. Herb prices are up and I've been farming as much as possible. Whether this is due to Faid buying up all the cheaper herbs or there just not being that much on the auction, I'm not sure. I'm glad that I enjoy farming, though! The number of people who regularly posts glyphs has gone down. I don't have to cancel and re-list as much as I was doing before.

    So I guess what I'm trying to say is Faid's "30g or less" glyph sale has actually been a great success for my bank account. I'm not making thousands of gold per week, but you know what? That's fine, too. Slow and steady wins the race, and all of that. I don't feel that Faid is a threat to my glyph sales and I say more power to her if that's what she wants to do. I wish she'd rethink the 30g ceiling and maybe raise it to 50, but I'm not the one with the million gold. ;)

    @Critical: The other commenters who are, for a lack of a better term, being critical of Faid's experiment have valid points. I don't think it's necessary take such a harsh tone with them. I do actually wonder the motives that Faid has with this, but when you get right down to it, it's just virtual currency in some online game. There are far more worthwhile things to get worked up over.

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  9. Sorry I know Faid is capable of replying for herself and I am not replying for her. I am just curious, how is your (crappy or otherwise) RL situation her responsibility?

    And when is the AH not about me-me-me? You would without hesitation undercut all competitors by 1cp just to get a sale. Is that not mememe? What about those competitors that you just undercut? What if they have a busy Real Life? You just screwed them because they cant camp like you do.

    Or do you overcut by 1cp and pat yourself on the back? Congrats. You are a socially responsible citizen.

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  10. Wow, quite the response! I was going to back off from talking about this for a few days because I don't want to come off as being defensive of my plan which I feel doesn't need defending, but since people seem to be getting a bit riled over it I want to clarify a few points.

    First, @Kinalun: I'm glad you've benefit from this as well. Honestly I'm just trying to have some fun, and see what I can do. I was very cautious about every step I took in markets as I was first making gold. Now that I feel I'm at liberty to throw that caution to the wind I'm having fun approaching glyphs with a policy of moderation instead of one of "the highest I can possibly get." I'm glad to hear this has had a positive outcome for you as well. :)

    @Saffronia: "Face the facts. You want to control the market 'Because you can'.""

    Yes, exactly, I"m glad you understand where I'm coming from.

    So often people post on gold forums and blogs about trying to get the best price and manipulating the markets to that end. So why is it that now, when I'm doing the exact same market manipulation to lower prices, that I'm suddenly being unreasonable?

    At the end of the day it's all just fake money, and I enjoy playing around with it.

    I don't think I'm God's Gift to Argent Dawn glyph consumers or to glyph sellers. I'm not on a crusade to free the buyers from the vicious, iron grip of the fatcat greedy glyph seller.

    I'm playing with a market, just like so many others.

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  11. And for the record, they can definitely compete with my prices. I have many competitors selling glyphs cheaper than I do and I imagine they wouldn't sell at a loss. I'm not selling for 2g per glyph which costs 5g to craft. I'm selling at 30g/glyph when I personally craft all glyphs for 18g or less. There is a 12g window in which anyone can work if they have the gumption to do so.

    Even if they didn't, that's not my concern. Pretty much anyone serious about making gold will tell you it's important to diversify so that if a market tanks or the game changes you have something to fall back on. If someone feels (incorrectly) that they can't make a profit in this market at the current point in time they can fall back on one of their other tactics. If they have no other tactics their poor planning does not fall on my shoulders.

    @Kathroman: I will definitely look into the concept of overselling; one of the reasons I was putting off commenting was because I wanted to look into that when posting, which I have not done yet. But I look forward to reading about it, I always love reading what you have to say. If it's what I think it is (And I'm going clearly from assumption here, so I may be wrong and I apologize) it doesn't really bother me that much. I enjoy creating this ceiling but if things go awry, if I lose control or the demand diminishes or anything of that sort I'll be okay with it. This is a fun venture to see what happens, an experiment of sorts, not much more. But I will look more carefully into your posts. :)

    @deja: I'm spoiling nothing, as I've pointed out. New scribes can still make gold in this market (check out Kinalun's comment to this blog post) if they have the ambition to do so.

    If they couldn't, well, I guess I have to wonder why I'm supposed to care. At the end of the day I'm doing this because it's a fun, new experience. There is a bonus, however, in that I'm providing cheaper glyphs to consumers, though that is not my actual goal, just a side effect. Now tell me, why is the privilege of getting cheaper glyphs for the masses more important in your eyes than a small number of scribes having the privilege of a high-priced market? Why are benefits for teh consumer overlooked in favor of the benefits for the seller?

    In the situation I am creating sellers can make profit, buyers don't have to pay higher prices. Everyone wins. :D

    @Critical Goblin: I'm glad you see where I'm coming from. Please do realize that I value all of my readers, even those who don't really seem to understand, or who disagree with me. I fully appreciate your sentiment but please do refrain from being rude to the other commenters, we're all here to discuss a topic that interests us. :D Thanks for "getting it" when I explain where I'm coming from!

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  12. @jael: It's not 5g profit or less, it's a minimum of 5g profit. With some glyphs taking 3g or so to craft, that's a 27g (minus paper and posting costs, so let's say 25g) profit. 3g to 25g is, what, 8x the investment value? That's pretty damn high.

    It took some time getting set up. I had to craft a large amount of each glyph at the beginning to create a foundation and that did take a lot of time. However, it was easy for me to fit into my schedule. I'm taking a film class this semester in which I must watch a few films each week, so it's easy for me to mindlessly craft while watching Netflix. So while the time invested is quite high, it was not a huge deal for me.

    Since creating the initial stock I spend about 10 minutes per day maintaining. I restock the glyphs I've sold and keep my backstock set up. It's not much time at all. And honestly, the value I'm getting out of the experience I'm not measuring in monetary terms, I'm more interested in the experiement and to see what happens, not to come out far ahead. Even if I don't sell a lot or make a huge profit I'll still learn what it's like to create and maintain a glyph ceiling and that, itself, is fun and rewarding for me. FOR SCIENCE!




    All of that said, I welcome any future comments, regardless of if you agree or not; if I didn't want to engage with people and hear their thoughts I wouldn't blog! Do please maintain a level of politeness at all times though. :)

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  13. This to me is just you messing with the market. If someone is overcharging then lots enter the market and the price comes down or people dont buy. Ever see an epic at 50k and never sell. Post a glyph at 1k and they wont sell either. Post glyphs at 300g that require research and they will sell. Selling requires two parties. A buyer and a seller. No one is forcing anyone to buy. There are always people in trade willing to make them....it just may mean you have to wait a day or so to find them. You pay a price for getting it now.

    Why charge 30g? My cost to make a glyph is less than 5g? Cata herbs are cheap such that the inferno ink more than covers the cost of the stack. I still will sell my glyphs on average at 100g each. If you came and dropped prices to 30g....on my server you would recieve at most 100 purchases or 3000g. I saw this happen before......people get tired of it and leave. I have stayed in the glyph market for a couple of years. Sure I have made a couple of million from this but I still provide the service at the lowest cost and all rare glyphs are available. You want cheap glyphs...someone else can post them....I dont care. When you tire of your experiment I will still be here. Share the market with others....nothing wrong with it. You are also entitle to sell at 30g.....but at some point you may decide the amount of return isnt worth it. For me its a game as I am nearing my third gold capped char....crazy and pointless but it is just 30 mins a day of fun for me.

    Good Luck on your experiment. See if you can make it last longer than a few months.

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  14. I have someone on my server that employs similar tactics, it has basically forced me out of the glyph market.

    It is not that I cannot make gold, it is just that the amount of time I spend to make that gold makes it not worth my while.

    I spend my time on other things that can actually make me a worth while return.

    I see what you are doing is something that will mostly effect a new player in the AH game, giving them a bad experience and turning them off altogether.

    I know you have said you are only doing it to enhance your own enjoyment but have you thought of the effect you are having on others?

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  15. @Faid of course sorry, Critical often loses his temper reading bad Blog Posts and watching whinging Scribes. Your House Rules are final after all.

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  16. @Brent: I'm not sure how long it will last. It's not my "new mantra" to be sure. When the time comes that I get bored with this I'll likely just leave the glyph market altogether. Glyphs bore me terribly; I'm interested in this because of the new experience I'm getting in a market I thought I knew all about. Once I feel I've learned what I want I'll probalby give up glyphs. Not sure how long it will last. We'll see! :)

    @Banker: "I know you have said you are only doing it to enhance your own enjoyment but have you thought of the effect you are having on others?"

    I rolled a new character for a while on an entirely new server during my WoW "break," just to get a change of scenery. It was a little Arms warrior. As soon as I unlocked glyphs I went to the Auction House and found that if I wanted to get a Glyph of Mortal Strike I would pay 80g.

    Many players say this is a decent rate to pay, and I'm inclined to agree. However, if I had no real gold making knowledge, if I were really just a new player who wanted a glyph then tell me: Was that glyph seller thinking of me? Did they take into account the needs of new players? Do they realize the bad experience they're making for new players who can barely afford repairs+flight paths+bags let alone a glyph selling for more than they've earned in their entire playtime?

    No, they don't think about the new players. Granted, I'm not saying they should. But why is the double standard in place that my making something more affordable makes me a dick, while a player charging more than a new player could afford is apparently "doing it right?" Why is the person selling for 150g for profit more righteous than my selling for 30g, considering they both have negative impacts on some players, and positive impacts on others?

    The answer is simple: I'm taking a stance that is unpopular to gold makers and so I'm a bad guy in their eyes.

    However, considering the whispers I've received from level 30somethings thanking me for the cheap glyphs I think not everyone agrees that I'm doing a terrible thing. :)

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  17. Sorry, I did not make myself clear. I was not talking about the new players to the game in general, I was talking about people like us, AH players.

    Someone new to the AH game will probably either go one of two ways, Glyphs or Gems.

    I think we can agree that both markets take a considerable amount of "play time" in order to start generating a good income stream, hours of processing, hours at the AH etc...

    A new player into the Glyph market with someone else that is happy to post for a 5g profit per glyph....

    I just cant see them continuing, that is a lot of "play time" for very little return.

    I agree new players (to the game) must love you, after all you are giving up your time (processing etc.) so they don't have to.

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  18. @Banker: I understood you meant new AH players. I was just trying to contrast that against new players in general. While I agree with you this may make a poor situation for new AH players the flipside is that it's a great time to be a glyph consumer.

    I think its important to understand that I'm not doing this because of a moral motivation; I'm doing it because it interests me, the exact thing that got me into gold-making in the first place. However, most people seem to be harping on the moral issue of ruining markets. I guess my point is that, if you want to look at it from a moral standpoint you should also be looking at it from the point of non-AH players.

    I feel that many people here, not just yourself, are worried about what this does to the market and implying that I have a moral obligation to cultivate high-profit margins or GTFO. I'm pointing out that, if you want to talk about benefiting others, I feel that lower glyph prices benefit more people than high glyph prices do. So if the greatest good for the greatest number is what most people consider "right," which I think is a common feeling to hold, then I'm in the right here.

    People worry about the other glyph sellers that I'm impacting with this. However, I put money on the fact most of these people have undercut their competitors. That's par for the course with glyphs. So why do people care about my competitors while kicking dirt in the face of their competitors regularly?

    Does that make sense? I hope that wasn't too rambly, this conversation interests me a lot so I keep tabbing out of Dead Island so yeah, I've got zombies on the brain. (Haha pun.)

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  19. To put Faid's 30g into perspective, I am about to put a 18g ceiling on glyphs for a month, may head down to 15g.

    Yes, I am messing with my market. In terms of sales, I still wont make many, as I fully expect to be immeditely undercut - in fact I'm counting on it.

    Even at 18g, I'm making profit. Not much but some. 30g is still about 50% profit on top of herb prices, or about 25% profit on top of ink prices.

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  20. I do have to agree there is a lot of hypocrisy complaining this will take away income from scribes with busy Real Lives when these scribes themselves have no problems taking gold at ripoff prices from poor Buyers who have busy Real Lives too.

    Have you high priced sellers thought about the effect You have on others? I would love to hear your answers.

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  21. Perhaps it is because I don't understand your motivation (and the motivation of the player on my realm that does the same).

    In your origional post you talked of how people on your server would say things "Don't buy from Faid, just bring me herbs and I'll make you whatever glyph you want." and "I want to prove that scribes can make a profit without overcharging customers on the AH."

    That sounds like you were feeling bad that people not likeing you makeing gold off them so you decided to alter the Glyph market is such a way that people will stand outside the AH and yell "All hail Faid, our great glyph saviour".

    After re-reading your post, it certaly seems to come off that way while I am a fan of the scheool of thought that "Supply and Demand" is probably the best way to set my prices.

    So, in order to help me understand better, what is your motivation to post your auctions with this priceing structure? When I first saw someone posting like this I thought it was so squeese others out of the market (or turn them off the market altogether), I read your post and it seemed like you were trying to be better liked.... now I dont know.

    Is it just an experiment to see if Socialism works in WoW?

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  22. @Foo u know, im still waiting for u to admit I was right and that the Critical method would work on your server.

    http://foo-wow.blogspot.com/2011/07/critical-goblins-deep-undercut-comment.html

    No matter how u try to disguise your floors and ceilings, I still see the CG method that you inadvertently (or otherwise) helped to patent =).

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  23. @Banker: No, I don't feel bad about the gold I make. Nor do I think scribes who are charging higher are doing it wrong or should be ashamed. I was just bringing that up to point out that there are people who don't care about making profit, but that they didn't have the infrastructure set up to compete.

    Plus I'm posting on an entirely different character from which I used to sell on (This level of market management was a headache across two accounts so I moved the posting from my usual selling toon to my Scribe) so I don't really think anyone cares.

    There are a lot of people on my server who like me, and there are probably a few more than that that hate me and/or think I'm a joke. But I don't care because they're strangers in a video game and we're talking about video game items for video game gold. They can have whatever opinion they want of me.

    My motivation is to have fun, nothing more. There are a lot of side-effects of that, which could include people leaving the market, people liking me, people hating me. But that's all inconsequential. I want to have a fun new experience, and I find this experience fun and new.

    I have no ulterior motives, I have no end goal. I have no grand plan with a million phases. I am not setting out specifically to hurt anyone (Admittedly, this was sparked by an annoying competitor, but it's grown much more and I couldn't care less about that competitor at this point,) I just want to enjoy myself and this causes me enjoyment.

    I'm unsure why everyone is trying to make my motives more than what they are. :S I've never been a "big plan" kind of gold maker, I'm not sure why everyone assumes I started to be one now. I've always just done whatever brought me the most fun. For a long time the "most fun" translated into that good feeling when I open up my mailbox to thousands of gold. Well, that's lost its shine, so now I've followed the fun elsewhere.

    I don't think that people are understanding I have no moral motivation, no matter how many times I say it. I admit I talk a lot about the benefits that buyers get out of my efforts, but that is only to offset the accusations of many that I'm ruining the time of buyers.

    I'm just in it for fun. :D

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  24. Hahaha... these comments are hilarious.

    "This to me is just you messing with the market."

    Of course! That is the whole point, I would imagine. I never stop and think about the sort of day that low-resil shaman was having before I steamrolled him in the AB game. In fact, that is part of the fun of PvP, knowing that there is another human being raging at their computer monitor somewhere in Iowa.

    You probably don't need any encouragement Faid, but keep it up! Screwing around with the AH markets was something that sustained my game long past the point where I could spend my 500k. And bottom line, it's a lot better for the actual end-user than all these wannabe Saudi princes trying to guilt you into collusion.

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  25. @Faid. It might actually take a fair bit of time to dig through all my posts, so it will probably be easier to "nutshell" it for you.

    Essentially, 4.0 changed the glyph market. We all know this, I'm not arguing that. However, the vast majority of scribes have only adapted their approach in regards to pricing. Other than that, they pretty much do exactly the same thing they were doing before. There are serious flaws with this methodology. Yes, the changes Blizzard made to glyphs naturally increased their value, however, it also changed your buyers, both their mentality and their availability. Most scribes won't consider their buyers. In fact, most AH players in most markets won't consider their buyers, but that's perhaps another topic for another day.

    With glyphs, you essentially have 3 major buying categories: Mains, Alts, and New players. I think it's fair to say that this far into the expansion, Mains are covered. They were basically glyphmas, and we thank them greatly for that ;). That really leaves us with alts and new players - and if you supply them with glyphs faster than they become available, you'll run out of buyers, no matter how cheap you sell your glyphs for. On most servers, if you really think about it, will have remembered experiencing this phenomenon somewhere between 4.1 and 4.2. Without a major content release in 4.1, most players jumped back onto alts faster then they would have after Cata release. Once they bought their glyphs, they had no further need for scribes.

    The problem with pushing too hard and too fast with glyphs is that, unlike consumables and item enhancements, fresh content doesn't bring a wave of customers knocking down our doors. New raid tiers are great for the other crafting professions, but glyphs are a one-hit wonder now. This is also why it is so critical to milk as much profit from glyphs as you possibly can, and why you need to take drastic measures against your competition. Unless you can get an accurate read on the pulse of your server's growth rate, your best bet is to make your gold form glyphs TODAY, because tomorrow might be too late.

    Hope that clears it up some :)

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  26. @Kath no offense but TMI.

    Faid has done well simplifying her whole glyph game to basically:
    - make all glyphs
    - never out of stock (personally I recommend 20 per glyph because a 20 stack takes the same space as a 10 stack)
    - adjust single price to your mood ie dont wasting time differentiating between "good" glyphs and "bad" glyphs

    The only thing she's missing (or does but I havnt read about) is:
    - multi walls eg floors/ceilings or low/high ceilings whatever u want to call them. This stops "smart" cookies from buying out 10x 30g glyphs and getting a single 300g sale + 9 free glyphs.

    Booya. The sea just became a lake.

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  27. @Critical Goblin.

    Well, it was information that Faid asked for too much of ;)

    Also, you clearly missed the point if all you took away from that was to throw back a strategy for differently priced walls and stockpile numbers.

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  28. Ugh still learning to control myself sorry. I should really learn a new profession.

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  29. Hitting a plateau makes you want to unload your stockpile of glyphs onto the auction house.

    Posting glyphs for 30g each is not the only remedy. You profit less and work more. How is that a solution?

    Plateauing: to remain at a stable level for a relatively long period
    of time. The plateau is boring.

    Experiments you could try:

    *Sell glyphs to other glyph sellers for crafting cost.
    *Sell only glyphs made from shimmering ink.
    *Sell glyphs on odd days.
    *Buy out cheap glyphs and sell them for 30g.


    >Critical Goblin learn to constructively critique, because if anyone sounds like a whiner you do.

    Did anyone read about new tanking glyphs?

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  30. @Saffronia: I'm not sure we're on the same level of understanding he3re. I'm not vomitting my glyph stock onto the AH in boredom, I'm continously producing stock to fuel my current efforts.

    This activity does not bore me, and is, in fact, the most fun I've had in glyphs in a long time.

    While your suggestions may be interesting some day, this is very fun for me, why would I change that?

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  31. After reading this wall of text I think I'm starting to understand.

    I think the reason this sparked so much interest is because people didn't understand the motivation to your strategy. I mean this is a gold making blog :D

    I tought, ok, if she's not out to make gold, then what? Since you, in your original post, talked about prices being obscenely high i figured (along with a lot others) that it had to be a moral standpoint you were taking. After reading all your replies I gather that it's just to do something new? Which makes my original post void ;)

    But if that's the reasoning we at least want to know the lessons you've learned and if you're still making any profit ;)

    @CG Critical is fine, but calling people whiners and lazy is hardly a sober argument :P

    <3 Swoosh - Thunderhorn EU

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  32. "Scribes willing to continue in the market: Reasonable profit." Reasonable, according to YOU.

    "They were ridiculous. I actually was kind of offended that people were charging so much." This "offense" is a moral judgement on your part.

    "I feel that, bottom line, a fair price to pay for any item is whatever both parties, fully knowledgeable in the agreement, are willing to agree upon.

    However, there's no reason they need to charge so much." The amazing thing is that these statements that are so contradictory in spirit (caveat emptor v. moral hand-wringing) are actually consecutive sentences.

    "I want to prove that scribes can make a profit without overcharging customers on the AH." How can there be such a thing as overcharging, if you TRULY believe in the "both parties, fully knowledgeable in the agreement" free market???

    "I'm here to create a change on Argent Dawn..." Glad I moved... This is one step away from crony capitalism, in that there is no government entity - you are filling that role by establishing price controls.

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  33. @Dancingblade: Yes, reasonable according to me. I can't really state anyone else's opinion so I assume it was implied that it was by my standards that I deem it a reasonable profit. My stance is that there is loss, no change, and profit. If I forced the market to be a loss for everyone that would kind of suck, but it's my choice if I want to do that.

    If I force the market to the point everyone can compete but no one can profit (no change) that would suck, but it's my choice if I want to do that.

    If I force the market to a point where the profit margin is limited but existent that will suck for some sellers, but not for others. You never enter a market guaranteed it will bring you a profit and there's nothing forcing you to stay in a market you don't like.

    If people find the profits they are gaining from glyphs at 30g or less not worth their time they can say "Hey, this is unreasonable" and they can find another market. It's just like every other market in the game.

    I find I'm making a reasonable profit on my investment. I don't have special tricks or dedicated suppliers; I buy 95% of my herbs off the AH. I don't have anyone else mill or glyph for me, I am a one-woman glyph machine. That said, what I am doing is entirely within the grasp of any other player and it gives me a reasonable return. Therefor this is reasonable. If people disagree because the judge by a different standard then it's unreasonable to them, I don't dispute that, but that doesn't mean it's altogether unreasonable.

    "This "offense" is a moral judgement on your part."

    Yep. While my actions are not neccesarily seated in moral issues I do not deny that I've been offended in the past. You see, I'm a human being and, like all human beings, have many different thoughts and feelings. I can have multiple contrasting opinions about the same issue. Just because I have a moral issue with the way some people act in a situation doesn't mean I feel I must go on a crusade to change their ways.

    I, for one, am offended when people don't say thank you or acknowledge me after I hold the door open for them.

    That does not mean that I have begun berating anyone who does not thank me. In fact, I still hold doors open for everyone I can. Having a moral disapproval of something does not necessarily mean you are driven to any of your actions specifically because of said disapproval.

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  34. "The amazing thing is that these statements that are so contradictory in spirit (caveat emptor v. moral hand-wringing) are actually consecutive sentences."

    I believe my previous point carries over here. You see, as I stated previously, I feel that any price a buyer is willing to pay is thus considered a fair price.

    I'm not sure you really understood my post though. You see, my point isn't "They don't need to so they shouldn't and I'm going to force that upon them." The point is "They don't need to charge that much. Hell, even I don't need to charge that much. I wonder what it would be like to charge less, and how that would impact the markets? Let's find out . . ."

    "How can there be such a thing as overcharging, if you TRULY believe in the "both parties, fully knowledgeable in the agreement" free market???"

    I guess it depends on your definition of overcharging, and I have to admit mine may not be right as I use it as a layman term. Perhaps a rephrase is in order: "I want to prove that I can make a profit without charging far above and beyond the crafting price and instead by charging much less over the crafting cost of the glyph."

    Sorry if overcharging was a poor word to use, I imagine to some that may have been taken from a subjective "charging too much" standpoint (which I can certainly see why it would be read that way!) when I intended it to be "charging more than is necessary to turn a profit."

    "Glad I moved... This is one step away from crony capitalism, in that there is no government entity - you are filling that role by establishing price controls."

    You say that like it's a bad thing. :) The markets in a WoW economy don't really have many limiting factors on them. You can charge almost whatever you want for anything you can sell. While this can create an atmosphere where people feel free to post items for 20x the crafting cost those people should just as well know that, in such a free market, it is just as likely that someone will come in with a WalMart "sell everything, sell it cheap" mantra to compete with them.

    I don't pretend to know a lot about economics, markets, etc. I'm a layman who has pretty poor math skills and no real history of careful planning. I'm a "don't measure, cut twice" kinda girl.

    So I'm afraid I can't pull out awesome terminology or economic theory to back me up. All I can say is that this is how I look at it:

    Bob, Karen, and Todd all are allowed to sell whatever they want at whatever price they wish. Bob, Karen, and Todd compete with one another to get the sale. Though they are constantly undercutting one another prices remain rather high.

    Alison comes in. Alison could play the same way Bob, Karen, and Todd do, selling everything high and playing the undercutting game. However, Alison wishes to do something different. Alison sees she can sell her items at a much lower price and she will enjoy selling to her customers even though her profits aren't high as Bob, Karen, and Todd.

    Alison is doing what Alison wants and having fun, just like Bob, Karen, and Todd were doing. They've all enjoyed the exact same market freedom; Alison just chose to exercise that freedom in a different way.

    Bob, Karen, and Todd don't like what Alison did to their game and they are now upset at Alison, telling her she's ruining markets or doing it wrong and please, think of the other glyph sellers!


    All Alison wonders is why Bob, Karen, and Todd are suddenly so worried about other sellers that even they had been undercutting constantly before she came along. Why are they suddenly so upset with Alison for exercising the same freedom within the market that they themselves enjoy? Do they really think Alison believes they care about the other sellers she knows they were undercutting and biting at for months and even years before Alison came along?

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  35. Who the hell cares. It's a game. If you don't like it, take your ball and go play somewhere else. Hell, I'll roll and level a toon on a.d. Just cuz I know it'll be cheap glyphs.

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  36. Critical and Foo have the right of it.

    Play the game the way you want. The louder the complaints from the competition get the more effective you strategy is.

    For all the naysayers you do the math and then tell us if it's better to sell 100 a day for 20g profit each or 2 a day for 100g profit each.

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  37. I should point out the first time I used a similar strategy I sold over 500k worth of glyphs in a week. Mostly to one guy who kept buying mine out at 30g and jacking the price back up to 200g+.

    It took him a whole week to realize that he couldn't buy me out. ;)

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  38. @MoxNix - It IS better to sell 2 @ 100g than 100 @ 20g. Lets look at why:

    100 glyphs will take you 300 seconds to craft.
    100 glyphs will require 300 ink which will take 600 seconds to craft.
    300 Ink will require approx. 200 milling casts which will take 200 seconds.
    If we assume 30 seconds of fixed travel time, 1 seconds per "post" and 0.5 seconds for mail retrieval, then 100 glyphs will take approx. 1280 seconds from start to finish. For a return of 2000g, you need to put in 1280 seconds worth of effort, which means you are earning 1.56g/sec.

    On the flip side, 2 glyphs will require approx. 55 seconds worth of effort (6 for glyphs, 12 for ink, 4 for milling, 30 for travel, 2 for posting and 1 for mail). At a 200g return, you would be making 3.63g/sec.

    That's not even factoring in profit margins, which will swing even further in favour of "less glyphs at higher margins".

    When you combine that with the fact that all that extra time can easily be spent in better markets, selling glyphs at 20g is a waste of time.

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  39. @Kathroman: Definitely a good way to look at it, but it's probably also important to point out that not everyone approaches the time investment from the same standpoint.

    For example, this semester I'm taking a film class to fulfill an art credit for my bachelor. (HATE most art classes.) We must watch several films per week and so I spend a significant amount of time sitting at my computer. While I could work in other markets, the bulk crafting, ease of using TSM, and the added convenience now of Consortium's auto hotkey setup, makes glyphs a clear choice for something to spend this time doing. I can't dedicate myself to efficiently farming since I need to be taking notes and writing thoughts on the films, but I can easily click Craft Next, ya know?

    So, while I do spend a large chunk of time crafting glyphs, I don't feel that I invest much time in it since that time wouldn't be spent doing much else.

    I imagine, then, that the way I factor in the time to craft, post, etc. would be much different from the person who doesn't have all of the addons set up, nor the "semi-afk time" and instead is taking time they would have been doing something else to make glyphs.

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  40. @Faid - "I can't dedicate myself to efficiently farming since I need to be taking notes and writing thoughts on the films, but I can easily click Craft Next, ya know?"

    The point wasn't whether someone was able to spend that amount of time or not, it was that it wasn't the best use of ANY sort of time to begin with. There are literally 100's of different recipes you could be clicking "Craft Next" for - the point is that 20g glyphs is rarely going to be one of them...

    The degree to which you will be "investing" your time will always be always be bound to the quality of said investment.

    If you are able to pay attention, there will be more profitable things you can be doing that require you attention. If you can't, then there are also more profitable things you can be doing that don't.

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  41. @Kathroman: I understand what you're saying and where you're coming from. I guess it sort of comes down to what you feel you're able to concentrate on. Given the amount of attention I can afford to pay to crafting I've found that glyphs are the easiest and most profitable venture given the quality of attention I can pay toward the game at the time of crafting.

    If you have more profitable items you feel you can craft at that point then certainly you're right, glyphs aren't the best choice. I'm my situation I feel that they are the best choice that share the most important qualities: things I am able to do, things that will make gold, and things that involve a market I want to be in.

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  42. @Kathroman

    first off

    2x100 = 200g
    100x20 = 2000g

    I'm not sure in what world 200g is better than 2000g but in this world
    2000g is better than 200g by a factor of 10.

    Profit margins are overrated. Total profits are much higher in bulk sales... Just ask Costco.

    You're making a lot of poor assumptions about the time involved too.

    Mail retrieval time is irrelevant because it takes about 5 seconds of MY time to run to the mailbox and click "open all", the rest is afk time.

    Posting time is mostly afk time too. Click post, walk away from the computer for a few minutes. Come back and spam a button for a minute or so.

    Cancelling time is irrelevant too. When using low walls for bulk sales you just leave them up.

    Milling is done while watching movies, football and hockey games. I don't even look at the computer screen while milling.

    You're assuming I could spend the time in "better markets". Wrong. I'm already big in all the better markets.

    It was not a waste of my time. It's efficient use of my time. Mostly afk crafting and posting once a day. An extra 2000g a day might not be a whole lot but it's nothing to sneeze at either.

    Finally the low priced glyphs eventually had the desired effect. I can sell glyphs at much higher prices now without getting undercut instantly because the other scribes finally understand exactly what will happen if they don't let me sell some glyphs too.

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