Greedy Goblin

Sunday, January 4, 2009

The industry

What you see on the picture is the inventory of Triara, my bankalt with the job of distributing glyphs.

This business is my main workhorse with 1000-1500G/day income for 200-400G/day investment, mostly risk free, 30-60 min/2 days work.

There are two questions to answer. At first, why glyphs and not BS stuff or cloth items? The answer is simple: tailors, BS, LW and so on have only a few items to mass produce for sale. The other items are either useless, or mass produced by others for skillups, or having CD so cannot be mass produced. On the other hand inscription has lot of glyphs and all and every one of them are useful for someone. Don't forget that while monsters drop cloth armor, all glyphs come from inscribes.

The other reason for it is low absolute profit. An epic LW item's materials cost 1000-1500G, so even if the crafter wants just 10-20% profit, we are talking about 100-300G. This big profit has two negative effects, at first all other crafters want it, undercutting you, secondly it's big enough for the buyer to try to avoid it by buying mats and searching for a crafter for 10-20G tip. On the other hand glyphs cost 2-3G materials, so even 1000%!!! profit means only 20-30G. Most people won't spam trade channel to save this money or bother crafting and listing. On the top of that, glyphs have complicated materials since the inks need herbs but you don't know how much ink you get from herbs so to "have mats" one would have to bring double herbs just to be sure.

The second question is how on earth can I manage this inventory? Pretty simply with proper addons. The cycle is the following:
  • All the unsold glyphs return from the AH to Triara's backpack. Since I list them together, they return together. If I listed some extra, I cancel those auctions, so all my glyphs are in the backpack.
  • I have an addon called Possessions. It builds a database of what item is owned by my alts. I have another addon called WhoHas, it uses the mentioned database and displays it on the item tooltips.
  • I log to my main and open crafting window. The LilSparky's workshop addon shows the price of the items. If this price is below 10G, I ignore the item. If the price is OK, I select the item and mouseover its icon.
  • WhoHas write ownership on the tooltip. If it says "Triara has 3" or more, I ignore the item.
  • If Triara has 1-2, I craft enough to have 5.
  • If Triara has 0, it means all sold out, I craft 7.
  • After I checked every glyphs, I send the crafted glyphs to Triara. The result can be seen on the picture.
  • Triara list them on the AH one-by-one, for 48 hours, using Auctioneer market price, 40% undercut (deflating market, have to undercut deep). Today I listed 923 glyph auctions. I don't have to post every item one-by-one, since they are selected for Batch Posting.
  • The second day the original listing's time expires, I collect the sold auctions from the mailbox, and the cycle starts again.


Anonymous said...

Very valuable and informative. Keep it up. I luv coming here each day to see a new post.

I guess I should not be surprised that scribes have so many options of items to sell. I'm going to reevaluate my DK's professions and see if it'd be worth it to change either Tayloring or Jewelcrafting most likely tayloring for Inscribtion.

EffroTool said...

Do you plan on any investments in the upcoming patch? I mean esspecialy enchanting market. Recent posts at MMO-Champion ( got a list of changes to recipes. As can be seen there will be more demand for dream shards. On the other hand dust and essences will be in less demand. So it's quite an obvious move to stop investing into them and as was mentioned many times before to stack on those shard and wait for patch. Also it seems eternal earth is going to be of more use now, as it's require for two tanking enchants. But is it really worth investing gold into that now? Or won't we see high demand on them?

Sun CRm said...

nice and wise. you have brains :)

Gevlon said...

@Grzegorz: I've already written about it, however thanks for the link.

Anonymous said...

How much hours do you play WOW for a day out fo curiosity?

EffroTool said...

@Gevlon: Right, kinda missed that one a bit during all this holiday time. Or just didn't bother back there as on mine server dust and essencess well holding quite well. Untill now that is...

Gevlon said...

@Esdras: I play a lot, but the AH is a really small portion. I mostly quest. The AH is less than an hour/day.

Anonymous said...

I've made about 100k from inscription; my strategy was mostly like yours though I post 1-2 glyphs at a time undercutting, logging in several times throughout the day (working from home helps). If you do it only once or every other day your glyphs likely end up undercut and don't sell.

90% of the old major glyphs are not worth it -- exceptions are (were?) Death Knight glyphs and for some reason, Glyph of Rip which few people want to sell and so it stays at 20 even 30g.

I find the fastest way to checking current prices is to use the Appraiser tab just after having rescanned the AH (you can press Control-Click on the Glyph category and press the Play button to scan just Glyphs, which is faster than /auc getall). That's for the newer "Advanced" auctioneer.

Most minor glyphs still sell well enough -- I don't sell under 10g and rarely under 20g. Around Christmas prices skyrocketed (if an equal proportion of scribes and consumers went on vacation why did the price go up so much?).

The new researched glyphs from Northrend fetched a high price for a while, but now too many people have them (until then I sold 50-100 Frostfire & Molten Armor glyphs for perhaps 50-100g each).

I expect the new dual-talent patch to be an interesting time for scribes -- everyone will have two sets of talent choices to switch between, and also a set of glyphs. Perhaps many of the "tanking" glyphs like Glyph of Sunder Armor, that currently go for as little as 5s will go up in price.

Tobold said...

glyphs cost 2-3G materials

No, they don't. Or rather they may cost 2-3 gold in materials on your side and server, but might cost up to 10 gold on other servers. On my server a stack of herbs still costs 40 gold or more, and yields only enough ink for 4 to 5 glyphs. Glyphs on AH are 10 to 15 gold, so the possibility to make profit obviously varies wildly from server to server.

The big problem with glyphs is that the market is small. People don't buy all that many glyphs, usually just 6 per character once, and then never change them. So it was a good business to be in at the start, but right now even one inscriber can easily provide all the glyphs his whole side/server needs.

Gevlon said...

@tobold: Not all glyphs are made of Northrend herbs. For example most DK herbs come from Outland herbs selling for 3-4G/stack. Ink of the Sea is expensive if you mill it yourself, around 7-8G. However if you buy up everything that sad Darkmoon Producers pured to the AH, you can get them below 2G.

Also check all herbs before buying one. Adder's tongue and Deadnettle use to be cheap for me, of course it differs by servers.

Unknown said...

so you post auctions every two days and do actually sell stuff? wtb a server like that

you forgot to mention that deposit price for glyphs are very low and because of that people will undercut you right and left.

Anonymous said...

Is there a newer version of the Possessions mod? It looks cool, but it tosses out an error message whenever I open the window.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the great info! Business isn't quite what you see but it's been good none the less. I post on average 750 or so glyphs every 48 hours.

Anonymous said...

How many people are in your server horde side? How you can sell 100-150 glyphs EVERYDAY?

Where you found that much people who buy glyphs everyday? I can sell just 10-30/day.

Ben said...

Great Post, i was wondering though, glyphs on my server only run for around 17g, would it be better to buy out glyphs im making and then put my glyphs up for 30g? Whats your advice?

THRiLL KiLL said...

Tobold said:

"The big problem with glyphs is that the market is small. People don't buy all that many glyphs, usually just 6 per character once, and then never change them."

before patch 3.0.8 this was not true. there were alot of people that would spec during the week for pve, and then on the weekends respec for raiding or pvp. on each respec they would have to re-buy the glyphs.

As of 3.0.8 with the dual specs, was there a sharp downturn on the glyph market, as people dont need to resepec anymore?

Brian said...

Do you have an easy way to collect your glyphs from the mailbox?

I've replicated your process on my server, and it works. The only part of the process that takes up my time the most has been collecting the expired glyphs from my mail box.

I have "MailGet" which allows me to "Take All", but the mail box only holds like 30 pieces of mail at a time, so when I have 700 items in the mail, I have to close the mail box and reopen it, clicking "Take All", about 20 times total.

Is there any mod that lets you do a total take all, that could grab all 700 of my mails at once?

Anonymous said...

I must say I thoroughly enjoyed this post and its been extremely helpful in setting up a glyph business. I was wondering how peoples pricing strategies have changed? I've noticed at least on my server Rivendare(Horde Side) even a 40% or 60% market undercut is not warding off other small time glyph producers. If anyone has any options on how to deal with this I'm all ears.

Anonymous said...

I don't understand why you look for 10g or more profit, then you undercut by 40%! That just leaves 6g on your part. Why don't you undercut 2% or something like that?

Anonymous said...

I've been reading your blog for a few months now, and I used my profits from speculating on patch 3.2 to powerlevel my DK's inscription.

Thanks very much for this post, with tools like this a bit of smart thinking, I'm hoping Inscrption will be as good to me as jewelcrafting has.

Anonymous said...

So are you fellow crazy glyphers still using a 2-day system like this?

On my server, glyphs are undercut with such speed and frequency that often within an hour I've been undercut pretty severely so mine just sit there languishing for the next 47 hours.

I've made quite a lot of profit so far just randomly pulling and relisting all my glyphs at different times in the day, but that's far too much work for a goblin way of thinking, eh?

Anonymous said...

I'm making around 2k every two days with this. I'll never hit goldcap but I never do dailies anymore. Cheers Gevlon!