Why You (Possibly) Don't Need Auctioneer Scans

Many of the top auctioneers I know have stopped performing auction house scans for a long time.

These players don’t use auctioneer scans because they…
  • …Know their markets so well that they can search for mats and review prices manually a lot faster than it takes to run a scan. Depending on the number of markets this could happen pretty quickly for most auctioneers.
  • …Prefer to flip a few big name items while allowing an untold number of smaller flips to go untouched.
  • …Use addons like QA3 which are doing the posting and not auctioneer, so why keep a scan going to maintain the database when it’s not the one posting?
Why then Markco do you tell people to download and start using auctioneer religiously? (And how do you manage to get into the third person during so many of your posts?)

Well, and I apologize for talking in the third person but it’s just too much fun, the simple fact is that like anything in life you need to start somewhere before you can take off and become an expert. Auctioneer does exactly what these ah players are doing in their heads: tracking prices, cycles and related values. Once you see the numbers enough you can do this as well and save time, but until then you’re going to have to rely on a machine to take care of it for you. If you really hate addons well you could theoretically keep track of all the data on excel spreadsheets or even on pen and paper but it's going to slow your growth as an auctioneer.

It's also worth noting that you should still have auctioneer even if you don't use the scanning, various searches and snatch features. The PCT column and other sorting mechanisms alone are worth the addon's weight in gold.

Now if you’re a player who enjoys the “fishing-like” nature of running scans and putting out bids/buyouts on random items then using auctioneering is a time saver. If you’re into profession crafting and material management for more reliable income then you can probably give up on auctioneer once you’ve learned the markets well enough.

Image taken from Starcraft 2 "scanner sweep."

19 comments: on "Why You (Possibly) Don't Need Auctioneer Scans"

  1. For the most part I agree. I have just been scanning my main markets looking for deals instead of scanning the auctionhouse. However i still feel as if the scan is worth while if you have done the rest of your postings. There are often items in markets you may not touch that can be woefully underpriced. Just the other day I picked up 10 stacks of small eggs for 5 silver a stack. Come Xmas that's 400-500g worth give or take.

  2. I also am a little tired of scans.
    Its faster to check saronite ore, frozen orbs, frost weave cloth, borean leather...those are the most used by crafters mats.

  3. The "doing in their head" point is important. If people begin using the Remote AH, that product knowledge gives the confidence to buy/sell in an environment where you can't rely on mods.

  4. Another good thing about 'keep scanning' is when you don´t know that other market.
    I mean.... you running a raid or heroic and a BoE drops? Auctioneer helps you evaluate if its a good idea to DE or roll greed.
    /Trade as well.... You never know when a bargain pop up, so Auctioneer helps it!
    Good AH pvpers always keep his eyes sharp... Auctioneer is a good scout for me.
    Ie. Last week I bought BoE epic tank gun for 1/2 its price from trade channel.

  5. I'm not sure how to properly use the auctioneer search functions without performing a GetAll Scan first

    Is there a faster way and skip the scan?

  6. When I started blogging I consistently ran auctioneers scans. Twice a day if not more usually. This allowed me get a good foot hold on the prices for the markets I chose to participate now. However, with the expansion winding down, and me not looking at new markets that much any more I just manual search for prices of things. I also manually search for items I snatch up. It's quicker this way. I know the majority of us always log on in the morning before work and you want to save as much time as possible.

  7. Is there a difference between pressing the Scan button that takes around 15 minutes or pressing the quick getall scan? Is the information different?

  8. I use auctionlite, I find the interface much more useful and easier to buy things in bulk and work with skillet.
    Other than that, I use QA for glyphs, gems, scrolls, vellums, engy pets, BoEs, thread, anything I sell pretty much.
    I also use MySales to track, um, my sales.
    Auctioneer has always been too large an bloated for my taste.

  9. I've recently stopped using Auctioneer in favor of Auctionator. I still get the benefits of scaning the entire auction house but in a handful of seconds, and also comes with the 'detect undercuts' feature. Also, Auctionator isn't a resource drain.

    What's more, I only deal in goods that I can modify through professions, and at this point I have five, so some of my scan data goes to waste.

    And yes, many times I find myself only scaning a few markets, like you though, when your just starting up, full scans are invaluable.

  10. Only gripe I have with auctioneer is that when I run either scan, when i minimize the game to go read blogs or email, during the scan phases, it stops altogether and doesn't resume the scan until I maximize the game again. WTF? It can't run in the background while the game is minimized. I play WoW in fullscreen mode. Does anyone know if it does this also in windowed mode?

  11. Yeah, after some time Auctioneer doesn't seem as useful as it once was. I guess it's similar to every other thing in life. First, you need some tools to get used to it all, but after a while you can do it yourself with no help!

    @Cold:
    In windowed mode you won't have that problem. ;)

  12. I run WoW in Linux and it allows for addons to keep running when I tab out and go do something else. This is extremely helpful, as you can imagine. :)

  13. @Anonymous, Re: GetAll
    GetAll and Scan (that has run for the full duration) are effectively the same for a basic user. Obviously the GetAll method is faster but because of this it puts more strain on the server and Blizzard restrict addons from using it more than once every 15 minutes. The Scan button gives you something to use until you can use GetAll again.

    More advanced users may point out Search Triggers as a notable difference. Auctioneer can be configured to alert you - as you're scanning - when it has found something of interest (for example, an item on your snatch list). When using the GetAll method you must perform your search manually after the scan is complete. On my server I can't think of a market that needs you to scan more than once every 15m but perhaps this is useful if you are battling another auctioneer or something.

    Anyway, if you want to know more about it behind the scenes you can always browse through the WoW API as well:
    http://www.wowwiki.com/API_QueryAuctionItems

    On Topic:
    I find that the market on my server is far too volatile at the moment to rely simply upon the pricing data that auctioneer returns from scans. With so many people dumping stock and with Cataclysm just around the corner it's going to take at least until January for the market to start stabilising again.

    During this period of instability it's very important people use common sense (especially with bulk purchases) and to watch sites like this one for information about upcoming changes in Cataclysm.

  14. Big fan of Auctionator. I couldn't stand the Auctioneer UI and it was just too much for what I needed to do. I can make shopping lists and just click through my saved list of most flipped mats. It also sets a price itself so its less typing.

    Auctionator has helped me flip 1000g into 4000g in just under a month. That also includes a Cold Weather flying Tome purchase and tons of other expenses so I probably turned my 1000g into more like 7000-8000g.

    Just My Two Copper and Auctionator FTW.

    That Abyss Crystal tip (stacks of 10) is working like a charm on my server too.

    Thanks!

  15. I use auctioneer only for my snatch list and that's all. I don't feel like scrolling manually through 30ish different items.

    quick scan (2-3 minutes) then i buy all the items that pop up on my snatch list.

    But that's the only thing i use from auctioneer.

  16. Auctioneer guided me into the workings of the AH. Without it it would have taken me alot longer to learn. However, now I still use it, but I rely more readily on the prices I know to be correct for my server. I play the AH like many raid and have amassed huge amounts of gold in a short time by doing one thing and one thing only. Buying and Reselling on the AH. Not meaning to sound cocky but any other way is nutzo.

  17. I use Auctionator and QA3 to post my crafted goods and I'm gold capped. However every time I tried Auctioneer the "quick" scans take in upward of 20 minutes, hanging on the 2nd and last phase to the point where its ridiculous.

    I tried to disable all addons and install the latest one. My PC runs wow perfectly, so what can be the problem?

    I tried all the tips I could find, including raising/lowering the priority of Auctioneer. Any tips?

  18. started doing that now, i rarely have a need for scaner now i just go to my given area and go to work.

    but i still use it to find new markets for that little special something.

  19. QA3 is great - as long as SOMEONE is running auctioneer or some other tool that does averages and stats.

    I can see it now as I enter some new markets, there are 3 bots that do nothing but QA3 posts of the items at 350g each, when they obviously won't sell for more than 60g each (which is 40g profit).
    Now that I've explored the what-the-market-will-bear line and picked a good price slightly below it that moves quickly, the QA3 bots are taking advantage of my knowledge. It kind of pisses me off - if I weren't there they'd be making NOTHING, in fact losing money due to fees. But now that I'm there they can bot their way to sales with my Auctioneer data.

    I'd really like to see an article (or references) about combating bots. Right now I'm considering less than respectable solutions, like mailing them 100 gray items.

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