Here goes one of those emails that is so good I let it stand on its own two feet. Please see 22 steps to auctioneer for information on vendor scans, or perhaps view the fully documented and detail oriented walkthrough in my cataclysm gold guide for searches with addons.
You will probably know about this, but since I haven't seen it on your blog (I might have well missed it), I thought it would be worth sharing.
There are some goods whose offer is (almost) always far above the demand. As sellers keep blindly undercutting each other (probably via miss-managed addon automation), the price of the auctions quickly falls below the vendor price. At this point, smart players may have two options:
1) Try to flip these goods: risk is low-medium, because of the low prices, but profit margin is also low, due to the continuous market flood.
2) Buy out and vendor the goods. Profit will normally be low, but the good thing is that risk isn't simply "low", but actually zero.
I have been doing (2) for a while and, although it didn't made me rich in two days, it's become a slightly noticeable bonus to my regular gold input. For example, last night there where several Super Healing Potion auctions going on, with the following pricings:
- Several posts of 20x, ranging from 12g to 20g.
- Some posts of 20x at 10g. -> Silly point: you won't get either a benefit nor a loss from buying these and vendoring them, but the seller is lossing money (due to deposits/AH cuts)!
- Several posts of 20x, at 9g and lower buyout -> Critical point reached! Vendor price for 20 "super" pots is 10g (50s/potion)
- Several posts of 1x, at 40-45s buyout -> Same as above, but many more clicks to buy them out.
I just netted ~30g last night in less than 5 minutes. This would be equivalent to a 360g/h ratio, which is not a great thing, but it was entirely risk-free.
The goods I have most often seen auction for less than the vendor price (on Darkmoon Faire EU, Alliance side) are these, but YMMV:
- Silk cloth (not bolts, not silk-sewen gear, but the cloths used to make bolts and bandages): vendor for 1s50c/each, 30s/stack. Sometimes they go as low as 5-10s/stack (that's a 200-500% profit!)
- Solid stone (the ones that drop off Mithril veins): Can go as low as 1-2s/stack, despite they vendor for 1s/each, 20s/stack (1900% profit margin is just so silly!)
- Super Healing Potions (these are the "outland" potions, lvl65 requirement, made from BC herbs): See above, can be found on the 5-10g/stack range, vendor for 10g/stack (50s/each). Super Mana Potions have the same vendor price, but tend to go at more reasonable prices at the AH, they may be worth taking a look at, but don't expect a great profit from them.
- Other healing and mana potions: these flow at a much wider price range; but when they fall below vendor price you can snatch them for the small, risk-free profit.
- BC/Outland and WotLK/Northrend uncommon gems: vendor for 25s uncut and BC cuts, 50s Northrend cuts, 1g perfect cuts. I have seen perfects going as low as 20s (400% profit). Note that this flows wildly as there are always people leveling their jewelcrafting. Uncut gems may be worth a flip attempt, depending on the market.
- There is another zero-risk oportunity here: if you have a JC (preferably with gem perfection), any uncommon Northrend gem is worth 50s on your hands (you can cut it, then vendor): you'll often find them for lower than that. Each time you get the "perfect gem" proc, add a bonus 50s to the mix.
- Other stuff: do your research -> know the market -> *own* the market ;-)
Again, these won't make you *a lot* of gold. However, they will make you *some* gold at *zero-risk*. Use this money (together with your questing income if you do quests) as a complement to your main gold input and to fund more risky ventures. Another advantage of this method is that it yields its benefits nearly instantly. If you need a bit of cash, here and now, approach the nearest AH and take a look for vendorable stuff.
(I'd rather stay anonymous!)"