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Insider Trader: Using Auction Profit Master and ZeroAuctions to sell

Insider Trader is a column about professions, written by Basil "Euripides" Berntsen, who also writes Gold Capped. Basil can't figure out a way to make this a full-sized post, so he's just going to write it here: the gold cap is 1 million now. Email Basil with your questions.

In my recent post about using addons to more efficiently craft, I promised that I'd explain how to use these same Quick Auctions-based addons to sell. The basic workings of both Auction Profit Master and ZeroAuctions are actually quite simple. You give it a list of items, and you give your list a pricing scheme. Each time you batch post, it goes through your inventory looking for items on your lists to post.

Pricing scheme?

Go ahead and type "/apm config" now. The first page that comes up is a list of all the options, including pricing options that will be used for the default pricing scheme. Let's take a look at these options before we go setting up any groups that will deviate from them. I'm only going to go over the important ones for now:
  • Auto-recheck mail is a general option that lets you go AFK while collecting mail. The server only delivers 50 mail per minute, so instead of opening your mail every 60 seconds to empty it, this option does it for you.
  • Smart cancelling is a general option that will only ask you to cancel auctions that have been undercut in such a way that you're prepared to undercut back.
  • Post cap is how many auctions you want to keep posted.
  • Per auction is the quantity per auction you will post.
  • Undercut by is pretty obvious, but remember that whenever you enter a value, you need to enter a number with a letter: "1s99c" is one silver, 99 copper.
  • Bid percent is usually 100, unless you have a reason to want to take a longer time to sell your stuff for less.
  • Threshold is the lowest price you're willing to sell for.
  • Maximum price gap is a feature that lets you ignore single, low-priced items. If someone walks into a market and posts a single auction at 5g when the rest of the market is at 70g, you may not want to undercut even though your threshold is below 5g. Setting this allows you to define when you will just ignore that low price and undercut the next lowest.
  • Fallback price is what you sell for if you have no competition, as well as when your competition is below your fallback and you've checked Enable auto fallback.
  • Maximum price is how much above your fallback you're willing to sell. If someone posts stock at a ridiculously high price, you don't necessarily want to blindly undercut him.
It should be noted that one of the weaknesses of these addons compared to many other alternates is that they can not post multiple stack sizes automatically. For any markets with a low number of sellable items (hopefully at a high volume), you will want to use another addon to manually post each stack size.

Now I know it may seem like I just gave you entirely too many options for pricing, but believe me when I tell you that (a.) you can get along quite well without messing too much with these, assuming you finish reading this, and (b.) every single option is useful. Keep this list open when you create your first group, and refer to it when you decide what you want to do. Click on the image to the right if you need help locating any of the options on the addon, and here's a sample set of values that you might see for, say, Adamantite Powder:
  • post cap of 20
  • per auction of 4 (because that's how many are used by Mercurial Adamantite while leveling Jewelcrafting)
  • undercut by 1s
  • price threshold of 6g
  • fallback of 15g

Groups

Now we want to create some groups. Each group can contain as many items as you want, but they'll all be priced the same. When I use this for jewelcrafting, I've created a group for common, rare and epic cut gems, as well a separate group for red cuts because reds sell more. I've got the same pricing on rare reds as all the other rare cuts, but my post cap is higher because people are more likely to buy reds in higher volume.

Once you've named your group, you'll be able to go in and start adding items and customizing the pricing scheme for it. Click on the item in the "Add items" tab to add them, and click on the "Remove items" tab to see a list of items in the group. You cannot put the same item in multiple groups, because that simply wouldn't make sense.

Now when you visit the auction house's auctions tab, you have a new button: "Post". Click it, and you can start posting your auctions much faster than you can with any other addon.

The setup is a little heavier with these addons, but they allow you to set it and forget it. Every day, you can confine the majority of your auction house time to crafting and buying. Selling is done as fast as you can empty your mail, run to the AH, and post your inventory again.

Cancelling can be automated as well by clicking the cancel button. Like auctions, you need to confirm each single cancellation; however, it won't cancel anything that you're not undercut on. Also, it ignores items not in a group in the addon, so if you've manually posted some stuff that you don't sell frequently enough to justify creating a group for, you don't need to worry about it accidentally cancelling them as well.

You probably don't want to overuse this button, as it adds more work than any other feature of this addon. It's unfortunately almost a requirement for very competitive glyph markets; however, I don't touch the thing unless I have a good reason and enough time, and I can expect the additional profits to cover the lost time and deposit costs.

Auto mailer

The last thing I'm going to talk about is the auto mailer. You can assign groups or individual items to be send automatically to specific characters. It's important to read the note that warns you about typos in the character name, because it would really suck to send a whole load of, say, glyphs to someone else.

For example, I have three glyph-posting alts. Two of them handle the glyphs for three classes, and one of them handles four. I have a group created for each class, and I've set each group to be auto-mailed to the alt responsible for posting those glyphs. When I log into my scribinatrixtor, all I have to do is walk up to a mailbox and check "automail". It will handle the rest for me.

Insider Trader takes you behind the scenes of the bustling subculture of professional craftsmen, examining the profitable, the tragically lacking and the methods behind the madness.

Filed under: Economy, Insider Trader (Professions)

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