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Gold Capped: Breaking the glyph wall

Every week, Gold Capped brings you tips on how to make money on the auction house. This article from inscription specialist Steve Zamboni has been brought to you by Seed, the Aol guest writer program that brings your words to WoW.com.

Almost all auction house tactics revolve around the undercut. It may be a single copper, a few silver or a few gold, or a freefall drop down to the price of materials. Regardless of the amount or the frequency, most undercuts share a common misconception: that you're controlling the market with your undercuts. You're not. Your competitor has the control. By undercutting, you've just let your competitor decide your price. You've let your competitor set a cap on your profits -- and more, you've agreed to accept even less with your undercut.

The inscription market sees more than its fair share of this, sometimes on a large scale. The low deposits encourage large number of postings, followed by even larger numbers of cancellations and repostings. Prices fall as each new poster accepts and trumps the previous poster's prices, until the market falls to the cost of materials and the walls go up. The final wall signals a complete loss of market control.

Once it's up, it no longer matters who built the wall. If it's your wall, you can't raise prices until the competition perched above you goes away. If it's not your wall, you can't raise prices on your auctions until someone breaks the wall. Stalemate, and out come the piña coladas.

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Filed under: Guest Posts, Gold Capped

Gold Capped: When glyph prices hit the wall

Every week, Gold Capped brings you tips on how to make money on the auction house. This article from inscription specialist Steve Zamboni has been brought to you by Seed, the Aol guest writer program that brings your words to WoW.com.

Imagine a typical glyph market on a busy realm: dozens of goblins sitting hunched over their steam calculators surrounding the trading pit, each figuring their costs and profits down to the last copper trying to gain an advantage over the others. Thousands of glyphs are posted every hour, most to be canceled and reposted an hour later at even lower prices. Eventually, one of the goblins has a flash of brilliance (or cracks under the strain; the records aren't clear) and posts all of his glyphs at a loss. The calculation engines grind to a stop, leaving the goblins to stare up at the big board in silence, then at each other. "Now what?"

We call it the wall. One scribe picks a price and tries to hold the entire market to that price. If it holds, the market stops at the wall, and everyone on the other side watches helplessly as sales drop to zero. Sometimes it's done to drive off competitors; sometimes it's done to dissuade new competitors from entering the market, or just to burn up excess ink supplies ... or even just out of boredom to cause pointless drama, goblin style.

Like all good goblin inventions, the wall appears simple on the outside, but remains complicated (and somewhat explosive) when put into practice. One complication is that there is more actually more than one type of wall.

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Filed under: Economy, Guest Posts, Gold Capped

Gold Capped: How to calculate inscription costs and prices

Every week, Gold Capped brings you tips on how to make money on the auction house. This article from inscription specialist Steve Zamboni has been brought to you by Seed, the Aol guest writer program that brings your words to WoW.com.

With its myriad of materials and finished items, inscription can be one of the more complicated professions for a crafter who's trying to track his expenses and profits (or even to know if he's made a profit at all). Herb prices have changed dramatically over the past several months, dropping to record lows as farming bots proliferate and climbing just as dramatically during the ban wave that followed. After months of being spoiled by a market overflowing with cheap herbs, many players stopped paying attention to what they were paying to make each item. Now that herb prices are climbing, it's left a number of sellers scrambling to reprice their items and to take a closer look at what they're paying for their supplies.

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Filed under: Guest Posts, Gold Capped

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