Attention WoWMart shoppers. There’s a special on Lich Bloom in isle 3.
So, I have been keeping track of the herbs needed to craft the flask of endless rage. This flask seems to be a very popular item on raid nights so I’m using it as the basis for my test. An interesting thing happens on Bleeding Hollow for alchemists. The price of materials for a flask is usually equal to the price of the flask itself, +/- 3 gold. So, if you are a dual crafter, like say a Alchemist/Tailor or something like that, you’re pretty much out of luck when it comes to making flasks for enough profit to be meaningful, unless you do your homework. The word "meaningful" in that sentence is very subjective, but let’s assume “meaningful” is at least enough gold to cover weekly maintenance costs.
So, who’s making money off of Alchemy on Bleeding Hollow? Alchemist/Herbalists are. I suppose there just aren’t enough pure farmers on this server to bring the price of herbs down low enough for an Alchemist to buy all his/her materials from the auction house. One side effect of this “self employed” style of gatherer/crafter market is that there are very few, if any, deep under cutters. Producers are limited to selling what they have farmed for. You can’t sell 500 flasks if you didn’t farm 500 Frost Lotus so the cheap flasks get scooped up fast. Furthermore, since the cost of the materials is so close to the cost of the flask, no one is going to undercut the market rate by 40% like the Greedy Goblin does with his glyphs. This also makes flasks a bit more attractive to buy low and relist later.
What happens if you don’t want to gather your own herbs? You have to become a bargain shopper. This is where a tool like Market Watcher could come in very handy. Add the materials for a flask AND the flask you want to make to your Market Watcher addon and scan the auction house twice a day for a few weeks and take a look at the trend. Each herb should start to show a pattern of low and high prices over the WoW week of Tuesday through Monday. Gathered resources are almost always cheaper on Sunday and Monday nights as players unload their stocks after a long weekend of farming. Start buying herbs at their low point and save them for when the flask sells at its high point then craft the flasks and start selling. The high point for flasks is usually Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday night as those are the nights most guilds are scheduled to raid. Remember not to flood the market with them, just post 2 or 3 at a time and repost as they are purchased. It really is an easy thing to do and it seems silly writing about it, but I suspect a lot of people don’t bother with this kind of planning and preparation. You may not get rich by selling flasks for a lower profit than someone with alchemy/herbalism, but you won’t have to spend time farming and ultimately that is the goal for a lot of us.
Of course if you enjoy farming like my wife does, then that’s more coin in your pocket for something that is relaxing and care free. Sometimes though, farming doesn’t produce enough materials to supply your crafting or real life gets in the way of us flying circles around Northrend so stocking up on materials from the auction house when they are dirt cheap is always a good idea, especially when it’s a rare drop material like Frost Lotus.
What's the materials cost vs. market price for consumables on your server?
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