Are you confused by all the rapid changes in the markets right now? Maybe even afraid to dive into anything as you are afraid the market will crater?
You don’t have to be.
A simple framework for analyzing markets
Understanding WoW markets is actually not too hard. There are two sides to every market in the game, the supply side consisting of players selling the item and the demand side of the players that are buyers.
Understand how and why those two sides work and you can start making predictions.
The Supply Side
The supply side is primarily driven by players that are focused on the gold making side of the game. Mass crafters will provide a large amount of the volume. How materials are obtained will vary a lot between markets and will have large impacts.
How are materials obtained?
Does the market require a lot of effort?
Can it be mass produced?
These are some questions you can ask. Identifying bottle necks or items that are so abundant that they will quickly lose value are the most important features.
The Demand Side
Why do players buy this item?
That’s pretty much it. Figure out why players buy it. Then you will figure out when they buy it. They’ll be buying when they need it. The largest value will be when the ratio of players that need the item to the players that supply it is the highest.
When this is will vary a lot between items.
Let’s make some predictions:
So let’s analyze som items and make some predictions.
Inscription: Contracts will collapse completely
Inscription is currently completely dominated by players crafting the darkmoon trinkets. These only require viridescent pigments. This means that anyone who crafts trinkets will quickly end up with a MASSIVE stockpile of ultramarine and crimson pigment that are essentially “free”.
Needless to say the market will be flooded by anything that requires these pigments.
I hope they hotfix tranquil mind tomes so the new quiet mind tomes are actually necessary. This would at least help us get rid of some of the pigments that are generated.
Alchemy: Herb prices will SKYROCKET when Uldir opens
This is what happened to Foxflower in Legion:
And I fully expect it to happen again. The main reason players buy consumables is for raiding. Progression raiding will typically go through a lot of consumables.
Flasks for the entire raid and 1-2 potions per pull will be expected for serious raiders.
Currently herbs are only really used by scribes to craft darkmoon decks as no one cares about potions and flasks yet.
This will change in a big way
A 20 man raid using a full set of consumables will use a total of roughly 8000 herbs per raid night (3 flasks and 30 potions per player).
Currently my realm has 900 Sea Stalks.
That’s enough for potions for 3 players for a regular 3 hour raid night (assumes 30 potions over 20’ish pulls).
Needless to say we will need a lot of herbs. I expect supply to rise as more players get rank 3 herbs and start farming, but it will not be enough.
The price will increase by a lot when the AH is literally cleaned out.
At this point I think a significant amount of players will have to raid without potions.
You can take advantage of this right now. Players are crafting tons of Battle Potions to level alchemy and selling them way below crafting cost. I am personally buying a lot of them. I mean, it’s cheaper than the material cost.
I focused on the herb market here as it is the one I am following the closest.
Some other trends I have seen is that platinum ore is relatively cheap. Monelite is needed to level professions and Storm Silver is very useful for the blacksmithing gear. This makes Platinum the ideal ore to prospect at the moment.
The Darkmoon trinket market will likely remain profitable, even if the raw gold profits of this first week will not be sustained. It requires a lot of effort to get expulsom for the cards and process all the herbs. If that isn’t worth it then no one would ever bother crafting them.
Enchanting and cooking are two other markets that will be booming in a week or two, getting your recipes unlocked now is a great idea! Don’t be afraid to buy up materials either. Especially Midnight salmon for feasts. Crystals will likely trend down in price as more players hit level 120 and start generating them though.
For the long term just realize that everything that is useful will retain value. Darkmoon trinkets, flasks, potions, gems, enchants etc. will always be in demand as they always provide performance boosts.
As long as you are providing value to other players, you will be doing well.