Scarcity is a concept that is incredibly important in real life marketing. Limited edition, time-limited offers and similar techniques are incredibly powerful. Are there markets where this matters in WoW? Let’s take a look!
Types of scarcity
Before we go looking for specific markets we will take a quick look at some types of scarcity. Scarcity can be caused by the item being rare, by demand, because it is seasonal and can only be acquired at certain times or because it is only useful in a certain period of time.
The idea for this post came because I had to buy material turn ins for the Darkmoon Faire to get my necklace today. This cost me a lot of gold as it was almost impossible to find enough of the required items. I had to do it today as it was my last chance for 3 weeks. So I went out and shopped with little regard for prices. If you can identify similar situations you are sure to profit!
Rarity is extremely obvious. The rarer an item is the harder it will be to find it on the AH. Prime examples of extremely rare items that are thus extremely popular include Teebu’s Blazing Longsword in classic and TCG mounts in BfA. These hyper rare items are extremely sought after for prestige reasons and there are very few in circulation.
Time limited acquisition
This is usually related to items that come from the various seasonal events in WoW. in classic there are some very nice examples, including Winter Squid, only available during the winter month’s and the Elixir of Frost power recipe that can only be obtained during the Christmas Event. Limiting supply makes an item rarer and drives up the price.
Items with a limited window of usefulness
This is the case for the darkmoon turn ins. You need to get them before the faire closes or you won’t get any benefit. This is one of the best situations to look for as a goldmaker. If there are time limits for getting something then players are willing to pay. Ahead of the curve mounts from carries, items needed for quests or turn-ins that are going away are two of the main examples.
To get ahead of this you need to be selling your items when the deadline approaches. Be active and use every available channel to increase your sales.
Putting it to work
Most scarcity in WoW will really just have a direct impact on the average price level of an item. Scarcity is most often just caused by very high rarity of a specific item. There are cases however where an item will only be valuable within smaller windows. Selling the item when the value is high will help you generate significantly more sales and more gold from those sales.