Transmutes have been a staple of laid-back goldmaking for a while, and TBC is no exception, with several new cooldown-based transmutes.
In addition to transmutes TBC offers profession specializations. One of them for alchemy is transmutation mastery, which gives a chance to get additional materials whenever you do a transmute. This will usually average out to about 20% extra, which is quite substantial. Alchemy specializations are locked to level 68 or above however, so the barrier to entry for getting a large complement of transmutation alts is quite high. I would suggest pricing transmuted item without considering the extras and just enjoying the windfall profit from extra procs.
There are multiple transmutes coming in TBC, with most of them being reputation locked. Primal Might is the most well-known transmute, which is learned from a recipe that anyone can buy from Skreah in Shattrath. In addition to this there’s a whole bunch of transmutes that will turn primals into other forms of primals. These are obtained from various reputations at revered. The high barrier to entry at revered means that they are generally not relevant. The only one that is even particularly good is Primal Earth to Water from Sporeggar Revered. Lastly there are transmute cooldowns for crafting the new meta gems. This is the only way to craft these meta-gems and these will be in demand.
Meta-gems are king
On my realm at least the meta gem transmutes are significantly more profitable than anything else. You get them from Honor Hold Honred for the Skyfire Diamond and Cenarion Expedition Honored for the Earthstorm Diamond. Both are in demand, but skyfire diamonds are more expensive requiring Primal fire. They are also a little more in-demand, but not by a ridiculous margin. I would suggest getting both and just picking whichever looks most profitable.
Selling in trade versus crafting
The trade chat market for primal mights seems much worse than the market for Arcanite was. Overall it does not seem like it’s particularly worth it to sell transmutes in chat. Primal Might has a going rate of 20 g on my realm, but there are few buyers. If I do the earthstorm Diamond I make 100g per diamond, so I’ll just be buying materials and doing it on cooldown for my own risk.
Combining with jewelcrafting
If you do a lot of prospecting then you will naturally have very easy access to the gems for an Earthstorm diamond. The recipe uses 3 of each uncommon gems that are yellow, purple and green. Green and purple are the two worst colors, so getting a way of using them without having to sell them to someone is actually a great deal. If you are a jewelcrafter I would suggest doing Earthstorm only for that reason. If you can combine it with recipes like the relentless earthstorm diamond from Exalted consortium you’ll be in a great position.
Getting the earthstorm recipe
The earthstorm diamond recipe has one last advantage, and that is the fact that you can get the rep on a level 60 crafter for a very low cost. You need exactly 360 Unidentified plant parts (or less if human). Then you run to Cenarion Expedition in Zangarmarsh and pick up the quest for plant parts. Turn it in 36 times and you will hit honored perfectly, allowing you to buy the recipe. Honored with Honor hold is quite a bit more work as there is no way to brute force it with tradeable items.
Sell with auctionator for now
Markets in TBC are still so volatile I would suggest selling your items with auctionator. Until prices stabilize a little more this will remain the safest approach. Whether you sell primal might or either of the meta gems the approach is the same. Good luck and happy hunting!