Saturday, 10 September 2011

Entering and becoming Belt Buckle Market Leader

Critical may be grumps but a plea for help is a plea for help.

"A few weeks ago i decided to max out my Blacksmithing for the Belt Buckles, i then noticed as soon as i posted some i was undercut. No matter what time i posted 8am or eithen 1am i was still undercut by the same person. I noticed this person must be using the iphone auction option as he can undercut while not being in game. I then did some reading on how to deal with this type of camper and i read the thread "Critical goblins deep undercut" which is for glyphs but thought id try this out. I made 120 buckles (it cost me 60G per buckle) and the price for one was 200-230G so i went ahead and posted 5 at 120g that was undercut so i then went to 90G and again it was undercut so i went 80G, now i noticed i was not undercut and 10 minutes past so i decided to post 85 buckles at 80G each. 5 minutes later i noticed he purchased all my buckles and then reset the price to 160G per buckle. Now i decided to check out horde to see the market there as i would like to get some gold on the Horde side, it seems only 1 person is somewhat on top of the market there (i dont think it is the same person who is on Alliance side). So what do i do? Do i stock up on 400+ buckles and put a wall up at 99G per buckle? Do i just forget this market on Alliance side and test the waters on Horde?"

A bit of a wall of text but ok let's start with known "facts":
1. Lemmonade can craft belt buckle at a cost of 60g
2. Before he entered the market (he's a he? /shrug) buckles sell between 200-230g
3. His competitor is a RAH camper

The first thing to establish is what is your goal?
Goal 1 - to own the ebon belt buckle market, ie drive out all serious competitors and "control" the market.
Goal 2 - to simply make gold/profit with belt buckles, dont care about owning market.

The primary goal of this method is to gain control of XXX market however yes you can use it even if you are not aiming to "own your market". 

I know people don't like hearing this but its quicker if I saying it up front. You're doing it wrong. Now, for the purpose of this post I am going to assume you want to achieve Goal 1: Domination.

With your particular scenario here's what you should do. Start casual and slow dont go charging in or else he will straight away drop into a defensive stance and guard his achille heels. Set your TSM settings as follows:
- stack size 1
- stack quantity 10
- duration 48hrs
- fallback 140g (ceiling)
- threshold 80g (floor)
- undercut 30g
- reset, Dont Post

This is the game plan.
Step 1: Before you go to bed, Post (this should result in a wall of 10 single belts going up at 140g for 48hrs)
Result: he will undercut yours by 1g

Step 2: Wake up, Post once again neatly, do not cancel (this will result 2 walls, maybe 8x140g and now 10x 109g both walls set for max durations)
Result: he will undercut again by 1g

Step 3: Come home from work, do not cancel again Post once neatly (this will result in 3 walls, 8x140g, 8x109g and 10x 80g all with long durations)
Result: when you reach 80g normally he would buy you out and relist all the way back up above 150g. This time he cant because he has to not only buy out your 80g auctions, but also your 109g and 140g auctions if he wants to list at 150g or 200g. Now he has to list his at 79g. This will not make him happy.

Step 4: At this point you have 2 choices:

1. Maintain status quo - keep your threshold to 80g and force him to sell at 79g for approx 20-30g profit. This is acceptable strategy because he is going to not going to be a happy chap going from being able to sell for above 200g all the way down now to 79g.

2. Squeeze - lower your fallback by 10g, and threshold by 5g. This brings the ceiling and floor down. This will definitely make the other guy more unhappy than (1) but sometimes if you squeeze him too early you make him too mad and he will do anything to piss you off including selling at loss.

I recommend being patient and going with choice 1 for a few days, then do 2. Wait a few days and squeeze again.

Remember the key is to be patient. Think of it this way, it's like trying to go into someone's mansion and convincing them to give up that mansion to you. You have to sneakily make it dirty or run down or haunted to the point they decide to move to a different mansion (profession) without them knowing you are doing it on purpose. But if you are not careful and they know are doing it on purpose, they will bunker down even harder and I can tell you they will sell at a loss for a long time just to "get you back".

If you give my suggestion a try please let me know how it went. Even a short "didnt work" would be appreciated.

Critical wishes you luck.


  1. It's simple. You buy mats for 60g, sell for 80g. Offer to sell as many buckles as he wants to buy, and flood market at 80g.

    I don't care about owning a market, only selling stuff at a profit. If your competiton wants to grant you guaranteed sales @20g profit/item, it still beats farming.

    Once your competiton starts re-posting your buckles at a loss, then I agree with critical - lower both your fallback and threshold.

  2. To be honest the best advice Critical can give Lemmonade is set your goal and plan how to achieve it. Be firm with your goal, be flexible with your plan.

    This wont be a simple fight. The above is only the first battle of the war.

  3. I agree with Foo. If you are able to craft for 60g, then you can still make a lot fo gold selling at 79 or 80 gold per buckle.

    Stop trying to selling at the Old Values, when the cost to craft has come crashing down.

  4. No offense guys, but telling him to sell at 80g (or 75 or 61g) because it's profitable is basic advice that Lemmonade already knows. We all know.

    IMO it's actually bad advice. This because if its profitable at 61g for Lemmonade it will definitely be profitable for his competitor which probably can craft for lower because this is his market. So all that will happen is both of them crashing price to just above craft price until one guy finally gives up. In this scenario my money's on the competitor. RAH doesnt just mean he remotely relists. To a Market Leader, RAH means that guy has a gajillion stock in his pocket because you cant craft in RAH only list. He's in it for the long haul.

    He needs a better business plan than "if its profitable sell, stop if its not".

    Remember there can only be one Market Leader. At the moment the other guy is the ML. Lemmonade doesnt deserve market share if he's not strong enough to compete. I believe he can, but only if he draws out his battle plans well because belt buckles is a simple market unlike gems/glyphs/enchants which have much more variables involved. The simplest markets are the hardest to dominate in because anyone and everyone can do them.

  5. Market leader is largely overrated.

    It simply comes down to will you work for less than they will. If you do - then you become market leader of a potentially worthless market.

    If they are stubborn (and not many are), then it's a race to the bottom. If they are not stubborn, then any reasonable strategy will see them off.

  6. If you're working for 20g profit after purchasing, smelting and crafting, is it really worth it? Sure, if you're not the one doing it, someone else will, but 20g (multiplied by however many) can be earned with three clicks on the AH just buying and reselling.

    Selling cheap to your competition is worth more to them than the difference in prices; you're effectively reducing their workload so they can focus on other avenues of income. All that ore they no longer have to process can be tied up in other projects or crafts.

    I'd say settle in for a long drawn out undercut fight, or find another market. For 20g, it just isn't worth maintaining.

  7. @Mike

    1 sale @ 20g profit isn't worth much. I wouldn't login for that.

    However, 100 sales @ 20g profit is definitely worth the time. I like that kind of market.

  8. few news about wow now


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