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  1. #1
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus jha4ceb's Avatar
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    Making Money from the Trading Post: Flipping 101

    Last night we had a brief discussion in Mumble about making money in GW2. During the last week I've started to experiment with playing the trading post, and the results have been startling. Admittedly I have put a lot of time into it -- but I've made almost 100 gold without too much difficulty. I think this is an easy way to make money if you know where to start. The barrier to entry is low, and the risks are minimal. I thought I'd share some basic beginner's tips, and we could have a discussion about the most efficient way to go about it.

    The easiest way to make money from the TP is by "flipping"; that is, buying low and selling high. You place buy orders for a good, then when they are fulfilled, list the goods for sale at a higher price. Now the TP takes 15% when you sell a good, so this only works for goods where there is a significant gap between the buy price and the sell price. But where these gaps exist you can often you can make profits of 15%-40% on your investments very quickly. The idea is that you're making money from the laziness of buyers and sellers -- lazy sellers would rather have their money now than get more for their goods, and lazy buyers are happy to pay more to have their goods instantly.



    Here are some beginner's tips OTOMH, anyway:


    1. Peruse websites like http://www.guildwarstrade.com/ and http://www.gw2tp.net/ to figure out which goods you can make a profit from flipping. The latter site is my favourite.


    2. Find some reliable markets. The ideal ones are for goods which are in large supply, so buy orders get fulfilled quickly. Here are some good ones to look at where profit can often be made:
    > Raw cooking materials: e.g. spinach, oregano, parsnip, potato.
    > Raw gemstones: e.g. Carnelian, Topaz, Peridot, Amethyst.
    > Intermediate crafting materials: Settings, filigrees, chains; sword blades, etc.
    > Low-level (sub-40) jewellery.
    > Low-level (sub-40) weapons.
    > Potions.

    Some markets which are profitable but more competitive:
    > Superior/major sigils.
    > Dyes.

    Money can be made in these markets but you'll find yourself getting outbid more often. Dyes especially have incredible margins (usually upwards of 50%) but are very competitive.

    In some cases you'll only be making a few copper per transaction. But if you buy 40 silver worth of gemstones, and sell them for (e.g.) 55 silver regularly, you'll be amazed at how quickly the money adds up.


    3. Start small. Buy a bunch of cheap mats (e.g. raw cooking mats) or a few sigils and flip them. Once you are confident with how to make money, begin to buy more widely. At this point, don't keep all your eggs in one basket.


    4. Relatedly, be liberal in your buy orders. These are without risk, since if you cancel them you get all your money back. (This is not the case with sales, since if you cancel a sell order to reduce the price then you'll have to pay the 5% listing fee again. But in most cases this won't eliminate *all* your profits.)


    5. In faster moving markets (gemstones, trohpies) it's realistic to flip hundreds of items at a time. For slower markets like dyes and sigils, you'll realistically be limited to 5-20 at a time.


    6. Best practice for getting your buy/sell orders fulfilled quickly: order at 1 copper above the current bid, and sell at 1 copper below the current bid. In the low end markets, however, you'll have to be careful to make sure this doesn't eliminate all your profit.


    7. Don't fret if you get outbid or someone undercuts you on price. Lots of markets move quickly enough that your orders will get fulfilled/goods will get sold relatively quickly anyway. Wait some time before cancelling buy orders or relisting goods at a lower price.


    Any idea what should be added to this list?
    Last edited by jha4ceb; 10-06-2013 at 04:33 PM.
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  2. #2
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Squiz's Avatar
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    Awesome stuff, thanks Saph! One thing to keep in mind is that TP fees are lower when you sell larger amount of items at the same time (i.e. 250 vs. 10x25 items). This is probably due to the rounding of fees, which make small differences (like maybe 1 copper for some lower tier crafting materials), but add up to larger sums.

    So consider selling materials in larger quantities, it'll save you some money in the long run!

  3. #3
    Lesser Hivemind Node Krathor's Avatar
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    While I don't actively look for items to 'flip' on the TP, I do make most of my money through having a good WvWvW or dungeon session and then, in the midst of it, hitting 'deposit all collectables' within the inventory options menu. Over time, I accumulate a decent amount of trade goods that are then sold in bulk on the TP. This includes things like Mystic Coins, that I never ever use.

    Talking of selling things I never use... I've started to sell all of the unidentified dyes that I gather. Again, I don't sell them one at a time but rather in bulk. Just make sure you pick your colours well when creating your character.

    Finally, I do buy gems but usually only sell them when there's a sale on the Gem Store. For some reason, people love to buy gems using gold from the currency converter whenever ANet hold a Gem Store sale - like what happened this weekend. This means that the price of gems skyrocket on the market and so, if you're selling gems, you can make a lot of money.
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  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by squirrelfanatic View Post
    Awesome stuff, thanks Saph! One thing to keep in mind is that TP fees are lower when you sell larger amount of items at the same time (i.e. 250 vs. 10x25 items). This is probably due to the rounding of fees, which make small differences (like maybe 1 copper for some lower tier crafting materials), but add up to larger sums.

    So consider selling materials in larger quantities, it'll save you some money in the long run!
    Hehe, I see you still remember the lectures!
    John Thorns, Rakel, Elizia Crow, Shiro Kanjo, Edda Swan, Eril Stenr - kinjru.2439

  5. #5
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Squiz's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by John View Post
    Hehe, I see you still remember the lectures!
    :P What's good for me can't be bad for others. Thought I'd share.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by squirrelfanatic View Post
    :P What's good for me can't be bad for others. Thought I'd share.
    I agree, this thread is great! : )
    John Thorns, Rakel, Elizia Crow, Shiro Kanjo, Edda Swan, Eril Stenr - kinjru.2439

  7. #7
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    The other thing to keep an eye on is what the popular crafting guides are listing as the mats for their pathways to 400. People will spend silly money on these just to get the levels.

  8. #8
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus jha4ceb's Avatar
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    Yep, that's a great tip. Check here for example: http://gw2crafts.saladon.net/

    That's a dynamic guide, but some materials reliably stay on the lists - and some are common to multiple professions.
    GW2: Saphnabylni & co.

  9. #9
    Activated Node Lippsy's Avatar
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    Is it bad that I read the title of this thread as Making a monkey out of trade post flipping?

  10. #10
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    Good tips, Saph! I'll share some personal examples, though, because I think I need some advanced tips.

    i've managed to gather about 300 gold all told since the beginning of the game. I'm kitted out in full exotics/ascended, but don't have any legendaries or sexy Vision of the Mists/Whisperblade/Firebringer quasi-legendary exotics.

    I started very small, flipping Totems and Venom mats. The profit was lousy, but i got my feet wet, and eventually switched up to superior runes, which were quite profitable at the beginning. Now, however, I find the margins are so small that it's not really worth it, and I'm out of that market. I've played with the exotics market a bit, and while it's generally profitable, I'm not seeing the massive profits that people playing the TP seem to make.

    Considering I have a fairly sizeable chunk of money to invest, I'm clearly doing something wrong. |So I'll muse out loud a bit, and maybe you TP sharks can give me some feedback and/or point me in the right direction. =)

    - I've generally focused on flipping low-cost items - I rarely try to flip anything costing more than 3-4g, since the higher the buy price, the higher the listing fees and possibility of getting burned if it doesn't sell. Am i being too conservative/cowardly?

    - I've never tried to trade crafting mats, like copper or ori. Do the tiny margins really add up that much?

    - I've tried investing in rares, where the margins are tasty, but those markets aren't very fluid, and orders take a long time to get filled (if at all).

    - I finally decided to get my crafting skills to 400 yesterday, and in the process spotted some nice spreads on the required materials. I think I might check that out more.

    - Is it possible to make money through crafting? The answer so far seems to be 'it depends', but I hear certain recipes can be profitable over short periods of time if you buy the ingredients and sell the finished product. If anyone has gone this route, how much of a time window does such profitability have? Is it a matter of minutes or hours before a recipe loses its profitability, or are we talking about days?

    - I briefly tried MF minor sigils/runes, but that was super time intensive and not particularly profitable. I didn't do it in on any large scale, however, so maybe just bad RNG?



    Guess I'll stop musing there. Would really appreciate some tips, though, because I feel like I've lost steam and I'm not sure how to get it back.

    Cheers!
    GW2: Devotion, lv. 80 Engineer

  11. #11
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus jha4ceb's Avatar
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    Hi Rokahef, some thoughts:

    - I too have shied away from high-cost items so far. I don't think it's cowardly exactly, but rather about minimizing risk. It makes sense to know a market well before you invest a large amount into it.

    - The trouble with margins on the most popular crafting mats (copper, ori, etc) is that they rarely stay around for long. This is true of the ores and logs, at least -- sometimes there are gaps on planks and ingots that can be exploited. Bronze and Steel ingots seem particularly good for this.

    - Low cost items reliably turn a profit, but the profit per unit is usually quite low. Higher cost items (e.g. rares, sigils) turn bigger profits per unit, but as you say, the markets are slower and more difficult to break into. I think I'm done with dyes for now, for instance -- I rarely get any orders fulfilled without having to up my order a few times, which is annoying an inefficient. Most of my income comes from bulk buying sub-1 silver goods and selling for 20-30% profit: trophies, jewellery, gemstones and cooking mats/food are the main fodder for this.

    - I think it is possible to make money through crafting, but there aren't many options. Check gw2spidy.com, which allows you to sort recipes by their capacity to make a profit. I think most crafting professions have at least some profitable recipes.
    GW2: Saphnabylni & co.

  12. #12
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    Hmm. For jewel crafting and cooking, the answer is generally "no" UNLESS you happen to have gathered the mats for free
    Although you'll generally make more money by selling the raw components.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by jha4ceb View Post
    Hi Rokahef, some thoughts:

    - Low cost items reliably turn a profit, but the profit per unit is usually quite low. Higher cost items (e.g. rares, sigils) turn bigger profits per unit, but as you say, the markets are slower and more difficult to break into. I think I'm done with dyes for now, for instance -- I rarely get any orders fulfilled without having to up my order a few times, which is annoying an inefficient. Most of my income comes from bulk buying sub-1 silver goods and selling for 20-30% profit: trophies, jewellery, gemstones and cooking mats/food are the main fodder for this.
    Yeah, I think I need to try this more. Do you post in full stacks, or 20/50/100 at a time?
    GW2: Devotion, lv. 80 Engineer

  14. #14
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Squiz's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rokahef View Post
    Yeah, I think I need to try this more. Do you post in full stacks, or 20/50/100 at a time?
    As said above, always try to sell in larger quantities to minimize the rounding error for TP fees. There may possibly be some situations where you should think carefully about the amount of items you put on the market in one go, like for example fragile markets that you'd rather not flood with large quantities of items. I bet there are quite a few people who look at stock volumes (and how quickly they in- or decrease), so in these cases I would try not to wake sleeping dogs. But even then I would try to put up my sell offers in bundles of up to250 items/a full stack.

  15. #15
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus jha4ceb's Avatar
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    It depends on the item. Some markets move faster than others -- for fine crafting mats, you can receive a full stack in a few minutes. But for intermediate crafting mats like settings, markets are much slower, and it might not make much sense to order a full stack. Personally, I rarely order more than 25s-50s worth of an item at a time -- so the number I order depends on the item.

    The exception is for items that I've reliably bought and sold regularly -- for these I'll often go up to 1 gold in a single purchase.
    Last edited by jha4ceb; 27-02-2013 at 02:05 PM.
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  16. #16
    Network Hub Hunchback's Avatar
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    Nice tips guys, thanks for the info.

    So to sum it up:

    * Target items that sell for ~1 silver per piece
    * Buy and sell with 1-2 copper difference in buy/sell prices
    * Sell in as larger bulks as possible

    ?
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  17. #17
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Squiz's Avatar
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    It's not quite that easy. You'll have to consider the trading post fees (10% of the listed items' worth for putting the sell order up, another 5% when they actually sell) and then calculate the price point where you break even.

    This tool here is quite handy for helping you with that.

    There are some items which allow a very narrow margin if you raise the sell price just a few copper above buy price, but you'd need to sell quite a few of those to make some real money.

  18. #18
    Network Hub Hunchback's Avatar
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    Oh, nice tool! Thanks
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  19. #19
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus jha4ceb's Avatar
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    Was talking to some guild folks just now and promised to share some more flipping secrets on the forums.

    Here are some goods which it has been consistently profitable to flip almost every day for the last couple of months (with current profit levels).

    Name -- Buy price -- Sell price -- % profit (after fees)

    Gems/Rare Mats
    Brilliant Ruby Jewel -- 1s36c -- 2s61c -- 63%
    Charged Sliver -- 11s12c -- 16s51c -- 26%
    Artisan Maintenance Oil -- 79c - 1s16c -- 25%
    Molten Fragment -- 13s83c -- 19s82c -- 22%
    Quality Sharpening Stone -- 67c -- 94c -- 19%
    Malachite Pebble -- 25c -- 37c -- 26%

    Food/Fine Mats
    Glazed pear tart -- 45c -- 98c -- 85%
    Sage Stuffing -- 1s19c -- 2s47c -- 76%
    Orange coconut frosting -- 1s18c -- 2s31c --- 66%
    Ascalonian herbs -- 1s50c -- 2s 29c -- 30%
    Chocolate Frosting -- 40c -- 61c -- 30%

    Intermediate crafting mats
    Mithril filigree -- 67c -- 1s10c -- 40%
    Gold hook -- 85c -- 1s35c -- 35%

    Jewellery
    Malachite Copper Stud (masterwork) -- 80c -- 1s80c -- 91%
    Lapis silver earring (fine) -- 45c -- 93c -- 76%
    Turqouise copper ring (masterwork) -- 94c -- 1s83c -- 65%
    Carnelian silver stud (masterwork) -- 1s0c -- 1s80c -- 53%


    Weapons
    Mighty staff lv 6 -- 18c - 1s1c -- 377%
    Mighty bronze pistol -- lv 10 - 70c -- 2s12c -- 157%
    Mighty pistol -- 16c -- 46 c -- 144%


    There are lots of others in each of these categories. These are just examples. High level green jewellery (esp. Ruby and Emerald) are also good flips.

    I use gw2tp.net to get this information. I pay 2 per month for the premium service, which is well worth it -- you can save your searches and create lists of goods for regular reference.
    Last edited by jha4ceb; 04-05-2013 at 08:39 PM.
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  20. #20
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus hawksbane's Avatar
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    On a not entirely unrelated note, does anyone know why minor runes of the fighter are so expensive?

    I picked a couple out of the mystic forge yesterday and sold them 7.5 silver each, considering minor runes rarely go for much more than 50 copper I thought that was a great deal; only now I've discovered you can sell them for 12 silver.
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