Thursday, 20 October 2011

Glyphs - Popularity and Stealth for increased profits

Like Stokpile used to say "I have a personal fleet of dedicated campers".

They know my posting and crafting alts. All my important alts are on their "friend" lists so they can watch me constantly and try to undercut everything I post as soon as I post it. I still sell a lot but sometimes it can be difficult making much profit especially in the glyph market where there are several persistent campers and a long established cartel all trying to dominate the market.

Low enough priced glyph walls will chase pretty much everyone off except the cartel's 3 main guys and 2 or 3 of the independent campers. The independents will usually stop when prices get near cost. The cartel will keep on undercutting by 1c with their own walls no matter how low the price goes until they decide to try another buyout and price reset. Multiple walls at progressively higher prices stops buyouts but maintaining multiple walls takes a lot of time and though it is profitable it isn't really profitable enough to justify the time it takes. And if I'm busy posting glyphs I'm not posting other more profitable items.

I wanted a new glyph strategy that would be more profitable, take less time and fly unnoticed under the competition's radar.

I've been using my new glyph strategy for several weeks now. I'm selling more glyphs than ever at much higher profit margins while spending far less time at it. The majority of my glyphs are now selling for 119-200g rather than the 15-20g I usually got with a wall strategy.

Popularity and stealth are what it's all about. Here's how it works:

Stealth Posting - Hiding the fact it's me posting

The campers had all my posting alts figured out and it isn't hard to identify a new alt on the same account by  observing login / logout patterns, so the first thing I did was open up a second account and create a new glyph posting alt.

I'm careful to mix up login / logout times so they don't notice any patterns and realize it's me. I make sure both glyph posters are sometimes but not always online at the same time. Sometimes they'll log in within minutes of each other, other times I make sure they log in at least a half hour to an hour apart. Sometimes I don't log them in within 6 hours of each other or I'll not log one of them in at all on a particular day.

The new alt only posts 2 of each glyph with a standard small undercut just like the campers so they don't notice me. I undercut my known alts with this toon (and the known alts undercut this one) so it looks like it isn't associated with me in any way.

The campers, not realizing it's me, often let my posts on the new alt stand for hours at a time without undercutting the way they would if they had even the slightest idea it might be me. Especially when I have my known glyph poster logged in too and have a little price "war" with myself.

The known alt only posts 3 of each glyph now with a 120g fallback and usually only once per day. Oddly enough he's selling a lot of glyphs now too which doesn't match prior experience at all. In the past whenever I posted higher priced glyphs the campers went into an undercutting frenzy and I'd sell very few if any.

Glyph Popularity - Focusing mainly on the most popular glyphs, the ones that sell best.

Some glyphs are better than others, there's significantly more demand for the best glyphs. I took the 159 best / most popular glyphs (14 - 17  per class) and keep full stacks of them in stock on the new alt. 159 is the number of glyphs you can fit into 4 x 36 slot glyph bags plus your backpack with 1 slot taken by your hearthstone. I used to help me decide which glyphs to focus on. I took the 9 most popular glyphs for each class (3 each Prime, Major and Minor) then added several more for each class based on which ones were top choices for particular specs. Finally I added a few more I knew from past experience sold well in spite of not being very good.

To keep crafting and mailing simple I make 20 each of the 159 most popular glyphs and only 8 each of the others. I send all glyphs to one character before crafting so when I'm done crafting I know which glyphs go where just by how big the stacks are. Any stack over 10 goes to my popular glyph poster and the rest go to my known glyph poster.

Posting less than half the glyphs on the popular poster helps it fly under the radar too. The competition assumes it's a new player in the market who "doesn't even have half the glyphs yet" and don't pay much attention to it. Eventually they'll notice it's only posting all the best / most popular glyphs but so far they seem oblivious to that minor detail.

The new alt posts several times a day but since I'm only posting 159 glyphs in total and only 2 at time it only takes me a minute or two to post them all. When someone undercuts me I can cancel and repost all the best glyphs in far less time than they can do a full cancel / repost of all glyphs even if they're only posting 1 of each glyph. In fact with 20 of each of the 159 glyphs in my bags I can post 2 of each every 5 minutes for 1 hour 40 minutes before I have to cancel or run to the mailbox / bank and restock.


This strategy has worked great for me so far.  I had high expectations for the strategy in the first place and so far it's been exceeding all expectations.

Now that I've blogged about my new strategy the competition (several of whom read my blog) should be able to figure out who my new posting alt is pretty quick. My glyph profits will likely go down as a result but that's ok. If they go after the new alt too aggressively I'll just start posting walls again. Besides gem profits are way up since the bot transferred anyhow.

If you don't have your own "personal fleet of dedicated campers" like I do you probably don't need to worry about stealth. Just focusing on the most popular glyphs might be enough.


  1. Great post. I need a new strategy and this sounds like it. Thanks.

  2. good post, I like it.

    I'm always impressed with you and previously Stokpile, as I could never maintain an efficient enough routine to make it worth the effort, extra account cost.