Big Ticket, or Long Tail

Spectral Tiger, Darkmoon Faire Decks, Trading Card Game Mounts

Wildvine, Cured Rugged Hide, Raw Rockscale Cod, Scarlet Belt.

A selection of examples of two very different types of items to sell on the AH.


Big Ticket Items for AH

Big Ticket items cost a fortune to buy, or you need a lot of luck.

[quote]The harder I work, the luckier I get. 

Samuel Goldwyn [/quote]

If gold were no object, then everyone would want the best, most expensive gear upgrades and vanity mounts and battle pets.

  • Reins of the Swift Spectral Tiger
  • Pattern: Rich Purple Silk Shirt
  • Lvl 25 Rare Battle Pets
  • Blazing Hippogryph
  • Savage Raptor
  • Wooly White Rhino
  • Amani Dragonhawk
  • Jeweled Onyx Panther
  • Tabard of the Lightbringer
  • Darkmoon Rabbit
  • Relic of Yu’lon
  • High Society Top Hat
  • Royal Satchel

Harrods. Image from The Telegraph



Long Tail Items for AH

Long Tail items are plentiful.  Their value is not immediately apparent.  They are not universally sought after.  You may have to post them several times in order to find the right buyer.  Or you may have to post them at a low price.

Where the long tail works extremely well is in the Mogging Market.  To be as brief and succinct as possible, you buy green items cheap, and resell them at a bigger price because their true value is greater than their generally perceived value, due to their visuals.

I wrote about Long Tail in 2011.

“What’s really amazing about the Long Tail is the sheer size of it. Combine enough [rarer items] on the Long Tail and you’ve got a market bigger than the hits. ” Chris Anderson

  • Glyphs
  • Mageweave
  • Essence of Undeath
  • Journeyman’s Robe
  • Hibernal Pants
  • Highland Spirits
  • Briarthorn
  • Purple Lotus
  • Cured Thick Hide
  • Dark Silk Shirt
  • Potion of Illusion

Walmart. Image from Business



Expensive or Cheap?

It’s not as simple as Expensive or Cheap.

Some cheap items are cheap because the seller does not realise their true value.

Some expensive items will be superceded by new expensive items in the next patch and become comparatively worthless.

Many times, when you are selling an expensive item, you are really only selling Boasting Privs, or More DPS, or I got it First.  When you are selling Long Tail items, you are selling Rental of Your Storage Space,  Understanding How Important This Item Is, and If I Keep Re-Posting This I Will Go Insane


What if if it doesn’t sell?

Expensive Items

  • You have to post it again.
  • More of your gold is tied up in stock.


Cheap Items

  • Chances are, some will sell.
  • With experience, you can roughly estimate what percentage will sell, even though you don’t know which exact items will sell.
  • You can reinvest this gold.


The Big Ticket Seller thinks “what can I get cheaply, sell fast, and make a huge profit?”

The Long Tail Seller thinks “what can I get really cheap, that people will need, and no one else will be selling?”


Should you be a Big Ticket Seller? Or a Long Tail Seller?


I believe you should cover Harrods market, and put as much time into the Walmart market as you can spare.

Automate your Long Tail, and give personal attention to your Big Tickets.

Business Supply Chain. Image WTG News



Should you sell off your cheap stock?

YES if:

  • you don’t have time to do them all
  • they’re starting to annoy you
  • you’re experiencing Burn Out


NO if:

  • you dont want to lose any gold
  • you can’t bear to see your competitor buying it, then reselling for a profit


twitpiAbout the Author

The Gold Queen is written by Alyzande. With many level 100s, 9 years expertise in making gold, 10 garrisons, 16k achievements, 1505 days played, and over 18m gold earned. The Gold Queen blog teaches you how to make gold playing World of Warcraft using ethical trading, auction house flipping, crafting, reselling snatch lists, and farming gold making.

3 replies
  1. Kabang
    Kabang says:

    Perfect timing on this post, I really needed it right now! Have been ignoring the AH pretty much entirely since MoP came out – too wrapped up with playing the game, leveling characters, making stuff for myself, and also suffering from a little bit of burn out too – but my saved-up funds are starting to dwindle, especially with today’s purchase of the remaining mats for Depleted-Kyparium Rocket.

    So I need to get back to it, I WANT to get back into it, the only problem is where to even start? I have heaps and loads of mats, moggle gear, useless gear and just random junk taking up space in the gbanks (yes plural!) I share with my friend and my many many alts’ mailboxes. Last I tried moggle gear just wasn’t selling on my server, not enough to make it profitable compared to time spent reposting and organizing. So selling it off seems like the sensible thing, but since a lot of the stuff isn’t even going on the AH (atleast not fast enough or for enough money to be worth the time of listing it) that means vendoring a lot of potentially useful things, which just goes against everything I believe in as a goblin hoarder.

    Once I’ve dug myself out of the pile of STUFF I’m buried under, I’m going to aim for, as you suggest, Harrods with a bit of Walmart. My problem arose from trying to be both but especially from trying to be Walmart, it’s just too much stuff to handle without burning out unless you wheedle it down somehow.

  2. Magnognomus
    Magnognomus says:

    I do both. My experince however do walmart produce more g.

    Example, we all remember the caravan in silitus? 2 ends, some cookin recipe etc. I got one of them after they have been removed. I know that recipe is no longer in the game, bought for as i remember around 100g. I know the original price was like 10s or something like that, but, I keep it the ah for 100k.. Why? I saw that epic recipe time to time pop up for that price or more. One dAy someone who collects recipes will lookup for that one and will understand… But here is the thing…. I have to be honest with you, I don’t care…. Have 1.2 mill, realy doesn’t matter if i ever sell it. I learned it earlier so don’t need it but still.. I do ghost iron shuffle, blue necklace, iron paw token shuffle, flip 77-80, every glyphs, xmog, so I roughly make 10-15k a day.

    I would say buy this type of items for sale only if you don’t care about to get the money right away. Buy it for fun, you might win or loose. You never know if blizz will put it back in 2 weeks or not. Like the ulduar raid, that head chopper, it’s rare, cool thing, but if you lucky you can buy it from the black market ah… I read someone got it for 600k. Well he sell it in ah?? Don’t know. Would you? 🙂 well if I’d have about 3 mill proly would try it. So as you can see it’s matter of how much you have, how much you care and some luck :).

    Proly the reason of my aproach is simple: never won lottery, don’t belive in, so I don’t thin I will hit a jackpot anytime soon. If that recipe sells for 100k will let you know….. 🙂

  3. jimmyolsenblues
    jimmyolsenblues says:

    I am walmart, I am on a small server with that does not raid progress or hard pvp..Azshara is a true causual server. Walmart does very well because no one is willing to prospect, mill and work the cross faction as hard as me.

    Walmart works 100 times better on my server than harrod…

    I never sold any Cata plate pieces that needed essences of destruction. Cause people could not afford it.

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