Over on the subreddit WoWEconomy there was a post where the poster was asking all sorts of questions about the transmog market. I thought there were a lot of great questions that people could benefit from, so I asked the poster if I could address them in my blog and he happily obliged. So here's a little Q & A snippet I think those of you who are considering the transmog market will find interesting!
Q: About a week or two ago I found the Undermine Journal, which led me to the idea that money could be made on my server by buying low and selling a little higher. Is the undermine journal a reputable system to find great deals on your auction house?
A: Yes and no, but mostly yes. A lot of times TUJ can be a great indicator of what an item will go for, but always take it with a grain of salt. With TSM you can import either Wowuction or TUJ data in game, to get a feel for what the region pricing looks like for an item. In the transmog market this is key. Is it selling for a markup on other servers as well? That's a good deal. Definitely use the TSM App to it's highest potential to get accurate data as well.
There's actually an official TUJ addon that works well with TSM and can be used as a pricing source (/tsm sources). I would suggest this since you seem to prefer TUJ, and that can be found here, and is updated weekly through the Curse Client for accurate cross realm gold data for items!
Q: What advice do you have about what items to watch? I've read through many blogs and they've stated plate and mail are the best sellers- does this mean I should stay away from cloth if I'm attempting to make a valid in game income in this market?
A: I don't shy away from cloth, there are actually quite a few (ie. very, interesting, sets, you, could) great sets that you can flip, and they're usually on many TSM Transmog Shopping Lists, including my own. What I suggest is using the addon Mogit to give you mouseover tooltips of the items in game so you can verify "Yes I think this will sell" or "What was Phat thinking putting this item on his list?" And customize it to your own preferences.
Q: How do I deal with competition? There is currently another Transmog flipper on my server who, what appears, uses some addon to post his Transmogs as the price they are selling for are nearly the same as what the global median is listed as on Undermine. I find things throughout the day, buy them really cheaply and flip, often selling an item he has listed for 2-300g less, as I've only spent ~30g on the item in the first place. Is that a bad idea?
A: As mentioned above, you can use the TUJGE addon as a price source in TSM for posting items, it might be smart, once you get this set up, to set thresholds and fallbacks as %'s of this price source and play undercut with your competition. On the other hand, when you go very low you also appeal to levelers as well, so you would have that going for you. Some hypothetical prices for an Auctioning Operation you could list at to deal with your competition (I'd use market, but you can use median):
Minimum: 50% TUJGEMarket
Normal: 100% TUJGEMarket
Maximum: 175% TUJGEMarket
That's what I'd start with, and adapt those prices as I go to better fit my needs. This way you could also make a Shopping Operation that looked for items as a % of the TUJGEMarket or TUJGEMedian value as well. Make them all match!
Q: I understand the true beauty of cornering a Transmog market doesn't happen until you have a huge inventory. Once I get to that point, how have you managed your inventory on a daily basis? Is a spreadsheet really needed?
A: Nope, just TSM really. I personally repost every 48 hours, but you may want to stick with 12 or 24 if your competition is breathing down your neck. I use a level 1 toon that does nothing but transmog, and has huge bags (26x4 and Backpack for 120 slots). This is great because he's guaranteed to never have anything clogging up his bags, and I can keep it out of my other markets.
Q: At what point does your personal income become less stagnant? I mean, when should I expect to start seeing relative gains compared to my disposable inventory?
A: As far as how soon you hit gains, this will really depend on the size of your server and the health of your transmog market as a whole. For example RP high pop servers, you'll make it really fast, where as a normal low pop server it's going to take quite some time.
If you're looking for a flipping market with fast returns, transmog is not really the place to be. Leveling gear searches as well as pattern flipping (and many more) are ususally quicker on returns and things that I'd suggest before transmog. It's a great gold maker, but inventory management alone is very daunting and time consuming, when, like you said, you get that huge pile of items your constantly cycling in and out of the AH for maybe a small % of it to sell. Profitable though, indeed it is!
Q: How important is TradeskillMaster? I've never been very good with any addon that dealt with the AH. Is it a requirement for this market or would a well organized person with access to the remote auction house all day be able to do well with just the Undermine Journal as a tool? How much am I missing out by refusing to use TSM?
A: You will not be able to compete in the transmog market without learning TSM, especially if you have competition.
Learn TSM Videos
All the Official TSM Modules
Q: As far as the Undermine Journal goes, what specifically do you use it for? Have you been able to gain a hold on a market using only this platform?
A: The Great Deals page will surely alert you to some deals on your AH you may not have otherwise found, but using the addon in game will give you such an extreme advantage over this it's sickening. TSM's greatest asset is that (in the long run) it will save you a lot of time. Learning curve, yes, but very worth it!
If you want to check out and/or reply to the original thread you can find it here! Thanks for reading guys, if you have any related transmog questions feel free to ask!