Friday, January 7, 2011

Introducing The Glyph Rotation

A common way to ease into the glyph market as a new scribe is to begin with selling a small number of glyphs. The work required to maintain stock and keep up with sales is pretty simple, and it can be done without the help of any addons. A decent income can be made this way.

Once a new scribe becomes more comfortable with the market and can afford to maintain larger quantities of stock, addons become an excellent way to automate parts of the glyph crafting and selling processes. Addons can literally shave hours off of a scribe's weekly time investment. The efficiency gains of a well-executed addon combination cannot be overstated, and the subsequent increase in earning potential is absolutely enormous.

However, even with the help of addons a hard working scribe with a large inventory has his work cut out for him on several levels: sourcing supplies, restocking inventory, posting glyphs, retrieving mail, observing the market and staying on top of competition. Each of these can easily become a full-time job, and too much time spent on any one of these is time not spent on the most important aspect of all: enjoying the game.

Enter: The Glyph Rotation

My solution to avoiding the long hours and eventual burnout is a technique I call the glyph rotation. Since first employing the glyph rotation I have been able to maintain a steady income while spending far less time stressing over the entire process, and spending much more time enjoying the game. The glyph rotation may not produce the same results as camping the Auction House for days on end, but it certainly will save you from hours of mindless cancel-and-repost AH PvP.

Whether you sell hundreds or handfuls of glyphs per day, the glyph rotation can help you spend less time crafting and selling glyphs while still generating income. But generally, the glyph rotation's usefulness scales with inventory size. If you're only selling from a pool of 10 glyphs, the glyph rotation is probably overkill.

My actual recent glyph sales, and income since December 1, 2010.
How It Works

No addons are required, but they are definitely not forbidden. By all means, use any tool at your disposal to get things done. And remember to relax, enjoy the steady income, and enjoy the game.

Divide Your Inventory

First, divide your inventory into several smaller chunks. It doesn't matter exactly how you choose to divide it. For example, divide by class or by glyph type. Use addons, bags or guild bank tabs to separate the items. Aim for three to five chunks, but there are no strict limits. I've found that 5 chunks is my sweet spot of desired income for effort required. One of these chunks will be your "sale" chunk. The others are "rest" chunks, as in they are resting.

Sell One Chunk At A Time

Choose one chunk and sell glyphs from it. Let the other chunks rest while you do this. Yes, you may be missing out on sales from the resting chunks. Remember: this is about spending less time selling glyphs while still making some gold. By allowing those other chunks to rest they become out of sight, out of mind as far as sales are concerned. You now have fewer glyphs to check competition on and will spend less time posting and collecting your AH mail.

Switch It Up

When stock of your sale chunk gets low, glyph sales begin to slow or for any other reason you decide you want to change things up, switch to selling glyphs from another chunk (it doesn't matter which chunk) and let what's left of the first chunk rest. This is heart of the glyph rotation.

Source New Supplies

Continually be on the lookout for new supplies. Whether you get herbs from a farmer or choose to buy pre-made ink on the AH, always be looking for deals on supplies you can use to replenish your stock. Don't go too crazy with this, though. There should be plenty of time to replenish a low-stock chunk before it comes up again in the rotation.

Replenish Stock

Each time you switch to selling from a new chunk, you put to rest a chunk that probably needs replenishing. Don't worry too much about topping it off right away. You've likely got one or more other chunks that need replenishing as well. Focus mainly on replenishing the chunk that will come up next in the rotation, topping up the others here and there along the way if you have time. By focusing only on one chunk at a time, you will spend less time crafting.

Try to schedule a "restocking" day. I usually restock my inventory on Saturdays. The supplies you've been continually sourcing should be enough to top things off. But don't worry about incomplete stacks when a chunk comes up for sale. It's OK if you're only able to fill [Glyph of Armors] up to 60% of normal stock. If you think the upcoming sale chunk isn't ready simply choose another chunk that is.

Additional Benefits

In addition to saving you precious time, another benefit of the glyph rotation is keeping your competition on their toes. If you constantly post one of each glyph or a small subset of really profitable glyphs you will become predictable. With the glyph rotation in full swing, you're never in one area of the market for too long. Your posting patterns become more difficult to track, especially if you vary your chunking and rotation.

Another benefit I particularly like is you will not need to worry as much about falling victim to many of the old AH tricks. In fact, I almost completely ignore them. Certainly, cancel-and-repost if you feel like it. I almost never do, and I still sell plenty of glyphs by posting only once a day.

Notice an unsurmountable glyph wall on Mage glyphs? Switch to selling Hunter glyphs instead. Have an annoying AH camper consistently undercutting every glyph in your current chunk by 1 copper? Do some research, and switch to a chunk where that player will not bother you as much. Just getting bored with minor glyphs for no good reason? Switch it up!

Now It's Your Turn

The glyph rotation technique works great for me which is why I'm sharing it with you. I now spend noticeably less time crafting and selling glyphs and I still enjoy a steady income and very little stress. Relax, sell some glyphs, enjoy the steady income and most importantly, enjoy the game.

I'd love to hear feedback from anyone who has tried the glyph rotation (or a similar technique) themselves. Drop a comment if you feel like sharing. Thanks for reading.