Using TradeSkillMaster and WoWuction To Quickly Find Bargains

As we mentioned on The Power Word: Gold Podcast Episode 059 we've been exported data from the Bargain Hunter Reports and importing it into temporary TradeSkillMaster shopping lists to quickly search for bargains.

Read past the jump for the complete step-by-step tutorial on how you can do this yourself.

What Is A Bargain?

The items that we most often find on the WoWuction Bargain Hunter Reports are transmog items with a few 77-79 and 83-84 flipping items. Other types off items show up in the results as well so you never know what you might find.

You still have to use your brain to determine if an item will sell. Often that knowledge is gained from experience selling the items over a long period of time.

Luckily for new auctioneers WoWuction offers a "Potential Market Price" (PMkt Price) column that lists the price that WoWuction thinks you should put the item up for based on past sales data.

This means that if you see a transmog item that you would like to sell but don't have an idea what to sell it for you can use the price in the "PMkt Price" column as a starting point.

Use Common Sense

When looking through the items that we will be finding in the searches we're going to do you should use your own good judgement as to what you feel will sell on your server.

As noted on the bottom of the WoWuction Bargain Hunter page: "Please use common sense in identifying which of these to buy!"

Simply because WoWuction thinks that something is a bargain is no guarantee that it will sell. Experience gained overtime is the best tool to have when choosing which item to buy.

Cool New Toys

We're not sure how long ago WoWuction added the ability to export items listed on it's results pages as TradeSkillMaster shopping lists but we're sure glad they did.

WoWuction export item IDs button.

If you look in the top right corner of almost any results page or tab in WoWuction you'll see what appears to be two cylinders with a green arrow over them. (See image above.)

This is the magical feature that we will be using to quickly export the Bargain Hunting lists for import into TradeSkillMaster. Get used to seeing it. You'll be using it every day.

Export Bargain Hunter Lists

In order to be able to export Bargain Hunter lists you first need to head to and select your server and faction.

WoWuction > Reports > Bargain Hunter.

Once you have your server and faction selected mouse over "Reports" and select "Bargain Hunter".

WoWuction's Bargain Hunter  > Weapons

You will be presented with a view that has multiple tabs. The default tab will be "Weapons". We're going to be using that tab as well as the "Armor" tab to create our lists today.

Exporting TSM Shopping List from WoWuction

Once on the Weapons tab of Bargain Hunter click on the export item IDs button on the upper right of the "Potential Bargains" table and choose "TSM Shopping List" as the export type.

Once WoWuction has exported the list select it and copy it to your clipboard. We will be using this text to create a shopping list next.

We now have TSM Shopping List-importable text that includes items that WoWuction thinks could be potential good deals to look at for flipping.

Creating a TSM Shopping List

Let's import this list into TradeSkillMaster and look through the results.

Open TradeSkillMaster's options by pressing its minimap button or typing "/tsm" into the chat box.

TradeSkillMaster Shopping Options

Once open select the Shopping Options icon at the top left.

Select "Shopping Lists"

Once on the Shopping Options click the "Shopping Lists" text in the left column.

Click the Import Shopping List button.

Next press the "Import Shopping List" button on the right column.

TSM_Shopping Import List Window.
This will bring up a new "TSM_Shopping - Import List" widow. This is the window where we will be pasting the exported WoWuction list we copied earlier.

(While you can add a name in the "List Name" field I've found it's faster to just leave it blank as TSM will automatically title the list "Impoted List". It may only shave a few second off the operation but the more time we can save the better.)

Paste the list exported from WoWuction.

Click inside the "List Data" and paste the list that we copied earlier from WoWuction.

Once the text is pasted into the box click "Accept" then click the "Import List" button.

Imported Shopping List.

TSM will them import the list and create a new shopping list entitled "Imported List" (if you chose to save time by not naming it) and you will be shown the new list's "Items" tab.

(One thing you may notice is that some items seem to be listed as numbers (item IDs) and some are listed as the actual names of the items. This is fine. TradeSkillMaster doesn't always show the item names right away and it won't affedt your searches at all. If you click to another option page and back the names should appear but again you don't need to do that for the list to work.)

Now we have a new list entitled "Imported List" that has the items listed on the WoWuction Bargain Hunter page (in this case the "Weapons" tab).

Repeat the steps above to export and import/create a TSM shopping list for the WoWuction Bargain Hunter "Armor" page.

I normally end up with two shopping lists ready to the check the auction house with. One for Bargain Hunter Weapons and one for Bargain Hunter Armor.

(ProTip: If you're a copy and paste ninja you can even create one giant list for both Armor and Weapons by selecting everything before the "$" of the first list, paste it into the TSM import window, add a "," and then select and paste everything after the first "@" of the second list thereby melding two lists into on on the fly. Efficiency.)

Get MogIt To Help Find Good Looks

I would be sure to have the MogIt addon installed as it gives very handy visual previews of what items looks like right next to your mouse.

This is very useful for quickly evaluating which of these items may be good looking and therefore good potential candidates for transmog.

I will be showing how I use MogIt as part of me selection flow below.

Searching For Flippable Items

Now that we have our Bargain Hunter lists exported from WoWuction and imported into TradeSkillMaster as Shopping Lists we can now search the auction house for the items.

To run the Shopping List search open the Auction House and click on the "TSM" tab at the bottom (if it is not the default).

TSM Shopping > Search Panel

Often the "Shopping > Search" page will be the first page that you see when opening TSM. If not click on "Search" in the "Shopping" section on the left column.

Once on the Shopping > Search panel we can see the imported shopping list listed under the "Shopping/Dealfinding Lists" section in the right hand column.

(This section can also be accessed by pressing the "Saved Searches" tab at the top of the TSM window.)

TSM Shopping/Dealfinding Lists column.
To run our new shopping list we simply press the name of the list in the "Shopping/Dealfinding Lists" column. In this case we will be clicking on the "Imported List" text to start the shopping list search.

Once you click the name of the search TradeSkillMaster will do the search and show you the results.

Sifting Through The Results

(While I was using the "Weapons" search as an example earlier in this tutorial I've switched to the "Armor" Bargain Hunter list for this section as there are often more results and I can better demonstrate the way I search.)

Sorting search results by price.

After the scan has run (or while it's running) I sort the results by the cheapest first. You do this by pressing the "Price Per Item" column header until the cheapest items are listed at the top.

The major reason to sort the results by price is that there may be multiple of the same items, some more expensive than the others. We're only looking for the items that WoWuction was alerting us to that are under-priced.

As far as sifting through the cheap results there are a few ways to help the process. If you know the markets well yo may be able to simply glance at the item names and buy out items that you know will sell.

Another way to sift through these items is to use MogIt while mousing over the icons. Mogit will show you a visual preview of the item and you can fairly quickly determine if there are any noteworthy transmog items that you should be picking up.

Often the reason why an item is on WoWuction's Bargain Hunter page is because it's use in transmog (but not always).

MogIt addon visual item preview. 

In the above image you can see MogIt giving me a visual preview for a pair of War Paint Legguards. I may want to pick up this item because it has a unique look.

(Doing these searches on a female character will give you a better idea about what items may sell for transmog. Like it or not much of the transmog market is driven by items that show off the female figure.)

I simply now go through the results that cost up to 75g or so and look for any standouts. They may be visual standouts such as transmog items.

They may also be 77-79 Cataclysm or 83-84 Mists of Pandaria flipping items that I am familiar with from running those markets.

WoWuction sorting by AH Cheapest

If you're just getting into the market you can try to find the items you have purchased by sorting the Bargain Hunter charts by cheapest items (likely the one's you've purchased) by clicking the "AH Cheapest" column header.

WoWuction Potential Market Price.

Once you get the items sorted by cheapest you can try matching up items you have purchased and following the "PMkt Price" (Potential Market Price) suggestions for your price when re-listing these items for sale.

Delete The Groups When Done

As you will likely be recreating these groups on a daily basis I find it it good to delete the groups I've created after using them to search the auction house.

Since the Bargain Hunter page is updated hourly any old lists I have aren't very useful the next time I search.

To delete the shopping lists once your done have the list name selected in Shopping Options, click the "List Management  tab and press "

Deleting TSM lists after use.

Again the main reason to delete the lists after searching for items (which we will be getting to next) is to clear them away so you don't end up with lots of old out-of-date lists.

Wrapping Up

We now have an efficient way to quickly find potential bargains and/or items worth flipping (via WoWuction's Bargain Hunter Reports), export them to TSM Shopping lists (via WoWuction's export item IDs button), import them into TSM and use the resulting shopping lists to search the AH and find items to sell.

When you do find items to sell you can purchase them and then use your own experience with pricing or WoWuction's Potential Market Price (PMkt Price) as a guideline to price them for resale.

This is a process I now use on a daily (or multiple times per day) basis to quickly look for items that are worth flipping on my server and faction.

A Word Of Caution

I want to emphasis that the best thing anyone trying this can have lots of experience in the markets they are buying items in.

I have lots of experience in transmog and level 77-79 and 83-84 flipping markets. I can know just by looking at an item what it should sell for.

What I don't want is for anyone to go crazy and spend all their gold on items they find on these lists and then get disappointed if they don't sell.

That said, don't be afraid to venture somewhat outside your comfort zone. One of the things that auction house data websites like WoWuction and The Undermine Journal is data. Data that we wouldn't otherwise have.

These are great tools. Wonderful tools. But like any tool they can be used and misused by people who don't know what they are doing.

Unfortunately the only way to get the knowledge on how to use these tools is to use them so get practicing and have fun hunting for bargains!

Like this post? Get even more Power Word: Gold - Purchase our 100-Page Illustrated Gold Guide, subscribe via RSS, subscribe to the Podcast via iTunes or RSS, watch our Livestreams, follow us on Twitter, Circle us on Google+, Like us on Facebook, subscribe via Youtube and join us on reddit.


  1. I was listening to your last live stream and you was talking this post. I had a read and followed your post and within 10 mins i had found a bargin and make 1400 gold profit!!

    Thanks Jim!