The real ways to overcome failure in goldmaking

A deep dive into the friction between you and the gold you want to make. Learn how to overcome failure when making gold in this article which shows a lot of nifty tricks!


6/26/20247 min read

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Have you ever abandoned a goldmaking method because it was complicated or items were selling too slow? We all have. We see this nice “Make millions with this farm” and we get disappointed when we can’t replicate the results.

Today, I want to speak about the issues that you may have encountered. I call this friction. Friction is a force between two surfaces that are sliding, or trying to slide, across each other. In our situation, it’s the force between you and the gold you want to get. Why do some succeed while others abandon? How can we persevere and overcome these problems?

World of warcraft goldmaking friction
World of warcraft goldmaking friction

The different types of friction

Friction can come in many forms. Most people try to avoid friction, they usually make less gold. A great example of this is the popularity of raw gold farms. They are usually lower gold per hour but have little to no friction. Let’s look at some examples of things that can be very lucrative but that people avoid because of friction.

You go out to farm this rare recipe and it refuses to drop. That’s luck based or RNG based friction. RNG is definitely a huge form of friction for many. Some people just can’t stand being unlucky for a long period of time and abandon their journey.

A great deal of people have limited time. For example, they want to get into dragonflight professions but, to them, spending 1 hour per week for knowledge on each profession for 10 or 20 weeks is simply too much time. People that play this game for several hours a day can easily do that.

Lack of capital. In Shadowlands, the legendary crafting system was an expensive market to get into. Getting a recipe could cost you over 500 000 gold! Getting all the recipes would cost more than 10 million! If you don’t have much gold, you simply cannot get into this market!

Using the auction house. A substantial number of players hate using the auction house. It creates too much disappointment for them so they turn to raw gold farms. As much as it suits them, they will still receive a lot of items that are worth posting on the auction house. If not listed on the auction house, a lot of gold is lost.

Knowledge based friction. Some goldfarms are great because very few know about them. In previous articles, I’ve talked about elemental souls and blood of sargeras. The items crafted from bloods and souls should not be this expensive. Why are they so expensive? Because of knowledge based friction.

Competition. Have you ever entered a market but didn’t get any sales? Every time you check the auction house, multiple players have undercut you? This is likely because this market is very lucrative. How can you compete with someone posting every 2 minutes?

Patience. Unlocking the new Naxxramas farm can be a long process. Are you willing to spend 4 or 5 hours making nothing to unlock this farm? Many people will quit in the first hour and this is how the farm remains great!

Infrastructure. You want to farm a lot of pet charms with the shadowlands mission table but you don’t have enough characters to create new tables. In this example, the infrastructure is both the character and the table. You need to spend time leveling the character and then leveling the table. Once it’s done, it’s a permanent infrastructure added to your toolkit but most will give up before the end line.

Everything is hard before it is easy
Everything is hard before it is easy

Multiple levels of friction

As you may have noticed, sometimes there is more than one type of friction at once. Dragonflight professions need patience, time, are highly competitive and have some form of RNG with inspiration. Lots of knowledge is needed to understand the system. This is why people complain so much about Dragonflight professions. You can make a ton of gold with it, but with all this friction, very few can reach profitability.

Goldmaking with multiple layers of friction
Goldmaking with multiple layers of friction

Make it easy

In the book “Atomic habits” from James Clear, he talks about how to set durable habits in your life. In an example he gives, James talks about the lack of friction to join a gym versus the friction met when trying to unsubscribe from the gym. You can join the gym in 5 minutes online but if you want to leave, you need to go to the gym in person, bring an ID and fill some forms. The gym puts as many steps as possible to make it difficult.

They make it easy to join. If it was hard to join, they would struggle as a business. It’s the same thing in wow. If you want to get past the friction, your process matters enormously. Make hard things become easy by simplifying the process.

Make it easy by reducing friction
Make it easy by reducing friction

Making hard things easy. It’s hard to drink 8 glasses of water each day. However, it’s much easier if you have water sources in every room of your home. It remains a hard task but you can make the hard task easier. When the gym wants you to sign up, they make it as easy as possible. When you want to leave, they make it as hard as possible!

The same thing can apply to goldmaking friction. It’s hard to set up 20 new Shadowlands mission tables but it’s manageable to create a new one every week. Eventually, you’ll reach the desired 20. It’s annoying to farm a rare recipe but instead of grinding for several hours to get it, you could set 1 hour per week to farm it until you obtain it.

Overcoming each type of friction

Albert einstein quote
Albert einstein quote

RNG : This comes down to patience. Example: This recipe will drop on average in 4 hours. You could receive it in 1 minute but it could also take 12 hours. Do you want this recipe enough to be willing to risk spending 12 hours farming it? Get well informed on how rare the recipe is. The key with rng is to manage expectations and accept that you have no control over luck.

Time : This comes down to choosing your battles. If you play one hour per day, it’s probably not a good idea to get into Dragonflight professions unless you are very motivated and efficient. Find markets that suit your schedule.

Lack of capital : If you want to get into these markets, keep some gold around at all times. If you spend every gold you get, you could make it difficult to spend by increasing the friction to access your gold. Send the gold to a character that you never play. It’s not a bulletproof strategy but it creates another layer of friction to deny making a bad purchase. Friction works in both ways! If you don’t want to repeat a behavior, make the behavior harder to do!

Using the auction house : Again, it comes down to managing expectations. If you’re hoping to get this 500 000 gold item to sell in a day, you might get disappointed. However, if you don’t expect sales, every time you sell an item is a nice surprise. Take 5 minutes a day to post your items!

Knowledge : It comes down to staying informed. Watch a video on youtube once a week or subscribe to my newsletter to receive emails whenever a new article comes out. Ask any questions on my discord server or browse through goldmaking screenshots from members of my community to get inspired. Stay informed with streamers like myself on twitch for real time up to date goldmaking information. ( this was the shameless plug section lol )

Competition : Before getting into a market, make sure to know how competitive it is. Scan the auction house to see how fast people are posting the items. Are you willing to deal with this much competition? Learn to cancel scan and increase the number of posts you make as showed in my “how to improve your pet sales” article

Patience : Just like RNG, this is about managing expectations. If you keep doing thing A, you will eventually get thing B. Before even starting, are you ok with spending this amount of time doing A to get to B? If you don’t reach the end goal, the time spent is wasted.

Infrastructure : Having more infrastructure comes in many forms. Having all professions, all recipes, mission tables, 100 characters for profession cooldowns are examples of infrastructure. Building infrastructure gives you an advantage that other players don’t have access to. You are building a viable goldmaking factory. If infrastructure is a market you want to invest in, it’s important to work on it now and keep working on it. With alt armies being one of the best ways of making gold currently, it showcases the power of infrastructure. It’s an investment in yourself and it creates prosperity.

Overcoming goldmaking friction cheat sheet
Overcoming goldmaking friction cheat sheet

Every good goldmaking method usually has friction. It’s important to face the friction that suits you. Choose your battles. When you start overcoming friction regularly, you don’t really see it anymore. That’s because your brain will remember the big reward that comes from the struggle. Today, it’s not easy. Tomorrow, slightly easier. A month later, it’s routine. Explore, identify the friction, find ways to overcome it and finally, get the big reward!

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