Life and Times of a Space Trader (Part Three)

Art Vandolay 2019-11-06

Sitting in front of the Market Interface updating orders every five minutes is not fun.  It is profitable and maximum ISK/Hour but leads to quick burnout and abysmal Fun/Hour. I came back to Eve with a vengeance to not only outsmart this profession, but to do it in such a manner that I would make the ISK I desired without spending every waking moment stuck in Jita 4-4.

One profitable trade item is great…when you can actually flip it.  No longer would I be beholden to those one items. Willing to step out of my comfort zone I took on a new approach, one that I had heard repeatedly outside of Eve:  Diversification.  

With ISK/Hour out the window and the necessity to actually play my spaceship game in space, I created a few rules that I would adhere to:

  • First:  I would no longer be a slave to the Market Interface.  
  • Second:  I would make as much ISK as I could while spending the least amount of time updating orders.
  • Third:  I would make profit, not the most profit, but profit none the less.

That Quickbar tab interested me for the first time.  I decided to go through the Browse tab one last time, category by category, and add all potential good trades to my Quickbar.  Wanting to do it right, I spent about a week on this portion of my process.  

Next, I categorized my trading markets into folders.  There are many different methods and naming conventions, but I decided to go with Types, and then categorize by price.  Completing this daunting and painstaking task, I created one more folder, my Bread and Butter category.  

I had potential items to trade, and capital to invest.  My process for selecting items to get into was in it’s beginning stages, and I was fully aware that I was a long way from having a fully optimized list.  Matter of fact, as the game and meta progresses, no such list will ever be fully optimized.

Now I was ready to put my experimental theory to the test.  Time spent checking price histories and quantity of items moved is never time wasted, but I wanted Fun/Hour, not maximum ISK/Hour.  If I could make a profit on a flip in a relative decent time frame, I was more then willing to enter that market.  

Keeping in mind that I did have a sizable amount of capital to utilize as my seed money, and wanting to take a shotgun approach into diversification, I would set buy orders for tiny quantities on 50 plus different items.  

And you know what, a small fraction of my buy orders would result in purchases, large enough that I could keep the flips coming, winning on most, breaking even on some, and losing on few.  But the money would churn at a rate that I was content with.

My finances well on their way to being in order and I had time to play Eve.  And I love Eve. The reward of flying in space with fun people in fun ships doing fun things is something that no other game can match.  I was an apprentice in my chosen profession and would refine my process over the course of months and years.  

Blue Collar Trading, zero care for anything other then profits that could be realized in hours to days, while keeping in line with my first rule:  I would no longer be a slave to the Market Interface.  

Months of adding and pruning items as well as more accurately organizing my markets into easy to process folders significantly increased my profits.  In turn, I would process more items, and thus make more ISK, while keeping up with my second rule: I would make as much ISK as I could while spending the least amount of time updating orders.

Jita 4-4 epicenter of trade.  The revenue that flows through Jita is exponentially higher then any of the other now currently dwindling trade hubs.  There’s a reason for that, and foregoing this Mecca is to the detriment of any Trader. With the mantra of supply and demand in mind, which Jita is known for, competition naturally pushes prices down.  Amarr on the other hand still sees a lot of action. Pilots that inhabit that region, for one reason or another, do not mind paying a slightly higher premium on their wares. Be it convenience, time constraints, or the safety in avoiding extra jumps across space, the bottom line is that Amarr is an active trade hub.  

Items bought from Buy Orders in Jita for ~100,000,000 ISK routinely fetch ~124,000,000 ISK from Sell Orders in Amarr, compared to the slimmer margins of ~108,000,000 ISK from the Sell Orders in Jita, and even slimmer margins after Sales Tax and Broker Fees.  Compiled with every would-be trader and their alts all vying for the same “deals”.  

The next phase of my Trade Empire was realized, and the beginnings were put in place.  I quickly skilled up a new Trader alt and improved his Amarr standings. With an additional step in my process, shipping out product, I was concerned with reestablishing my success.  I discovered Red Frog Freight as well as the invaluable Hauler’s Channel. Finding a good balance between a fair reward, adequate collateral, and size of freight took some time, but didn’t slow down my venture too much.

And thus, my profession transitioned from a Market Trader to a Regional Arbitrage Trader.

 

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