The Easiest Way to Make Money from Games: Selling In-game Items


Let’s face it—we’ve all fantasized about making real money from all the random items you find in loot boxes in games. Imagine earning money from playing your favorite games! (Without needing all that annoying skill and dedication the pros put in)

This isn’t a fantasy anymore; it’s a lucrative reality for gamers who decide to put items from games up for sale online.

Player-to-player trading platforms are generating billions in revenue and the market is growing year on year. The most expensive item ever sold was an ENTIRE PLANET in Entropia Universe for $6 million. Now, not every item you try to sell is going to be worth that much, sure, but here’s the thing. If you can find a buyer then it’s free money for playing games. If you’re going to be playing anyway then you might as well right?

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The First Step

Find a marketplace that suits you. There’s a world of choice when it comes to platforms that allow you to sell items but you basically only have two choices when picking your platform:

  • Established platforms with a saturated market
  • Newer platforms with less traffic

Using an established platform will mean that your item is being presented to more users, but it also means that there’s way more people selling probably the same items you are and probably for cheaper. The subtle game of marketing and advertising your listing to entice a buyer becomes your concern.

Using a newer platform means that you have all the space, you can find the gap in the market and you can fill it. Anyone who is looking for that item will come straight to you, no one to contend with. Sure, there’s less people actually walking down your street, but you’re the only shop around.

So the question you ask yourself when looking for a platform is “Do I want to be a small fish in a giant pond, or a giant fish in a small pond?”

Maximizing Sales

Here are some detailed tips for those looking to maximize their sales:

Pricing Strategy:

  • Set the right price to maximize profits and attract buyers.
  • Research item rarity, market demand, and historical prices.
  • Be competitive but don’t undervalue your items.
  • Adjust prices based on market trends

Listing Optimization:

  • Create compelling listings with high-quality images and detailed descriptions.
  • Highlight unique features and rare attributes.
  • Use marketing techniques like discounts, bundles, or bonus items.
  • Update listings to maintain visibility.

Timing Your Sales:

  • For items that depreciate, sell before game patches or updates.
  • Keep track of game update schedules and plan sales
  • Capitalize on current market demand and avoid losses due to depreciation.
  • Stay informed about game changes and adjust strategy as needed.

Buying Low and Selling High:

  • Identify and buy undervalued items.
  • Be patient and quick to make decisions.
  • Hold items until market conditions are favourable for reselling.
  • Check market trends and expect demand increases.
  • Set competitive prices to maximize profit margins.
  • Consider transaction fees or taxes when calculating profits.

There’s a lot of things to consider if you want to start seriously trading items. It can be a little overwhelming. Especially if you think that if you don’t get all of this right straight away then you’ll crash and burn. The good news is that the most important thing to do when selling in games items is to get started. I can guarantee that you’ll learn all this as you go and it’ll be second nature. If you never get started and actually sell the items then knowing this won’t actually do anything for you. Take that first step and then you can worry about learning all this later.

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Diversify Your Trading Portfolio

If you only sell one type of item for one game then you may run into some issues. Games are popular for a lot of reasons and they don’t always stay popular. Gamers are always looking for the next big game and you want to make sure you’re doing that with them.

Here’s a few things to consider:

  • Trade in items across multiple games to stabilize income and reduce market risks.
  • Establish a seller profile to enhance credibility and attract more buyers.
  • Specialize in particular games to build trust with customers.

Sometimes trading is like fishing, throwing out more lines can lead to more fish.

Navigating Legalities

 When setting up an online shop it might be easy to assume that it’s not a regular business. You’re only doing it for a bit of extra cash and it’s not like it’s a “real job”. That often simply isn’t true. If you’re making money then there’s going to be rules around whatever it is you’re doing, like:

  • Taxes: Just like with any other income, you’ll need to pay taxes on your sales. Track your earnings and always pay your taxes.
  • Regulations: Every country and region have their own laws and regulations. Do some research and find out all the regulations you should follow around selling virtual items.
  • Terms of Service: READ THE FINE PRINT! Be sure you’re not violating any terms of service when selling your items. Every game will have rules around selling items in the terms of service, some are all for it and some not so much.
  • Fraud Prevention: Use secure payment methods and be on the lookout for scams. A good rule of thumb is “If something smells fishy, it’s probably a fish.”

Taking the necessary steps means you can avoid the potential legal problems and focus on growing your business. It may not be the most exciting part of the job, but trust me, it’s worth the effort.

The in-game item trading world offers amazing opportunities for those willing to put in the effort. Ready to start capitalizing on these opportunities? Let’s get gaming—and earning!

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