Friday, September 14, 2012

Why Bots Fail (Part 2 of 5)

In this series, we are looking into ten (10) reasons why bots fail.

[3] Use a fast PC

This one may not look so obvious but it is just as important.  I didn’t realize how important it was until I saw this for myself.  I had done a rebuilding of my home network and noticed that the number of bot transactions had dropped to nearly zero.  I thought that somehow my wife was fiddling with the network or something along those lines.  She assured me had not.  So, while she was out doing errands, I decided to conduct a trade.  The experience drove this point home.

The bot took two (2) minutes to acknowledge that I had entered the store.  It took another minute before I was able to flip a page in the catalog.  While I was eventually able to purchase a card, the entire purchase took ten (10) minutes.  While the bot was able to complete the transfer, I also understood why I was receiving few sales.  Having a slow PC gave the customer a non-professional experience and many players are simply not going to wait to see what is available or how much a specific card is.  Knowing this, I was able to figure out where the bottlenecks were, fix them, and within a week, sales returned to normal.

By the way, by a fast PC I do not necessarily mean a fast CPU speed.   If your computer (or VM) does not have enough memory, or if the hard drive is not fast enough, your customers will have a sub-standard experience and will simply find another for a more professional experience.

[4] Do not go under 100 tickets.

This may seem like a waste of tickets, especially if one is running a part time bot.  However, having at least 100 tickets indicates that your bot probably has a well stocked inventory and that your bot is rich enough to purchase whatever your customers want to sell. 

Back before I ran my bots, I tended to avoid bots with fewer than 20 tickets available and tended to gravitate towards those which had at least 100 available.  It was more subtle that anything else.  It indicates an aura of professionalism and liquidity and available inventory not found on bots with fewer than say 50 tickets.

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