Posted Fri, Feb 26, 2010 by Space Junkie
Newer players often mistakenly assume that they cannot make an impact on a market, or be a real player in keeping an area supplied. This is wrong-headed, and I will explain why: big-money types are attracted to the most lucrative, high-competition areas of a market. Small things will often slip through the cracks. Coincidentally, it's the small things that new players are most likely to notice.
With a very modest amount of investment capital, you can start reselling small yet valuable goods, that are purchased at a low cost in market hub systems and then resold at outskirts of high-sec or, if you're feeling brave, even farther.
Even if you decide this isn't for you, this guide may still provide some insight and inspiration for other aspects of the market. I highly recommend that you check out my guide on selling market staples, as a supplement to this.
High Value, Low Volume
A new player isn't going to be able to move around huge quantities of minerals or trade goods, nor have enough investment capital to buy much, nor expertise to know what to buy. That's all right. That all comes with time and experience, and here's something you can do in the meantime.
By carefully selecting items that will almost always sell for higher than they were purchased for, e.g. skillbooks, or small goods that major marketeers aren't going to bother with, and moving them somewhere that they are normally unavailable, you simultaneously add value to them, and cater to laziness, which is one of the driving forces of the economy in EVE Online.
Flirting With Danger
The best way to do this is to supply for an area of low-sec or null-sec, as I describe below. However, should you decide to flirt with danger, you will want to train into a Covert Ops ship. Covops, as they are commonly abbreviated, have the capability to warp while cloaked, making them slippery and very, very difficult to kill if the pilot using them is well practiced.
I divide my time in EVE Online into two periods: before I trained the skills to fly a covert ops ship, and after. Once you can fit a Covert Ops Cloaking Device II module, you will find that gate camps in low-sec hold no terror whatsoever for you, and even null-sec camps aren't automatically impassible. The "covops cloak" can only be fit on covert ops frigates and Stealth Bombers, which I have covered elsewhere (and heartily recommend flying).
In order to use a covops cloak, you need to train Cloaking IV and Electronics IV. In order to use a covops ship, you need to train your racial frigate skill (e.g. Caldari Frigate) to V, and Electronic Upgrades V.