The economy of Ragnarok Online is a complex entity. Players have multiple ways of looking for and trading for items they desire. The following is a compendium of the various means that can be used to seek out items in the game. Marketplaces outside the game also exist on official websites, fansites, guild websites, etc. The most common trading method in the game by far is to exchange an item or items for Zeny, the currency used in the game.
- Main article: Vending
Vending gives Merchant and Super Novice-type characters the ability to open shops if the character has equipped a Pushcart. Only items inside the Pushcart Inventory can be sold through Vending, and the maximum price for vended items is 99,990,000 Zeny. Merchants and Super Novices with Level 1 Vending can only vend 3 items at once, but increasing this skill's level will increase the maximum amount of concurrently vended items.
- Main article: Auction System
The Auction System is a feature allowing high-priced items to be auctioned via an automated in-game system, versus offline or chat negotiating. Due to the high fees and somewhat high minimum bid amounts, the system has proven to be unpopular, seeing almost no use on iRO. Auction Houses can be found in multiple cities, but each house independent from the others. The main advantage of the system is its automation, allowing players to auction items without sacrificing an account by having to leave a chat or vend up in the game.
Catalogs allow players to easily search for items in-game, and even buy/sell directly from the catalog interface.
- Window Shopper Catalogs will display the shop name, the item, number of items. You can search up to 10 times with this item. It will also highlight the shop window in yellow on your screen. They are sold by the Catalog Magician (moc_para01 22, 16) in the Eden Group Headquarters.
- Bargain Hunter Catalogs have the same functions as the Window Shopper, but adds the additional feature of being able to remotely open the shop window and purchase/sell items directly to/from the shop. Bargain Hunter Catalogs are obtainable by purchase from the Kafra Shop.
- Black Market Catalogs are identical in function to the Bargain Hunter Catalogs, but are only obtainable during special events.
- Main article: Buying Store
A Buying Store (also known as a Purchase Shop) is a player-generated "store" where players can input items they would like to buy, with a specific amount of Zeny willing to be paid. Players must have one of item they are seeking to purchase already in their inventory. Only certain items can be purchased through a Buying Store:
- Etc. Items
- Non-Brewed Consumable Items
Buying Stores are created via different means based on what class the player is. Non-Merchant type characters must purchase consumable items while Merchant-types open stores via the skill Open Buying Store much like a normal shop is opened via using the Vending skill.
While not a system per-se, players may use chatrooms to advertise the buying/selling/auctioning of items. The advantages of this are its simplicity and the ability of every class to use it. Deals can be easily completed by the Trade Window instead of a formal shop or auction.