I try to get myself to spend at least 5 minutes actively earning ISK every time I log in for a proper EVE session. In 0.0 this might be to run through the belts until I get a Battleship Spawn. In Empire it might be to update my trade orders, or do a PI run, or clear out an anomaly or fill the hold of a Venture. It doesn’t matter how much it earns, it is just important that you are active.
There are two reasons for this. First – don’t undervalue the small ISK windfalls from these endeavors. They have a habit of adding up over time. Second, it can help get you into a mindset of achieving something with your EVE time, and reduces the chance of you ending up spinning ships for a while then logging off.
I remarked the other day about earning only 4M ISK from an hour of Hi Sec exploration. Despite the jokes, I did not view that as wasted time. I was 4M wealthier than if I had of remained docked. I was also playing the exploration game with its random drops. A couple of months ago I undocked, ran one of the lowest of low Anomalies, and had a faction Spawn which earnt me 180M. It took less than 5 minutes.
It’s that old adage of having to be in it to win it.
On the weekend I started my EVE session with running two Level 4 Mining Missions. I dual boxed these with my Main and Main Alt, which halved the time. It took 40 minutes from logging in to completion, and between LP and payouts, was worth around 10M ISK.
While I was mining I logged my Industry Alt in and update all my Trade Orders, taking around 15 minutes. The value of this time is not clear cut – but over the last few months I have been earning well in excess of 50M ISK for each hour I put into trading. I’ll estimate my earning at a very conservative 30M an hour, so that session was worth around 7.5M ISK. **
I moved back to my nearby home system and noticed a lot of anomalies on scan. I grabbed the PVE Retribution and ran 6 in quick succession. It took around 15 minutes and my journal suggested I earnt 2M in bounties. I did not loot or salvage, but bookmarked the first wreck in each site.
On the last site I had a Faction Spawn, which dropped a 5M module.
I returned to station, swapped into a Noctis, and quickly cleaned up the 6 sites. I got lucky with Armor Plates and an expensive T1 module in the drops, and made another 4M ISK.
So after a bit over an hour of just doing small little tasks, I ended up earning myself around 28.5M ISK.
Now – I have three accounts so I could dual box mining while also updating trade orders. You could argue the ISK return was poor. Still, I’m not complaining. As I said, that sort of ISK – which is very achievable, adds up over time.
The example above – obviously there to make my point, was not entirely honest. I actually took note of how much I earnt in those 15 minutes of trading. I flipped a ship hull which gave me a profit of 100M within a few hours, picked up a Faction Mod (60M profit a few days later in Jita), a Mining Barge Hull (20M profit turned within a week), and a dozen smaller items (which would have flipped for more than 10M profit over the next week or two). In effect I earnt closer to 200M in those 15 minutes, for a total of around 220M for my hour. That doesn’t happen every day, but it can be surprising what you can achieve when you are in game and active.
It all adds up as every little bit helps. Over time it grows.