- I was below level 85
- I was level 85 with no maxed professions
- I was level 85 (or 75 depending on the professions) with two maxed professions
I think the answer really varies with the situation but the above subcategories should give enough variety in the answers that one of them should be able to get you gold quickly. So for the answers to the questions...
1) How would I make gold if I had low capital and I was below level 85?
This is a pretty easy one. First download and install Gathermate2, and RecipeProfit (also don't forget to get the Gathermate 2 data). This will show icons on your minimap whenever you are near a vendor that sells recipies on a spawn timer. Then everytime you go into a town or city make sure to check all of the vendors and buy any recipe you can. List these recipies on the Auction House to start some money coming in.
Second - drop whatever professions you have and pick up mining and herbalism - even if you are already a decently high level and have invested in other professions. The fact is that what ever professions you have aren't making you money (hence your low capital) so drop them. You can pick them up later when you have some money and can max them out so you will actually be able to get some recipes that make decent money.
Once you have both mining and herbalism level them up. Take some time out from your normal leveling and get both skills to a level where you have the skill to mine and gather herbs in your current leveling area. Sell EVERYTHING you gather on the Auction House. While you are selling on the Auction House you want to look to see if you can reset the market for any of the herbs and minerals you are selling (pay special attention to gold and silver ore). To know if the market can be reset simply see if any of the minerals or herbs are selling below their normal value. If they are - and you have the money - buy them up and relist them. Herbs and minerals sell quickly so you don't have to worry too much about getting stuck with them. Once you have a bit of money you can also start to do resale searches of the Auction House. Continue gathering and selling ore and herbs, resetting the prices on items you list when possible, selling rare vendor recipies, and doing resale searches until you hit level 85. At this point you should have a nice little nest egg - unless you have a massive spending problem.
2) How would I make gold if I had low capital and I was level 85 with no maxed professions?
First if I were in this situation I would do all of the above suggestions. Get Gathermate2 and RecipeProfit, pick up herbalism and mining, sell herbs and minerals on the Auction House, reset markets when possible, and sell rare vendor items. In addition, however, you need to seriously look at your spending. If you are level 85 and have no capital you are spending too much. Period. Questing and loot alone at this point should give you a little something to spend. If you don't have it - you need to stop purchasing items. What I would recommend is set a time period where you will buy nothing for your character besides food and repairs unless you are investing in making gold (In other words buying a weapon to relist on the Auction House is fine while buying a weapon to equip isn't). Even just a week of this would work wonders. During this time continue to quest and/or run instances, loot mobs, gather ore and herbs, etc. Once your self imposed spending ban is done with you should find that you have quite a bit of gold to spend on your character AND to continue your gold making business.
3) How would I make gold if I had low capital and I was level 85 with no maxed professions?
The answer to this one really depends on the professions but I will provide some guidelines.
If you have 1 or 2 gathering professions and you do farm a bit then your problem is in spending. You need to seriously look at what you spend your gold on. Give your self a spending gold ban (only buy food and repair items for your toon) for a little while. Do some farming, sell your goods on the Auction House and start to resell items from the Auction House. This should give you a bit of money with which you can either change professions (see here and here for my profession choosing advice) or simply to continue to farm and resell items.
If you have 1 or 2 converting or crafting professions you still need to give yourself a spending ban. While on your ban you need to figure out what items you can make and sell on the Auction House for a profit. This will depend on your professions and your server so I can't give you an exact answer on what to craft in this post but there are a few places you can go for help.
Check out the archives for this blog and the other blogs on my blogroll to find some tips for your professions.
Check out the Undermine Journal (U.S. realms only) to get information on the pricing and market size of both crafted items and materials.
Attend one of the weekly teamspeak meetings held by JMTC and ask your question there.
Head over to the WoWgoldmaking Reddit and post your professions and server and ask for some input on good items to craft for profit.
If you want a bit of extended help you can also hire a coach from JMTC to give more detailed and personalized assistance.
I hope this helps and have fun getting your starting capital and making gold forever afterwards!