Pandemic times are difficult for all industries, but those that relied heavily on in-person, luxury purchases – like purchasing art – are suffering even more. For many artists, the lack of in-person contact is driving them to find ways to sell art online.
If you are trying to figure out how to sell your art online, download this Free Photographer Selling Guide now! Building an online presence that draws on your foundation in your local art scene can help you not just survive in times of change, but learn to thrive.
Your Digital Presence
Without galleries, museums, and other public spaces to meet buyers and sell art, it is time to turn towards building an online presence, both through social media and e-commerce.
Social media gives your buyers and collectors a direct line to you. You can cultivate an artist’s persona online to add your digital presence. Followers may be curious to see your works in progress or your studio space. Your work will still speak for itself, just use social media to give it a voice contextual backdrop.
Do you have a body of work that you can showcase online? It can be hard to catch the eyes of online browsers with piecemeal work. Work to build up your collection and then post it all at once to encourage browsing and longer time spent on your website or social media.
How to Pick a Store
Choosing an e-commerce platform is a decision that may take some research. You’ll want to choose one that offers the best fees and makes it easy to work with whoever will be manufacturing your prints or products.
There are two basic e-commerce set-ups that you can pursue.
- The first is a no-cost-upfront storefront on a site like Etsy. The site hosting, security certificates, payment processing, shipping labels, and more are all handled by the website. In exchange, the site takes a percentage of your sales (note: your payment processor like Paypal may also get a percentage).
- The other option is to pay upfront to build a website that you can host your work on and sell from directly. You may need to shoulder the costs of a domain name, security certificates, plug-ins, and more to get this off the ground. Long-term, it may offer you the most freedom in pricing your items, though there will be yearly costs associated and you are responsible for all the admin and logistics.
Build on Your Foundation
If you were a working artist before the pandemic, you’re still a working artist now. The venues may have changed, but people’s love and appreciation for your work have not.
Go back to your roots. What kind of art sales did you make over the last year? Where did buyers discover your art? How did you price the work for sale at that time?
Each of these questions will need a new answer as you make the digital transition, but you can work from this foundation to pivot from galleries and festivals into online sales.
Now your buyers will encounter almost all of your art online. Think of it this way: it could open up a whole new niche of buyers for you who would not have found your booth at a festival half a world away.
Getting spotted on social media is a complicated game of algorithms, recommendations, and pure luck. You may want to consider working with a marketing consultant to find out how to get your work directly in front of potential buyers, maybe even through paid ads.
Alternatively, there are some great (and free!) social media marketing courses out there for small businesses and entrepreneurs.
The cost of prints – especially prints that are priced affordably – has made great art more accessible to the average person buying online. You can sell one original for $250. Or you can sell five prints for $100 a piece that can be printed on-demand.
Letting more people get a slice of the pie is beneficial in both directions. Online, price your work to sell to a wider audience.
Benefits of Selling Art Online
One of the greatest benefits of selling art online is the freedom to work with a partner to adapt your art to a new medium. With in-person sales, you may have concentrated on getting originals into the hands of your buyers. Now you have wider retail options.
Online, you can choose different types of prints (canvas, metal, acrylic), poster options, or even fabric accessories to host your art. When working with a partner who can produce and ship these items for you, you not only have more options, but you can sell a higher quantity of one piece of work in these new mediums.
Turning your art into a retail commodity may be a new concept for you. But in a time where it’s difficult to count on traditional, in-person sales models, innovating is the only answer.
Why ArtisanHD Is the Right Partner to Sell Art Online
ArtisanHD has years of industry experience helping artists expand their selling options online. In uncertain times, we can use this experience to assist artists in pivoting to a mostly digital sales model.
High-quality products remain valuable even as there is a shift in the way people consume art. That’s why we take an Artisan approach to the details and quality of your artwork. We are driven to create an excellent product just the way you are.
We assist by creating a quality product for you to showcase on your website and social media. We provide white-label service to ship art to your customers. Our time-tested shipping and wrapping process means fewer returns due to damage.
ArtisanHD is committed to keeping art alive and in the hands of buyers. We’re ready to partner with artists during this uncertain time to help sell art online and provide excellent printing, packaging, and shipping of your work.
What can we provide as your printing partner? Reach out today to discuss by calling 877-948-0009 or e-mail us!