Each and every day, there is a countless number of artists struggling to make a steady flow of income from their online sales – musicians, painters and craftsmen are constantly putting an effort to sell what they’ve created. This is a constant issue for both full time artists and those who view their craft as a hobby.
One of the biggest downsides to art school is the fact that they don’t tell their students that they will be all on their own once they’ve finished their studies. Nobody tells art students that if they want to make money off their work, they will have to have an entrepreneurial mindset as well.
If you don’t understand that you are a businessman and an artist, you will be unable to get your goods into the hands of potential customers, and you won’t get the money you deserve for them. Since the modern art market is quite crowded, you, as an artist, must deliver quality pieces and learn how to market them to the best of your abilities.
I’m sorry to burst your bubble, but your art pieces are products as well and that’s why you must learn how to sell them. Here are the four most essential steps for selling art online.
Promote and sell your art on social networks
The easiest way to get your art out there is to focus on social media for both selling and marketing. Let’s look at how you can start selling on the most popular social networks out there.
Wondering why should you set up your art store on Facebook? Simply because of one fact – Facebook is the most popular social network and it has over 1.5 billion active users each month. These are all potential customers that might be interested in your art. Well, not all of them, but even tiny portion would give you the income you wanted. The easiest way to do this is to use an e-commerce app that can build your store almost automatically.
First, you will have to create a Facebook page for your store and, once you’ve done that, simply go to “your store” button and set it up. Once you’ve done this, people will be able to purchase products directly from your Facebook page.
The next step is to build your audience. You can do this by inviting friends to like your page, sharing or joining groups with art lovers where you can engage potential clients and promote your store. You can also pay to advertise your page and get more likes from targeted people.
Twitter buy button
The recent integration of the Twitter “buy button” has made it possible to drive organic conversions on the second largest social network. The button is included next to your each Tweet and it’s quite easy for users to click and buy a product they are interested in. However, you will have to build a base of followers to whom you can offer your products. Start following relevant people and, over time, they will follow you back.
Make sure that you include photos in your Tweets so that people can know what you are offering. Add tags and a short caption to describe your art and spark interest in your audience. Bear in mind that people might only check out, or buy your art after they’ve seen it a couple of times somewhere, and that’s why being memorable is very important.
Set up a profile on Etsy
This is an excellent platform for all kinds of creative artists, especially those skilled in creating jewelry, clothes and other handmade items. The first thing to know about Etsy is that you can change your initial user name only once you’ve opened a shop. So, make sure that you use an adequate name that represents your brand, as it will stay that way forever. After you’ve done this, brand your profile with a photo, an avatar, a listing photo and a banner, all of which go well together. You should also create unique labels for your products, so that you can spread brand awareness offline as well.
Choose the best photos possible, as Etsy limits you to a maximum of 5 photos. When it comes to Etsy, it’s all about making a great first impression. Don’t post all of your art at once but rather post a couple of them each day. This will create a bit of a buzz and your products will appear much higher in searches.
Make your potential buyers feel pleasant, answer to all customer questions, don’t lie about shipping time and truly describe your products. Bear in mind that you probably won’t start selling your art straight away. It’s a process that might take a while, so be patient and improve your shop constantly.
Set up a profile on Amazon
Amazon is the largest website for retail stores. Most people think they are buying products from Amazon, however almost 35 % of the products on Amazon are offered by a third party. Registering on Amazon is quite easy. Simply scroll down to the bottom of the page and press the “sell on Amazon” button.
Choose the “sell as a professional” option and, with a few more tweaks, you are ready to go. Amazon is really good for selling unique and brand new art since the professional seller option gives you the ability to create listings for goods which aren’t currently sold on the site.
Another reason why you should choose the professional seller option is the fact that, if you want to be recognized as a unique label, you will have to register your brand, so that Amazon can offer its protection.
The best way to go is to sell with fulfillment by Amazon. This option requires you to send all of your art to Amazon and they will ship pieces when they are sold, they will also deal with refunds, returns and handle customer service. Because of the fact that Amazon is abundant with all kinds of products, including art, it can be very hard to get noticed in the crowd. This is why you should try and describe your products as best as you can, upload only the best photos and learn how to reprice products so that you can maximize sales and get the most out of each sale.
Build a website of your own
No matter how good all these stores or social networks may be, you still need to create a website that represents you as an artist. A website of your own will give you credibility as an artist, and on it, you can explain your art and its meaning even deeper. Furthermore, you can establish better communication with your clients, build a base of followers and brand your work even better. Once of the best platforms you can use to set up a simple Website is WordPress.
You simply go to the official WordPress site and follow the instructions that will make the whole thing more of a game rather than a serious process. Besides the fact that it’s easy to create a simple site, later on, when you need more, you can easily upgrade it to look more awesome and have more features. With your own site, you will create your own domain name that will help you build brand awareness, and since WordPress is a search engine friendly platform, people will find it easier to search for your art online.
These are the essentials for selling art online. After a while, you should look to enhance your business skills and enhance your marketing skills, finding ways to stay competitive, improving your customer service, etc. Bear in mind that it will take some time before you actually make any sales, so be patient and work on improving all of your stores and profiles while waiting for results.