Old and new ways to sell art

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Francesco_ wrote
on 23 Jul 2014 2:13 PM

Hi everybody, I'm an MSc student and I'm currently writing my dissertation about the role of the internet in the art industry. I want to investigate the distribution channels available for artists nowadays and what artists actually need.  

What kind of service might interest you the most?

A) An online gallery where is possible to show and to sell your artworks. This hypothetical gallery hosts till 20 artists with styles similar to yours, providing as well a dedicated biography of your creations. The gallery asks a commission of 15% for each piece of art sold.

B) A company which manages all the sales of your paintings through big, well-established marketplaces such as Etsy, Ebay, Fine Art America etc. The hypothetical company would create your shop within the marketplace, updating the inventory and manage the relationships with buyers. The company asks a fee of 5% for each piece of art sold (that obviously should be added to the commission applied by the marketplace).

C) A company which creates a tailored website for you (price $2.000) and provides content management services (e.g. uploading new pieces of art) for $100 per year.

 

Please give a grade at each service from 1 (not interested) to 10 (very interested):

For example:

A) 5

B) 6

C) 7

 

If you think at other online-based services which might help artists in selling their works, please feel free to share your thoughts.         

 

Thanks...

 

 

Francesco

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Kevin__ wrote
on 23 Jul 2014 5:27 PM
I would say:

A) 8
B) 6
C) 8

The most important thing for me is to find a good way to make my paintings highly visible to buyers through a dedicated platform, like a personal website...

Kevin
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on 23 Jul 2014 8:27 PM

Francesco—

I think you have this backwards.

You are asking, "What type of service would interest you most". You should be asking, "With what types of marketing services for artwork  have you had experience—including Internet marketing services?" "With which of these services have you had the most success?"  "Are you selling original art or prints?" "What is the price range, including shipping, of your sales?" "Do you consider yourself a professional artist?"

You are dealing with methods of selling something that is a luxury item. It's appeal is visual. I believe there is a price ceiling —at top price range—on selling a product of this type without the buyer being able to see the actual item. This is the sort of thing that needs to be investigated.

As it is, you are asking, "Would you like a pie in the sky?"

Paul Sullivan

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Francesco_ wrote
on 25 Jul 2014 1:51 PM

Thanks Paul for your post,

Following your advice, I'd like to ask:

With what types of online marketing services for artwork  have you had experience? Which of these services have you had the most success?

The questions are directed to everyone who consider himself a visual artist...

 

Francesco

 


 

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on 25 Jul 2014 7:45 PM

Francesco—

You are getting closer.

You should be comparing the Internet to other ways of selling art. Also, you should be finding information on what price ranges actually sell on the web. There is a real question if the Internet is of any value for marketing higher priced artwork. Artwork is a luxury item. It is a visual item. A buyer would have to be out of his mind to purchase a really expensive piece of artwork online having never seen the original.

I have had a website for years and have seen limited success in some price ranges.

You sound as if you are interested in scouting out the art market to set up some method for artists to exhibit their work online. If so a few guys have beat you to it. The Internet has been around for over 25 years. If a website is charging artists for showing their work online, the guy making money is the site owner. Art doesn't move that fast.

Paul

 

 

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Francesco_ wrote
on 26 Jul 2014 6:22 AM

Thanks Paul,

Your suggestion about price range and effectiveness of online marketing is very interesting. It makes sense to me that high priced pieces of art are difficulty salable using (only) online channels.

This partially explains the success of marketplaces such as Etsy or Ebay where the average prices of the items is quite low.

My aim is to compare online art galleries to established marketplaces (e.g. Etsy, Ebay etc.). Do online galleries add a value that artists really appreciate nowadays (and hence artists are ready to pay something for that)? I'd like to hear some experience about this question...

I'm interested to this topic because, as I said previously, I'm writing a dissertation about that, but in the future I do not exclude to be involved personally in this industry...

Francesco

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