In answer to a Facebook request for information re "art websites" and their quest to convince us we can't survive without them, I submitted the following which was immediately BANNED by Facebook as it did not meet its "community standards...." Basically, I stated that art websites which ask for a fee to display your artwork are not what they set themselves up to be anymore than pay-to-play galleries were prior to the internet. On my site you are all free to take in or reject my presentations without a hassle. Enjoy!
The question asked was the following:
Dear fellow artists, has anyone found a website theme that works well for art sales? I just realized my websites are doing nothing for me, and it's time for a "Spring cleaning."
One response presented was the following:
I've had a site on FASO for years ... no sales. But I didn't do all their suggestions. They give you a marketing plan to make that a step by step but with all the other things in my life, I still got overwhelmed with everything there is to do and figure out with online tech and marketing. That said I like that they tell you how and have good support team. They do weekly webinars and so you have access to the info in the library if you miss them or want to watch the old ones. Thay have a prints on demand thing too. And then they also offer their service of Art Sales Optimization if you decide NOT to do it yourself. I'm considering that but that service is $1000 so .... still thinking about that wondering if I should try myself using their tutorials first or just save time and hassle and pay them to do it. Everything is upfront with them. No hidden fees like HostGator. I also have 2 sites on Hostgator that are related to other things but mention my art. I recently decided to get rid of them but found out they just auto-renewed at high prices (with expensive add-ons) and no refunds so instead, for now, I'm keeping them, redoing them and planning the end of them when they come due again. Good luck with your search. Keep us posted.
I responded with the following which was immediately curbed from being presented (by Facebook) as it is deemed to be (by Facebook) counter to their "community standards" (!!!) Undeterred, I present these thoughts on MY website blog. Take from it what you will. Cheers. -
Pay-to-play websites... my thoughts...
Thank you for this information which is a reflection of many other "helpful" (?) pay-to-play sites. The old adage is true: Nothing is free. Even then, no "service" (?) can guarantee sales, and most cannot actualize what is totally dependent on the attraction between an artwork and a viewer. NOTHING else matters in the promotion and sale of artworks - no matter what these sites promise or imply to promise.
$1000? You can do a lot more for that amount of money than waste it on beautiful sites which do NOT (cannot) promote your name as the top byline on their pages since they have thousands of others to "satisfy" and the purpose of their site is not to promote your work but to attract visitors to their site. (Something to ponder).
I continue to recommend a Wix, Weebly or Wordpress type of personal site in which, when people type your name, they reach YOUR site and not someone else's. Also when your site name (www.yourname.com) pops up on Google search, it will MOST probably be on the first search page because few if any people have your same name.
Take the time to read an old-fashioned promo and ad book from the old ad-greats from the early 20th century and you will get a million times further in your quest to sell artwork than by being a nobody in the $1000 nobody world of the mega art-pay-to-play sites.
The artworld market is NOT for wimps. Take charge of your marketing. Spend the time to do it slowly and well. You're not the only one out there trying to make a living. And even then, about 3% of drawers and painters "make it". In the beginning stick to your neighbourhood and as the word gets out, spread "the news". It is more likely you will make more sales in your own environment than in the world's open-door policy of oblivion. Never forget... It is not we who determine whether we become a "name-brand". That is the role of those who see our artwork and promote us by word of mouth, and buy our work, and proudly display it. Without an eager audience, we go nowhere. THEY are more important to our success in the marketplace than we are.
That's it. My 2 cents after 54 years of success in an extremely difficult marketplace.
Last note: The digital world is not meant to be generous to its trusting clients any more than physical galleries will be. But, if we are astute and are "in it" for the long haul, it can be a helluva ride and as long as we stay positive and creative, there is always a chance someone "out there" will catch our vibe. 😊 Cheers!
Bernard Poulin. . . I paint, I draw, I write