Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Sell Fine Art Online - Part 1: Online Venue

Sell Fine Art Online - Primary Arrangement by Quang Ho
Whether you're an artist or a gallery, selling your artwork online is essential to succeed in the art world. Even if the final transaction occurs in person, so many leads and sells are generated online. A large number of art collectors choose to browse artwork online before stepping foot into a gallery, and in many cases, they complete the entire transaction online.

There are wide variety of things to consider when selling fine art online:
  • Online Venue - "Stand Alone" Business Website or a Community Website (eBay, Amazon, ect?
  • Domain Name
  • Website Hosting
  • Customization & Templates
  • Content Management System
  • E-Commerce Integration
  • Image Capture
  • Online Marketing
  • Search Engine Optimized - SEO
  • Blogging
  • Google Adwords?
  • Social Networking
One of the first things to decide when selling fine art online is selecting an Online Venue. In this case, the question is whether you plan on selling the artwork through a custom-built website with a domain name you've chosen or some kind of a community based website like FineArtWorld.com eBay, Amazon, or Craigslist.

Stand Alone Websites ( www.yourname.com )
A stand-alone website gives the artist or gallery their own private venue for marketing and selling artwork.

The major advantages:
  1. Customization - Stand-alone websites generally are not tied to a pre-built system which makes the code more flexible — which makes it easier to customize and tailor to your own personal preferences. This also makes it easier to brand your website.
  2. Less Internal Competition - There is less competition because a stand-alone website is all about you. Community websites normally have hundreds or thousands of artists and galleries which means more competition.
The major disadvantages:
  1. Expensive - While stand-alone websites are more custom, that customization normally comes at a higher price than community sites.
  2. Less Exposure - A stand-alone website can be a lonely website. Even though competition can be bad, it can also be good. Art collectors like to browse fine art from a wide variety of artists and galleries. Community websites provide that and normally receive higher rankings in search engines because of their numbers. Getting found can add to the overall cost of your stand-alone website.

Community Websites ( FineArtWorld.com, Amazon, eBay, Craigslist, ect )
Community websites provide the power of numbers and lower costs.

The Major Advantages:
  1. More Exposure with Little Effort - A Community Websites with hundreds or thousands of artists and galleries normally receive more attention from collectors and search engines. Simply having your artwork on a community website may give you leads with no real effort.
  2. Lower Costs - Community websites normally come at little or no cost. The website is able to generate income from a larger number of clients at lower prices without sacrificing profit. Community Site members reap the resources and lower costs of a community website.
The Major Disadvantages:
  1.  Competition - As mentioned above, being a part of a Community Website means that you will have to compete with other artists and galleries.
  2. Less Customization and Flexibility - Community Websites are normally setup with pre-built templates that aren't easy to customize.

Stand-alone websites and community websites have their advantages and disadvantages. While choosing your online venue may be difficult, there's no reason you can't have both. Fine Art World provides artists and galleries with both Community Websites and Independent Websites (Stand-Alone Websites). Learn more about fine art websites.

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