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View Full Version : Anyone use Artstorefronts?


huckaday
05-02-2015, 04:34 PM
I just posted this on my facebook profile and thought the best people to ask would be you guys! Here is my post:

I was just looking at Art Storefronts, super interesting concept. Basically you pay a yearly fee for the website system and it is connected with a local print shop that is screened to be of high quality...a customer can then view your art in various formats and order it right from the site to their own specifications, (size, canvas, paper etc, ...whatever they want)....the order goes directly to the printer who will print to the buyers specifications and ship it straight to them...they keep their cut to pay for shipping/printing etc and the markup goes directly to you! I think it is a great system because the only upfront fees you have are the yearly fee, scanning costs (if needed) and whatever your costs are to make the image to start with...(great for photography too). If you were to get prints made it is a guessing game as to how many you will sell, what size people want etc and then you have to deal with shipping etc. Anyone have any experience using Art Storefronts?

http://www.artstorefronts.com/home_art


I hope some of you guys can give me some insight to this....being a bit of a hermit this would be a great thing for me...the more hands off the better for me! lol :) (people are scary-making! lol)

Delofasht
05-02-2015, 06:11 PM
Like all digital internet sites and concepts like these the ultimate problem is that you have to have a very large following and be directing potential buyers there to get it, then rely on them picking many options and working to buy something they like. Sure if they like it enough I could see them going for it, but many sales will be lost just because of the inconvenience of having to make choices. People often just prefer to have set established prices attached to a minimal number of choices, prints are very impulsive buys. (From my experience with print sales, which though while limited I can count the number of digital online sales I have made on one hand)

If you are paying a yearly fee, I feel like they should be promoting your work for that in addition to the services they are providing, which simply isn't a very strong model for them. It requires paying someone nearly daily to be filtering the works and directing people who go there to buy a specific kind of artwork they are going to be interested in which might mean they will miss other works they might find interesting. I honestly couldn't say whether the model can work or not, it very well could and I might just be jaded with the internet as a way to sell prints. I think for the investment of money you could just run a Square Website instead, and have the full benefits of a good looking gallery, a register, tracking, sales controls, inventory controls, and so on.

Hope my opinion (that's all this is) helps you.

Charlie's Mum
05-03-2015, 08:49 AM
Other places do the work for you and only take their cut - no yearly fee!
RedBubble is one such site - where artists meet and can show/share work.

huckaday
05-03-2015, 12:43 PM
I will have to check out red bubble! Anyone know of any others?

This service wasn't meant to promote your work. It's for printing per order rather than guessing and paying for the possibility of a sale...which is what I liked. I have no idea what will sell and what won't. ..or what size or format the customer will want. It saves me from having to come up with the money up front (other than the fee) to purchase prints I may not sell.

You have the option of them making a website for you...with your own domain name etc...or adding it to your existing website...which is what I would like to do...I want to maintain my own site. It isn't mixed in with other people's work at all...it is just a system to help your customers purchase a print.

IM not 100% sold on it yet and am going to have a chat with the print shop in my area that provides the service first to see quality of work, the process etc.

What I do like is how they have a wall view, so people can see what it would look like at each size. That's pretty cool.

I will definitely check out other free services and see what they offer in comparison. I like the idea of not having to deal with the whole transactions with money and shipping etc! (and the potential of losing money on prints that don't sell....not as bad for paper but for canvas it can add up!)

Davkin
05-03-2015, 02:52 PM
This is generally referred to as a POD or "Print on Demand" service. The biggest one is Fine Art America www.fineartamerica.com (http://www.fineartamerica.com) . Membership is free there up to 25 images. If you pay the $30 annual fee you get to host an unlimited number of images and you also get a website with a unique domain, though it's not very customizable. That is where my website is hosted for now. BTW, the link to your website appears to be dead.

LavenderFrost
05-04-2015, 12:05 PM
I hope some of you guys can give me some insight to this....being a bit of a hermit this would be a great thing for me...the more hands off the better for me! lol :) (people are scary-making! lol)

I can relate to that!

I'm not sure if I understand how this site works. Do they take care of shipping as well? Fine Art America is pretty simple, just upload your images and set your prices. They do the printing and shipping.

Rick G
05-04-2015, 01:20 PM
I can add a little insight into ArtStorefronts from the perspective of a small giclee printing business operator. I've spoken with them and have been given a tour of the web package that they're marketing. ArtStorefronts doesn't directly offer printing services. Rather they've developed a subscription web package that local print shops can use to offer printing on demand for their clients. Art Storefronts host the web site in the background for the printer and try to link them up with artists and photographers in their area who will also subscribe to get their own website that is linked seamlessly to the printer's so that when an order is placed, the printer gets it and fulfills the request.

In concept, I like the idea because it takes care of what I see as the main defect in other Print On Demand sites: no direct connection between artist and printer. To work well and produce prints that you'll be proud to say accurately represent your artwork, you need to be able to meet with the printer. You'll want to discuss the various materials that your work can be printed on, see proofs and work with the printer to make any adjustments necessary to satisfy your eye relative to color and value in the print. If you aren't capable of photographing your work well, or don't have the tools necessary to do it at a high enough resolution to make large prints, the giclee printer can do that for you.

Part of ArtStorefronts' pitch to me was that in order to help artists make the commitment, the printer sometimes agrees to pay for the artist's annual fee with the placement of a minimum order. If you're interested in pursuing this, you may want to contact ArtStorefronts and ask if there is a printer in your area that you could visit with prior to subscribing.

Ultimately, I passed on signing up with them. I think their product is a good one, but I also think that there's a missing piece that I'm not sure how to overcome: how to get enough traffic to the website so that both artist and printer are happy. I'm still thinking about that and, if I can find the right answer, I may take the plunge at some point in the future.

TimmoB
01-06-2016, 10:53 AM
Hi Hackaday,

Just wondered what you decide about Art Storefronts, did you go with them?

TommieLu
01-25-2016, 05:37 PM
Would be interested in knowing if anyone has signed with/used art Storefronts?

RandyHuffordArt
05-10-2016, 03:08 PM
Hi I have been using Art Store Fronts since October of last year. My first 2 months of being live I sold more art on the iNet than the last 15 years of smugmug and custom web pages. The awesome thing about Art Store Fronts is their dedication to education. The reason i have been a success with Art Store Fronts is because I read their articles and follow thru! check out my site which is a work in progress. randyhuffordart
I actually did a short video as a way of saying Thank You to Art Store Fronts. which on my youtube videos. Sorry it will not let me post url of video. But go to you tube and search for Randy Hufford Art than look at my video titled "Art Storefronts Testimony by Randy Hufford Art"

I cannot say enough good at what I have learned from Art Store Fronts.

Aloha
Randy Hufford Art.com
Maui, Hawaii:

jonathan keeton
10-25-2016, 01:09 PM
I've been using ArtStorefronts for over a year. Initially their support was very very shakey, and they clearly are set up mostly for print shops, and are attempting, with varying success, to also work for individual artists. Their interface is very slick, but it's critical to either follow their SEO guidelines or have someone help you that knows their stuff; otherwise no one will find you.
With their new plans, they charge 10% of all sales made through your website, which I find pretty disgusting.

csa7
03-06-2017, 05:04 PM
So Ive spoken to ArtStorefronts and they require the highest fees for an art online presence I have ever heard of, $500-$2500 one time fee plus $29 per month. Please can someone tell me what it is they do for this money? Why so much more than other online art sellers? Im looking an art seller but the high fees of this site make me very curious and not wanting to join it.

meganj
04-14-2017, 09:27 PM
I just had a walk through with Art Storefronts. I like what they do. The missing piece that they provide (as far as I can tell) is the marketing piece. Any company can host a website, this one seems to show you, step by step, how to market your website. The set-up fee is a one time thing.

ajcart
05-19-2018, 05:44 PM
Hi Everyone,
I just signed on with art storefronts and so far I'm really happy about it. I did a lot of research and thinking about this decision because it was definitely an investment, but I am already seeing how beneficial art storefronts will be to my art career. For starters, I sold an original painting for $2400 a few weeks after launching my site and following recommendations for how to send out emails to collectors and how to coordinate ads with collectors on Facebook. I firmly believe I wouldn't have sold the painting if it wasn't for art storefronts. I have several reasons for why I think art storefronts is a good investment if you are already an artist who has sold work/has some collectors OR if your work is really good but haven't sold yet:
1--They have many different templates to choose from for your website, and they all look extremely slick and professional. They have a variety of excellent tools such as an automatic pop-up that helps you collect email addresses of those checking out your site, a preview tool that allows the potential client to either see your piece in a pre-designed room, or to view it on your own wall at home! The sites have secure shopping carts and look super pro!
2--I feel like I am getting a BA in Marketing. The pod cast, blog, tutorials, etc. are helping me understand how to market myself, mostly with Facebook and Instagram. Let's face it, many of us artists are creatives who are good at making stuff, not at selling it. ASF understands this and passes on marketing advice with that in mind. Also, you will learn how to build your contacts, and how to write a variety of different emails so that you are keeping collectors in the loop. This information comes from ASF staff who have marketing degrees and are experienced, so you are getting advice from pros.
3--ASF is good for the artists who are in this for the long hall. I hope to be painting for a good 30 more years or so, so this big initial investment will certainly pay for itself over and over again if I follow the advice. I needed to take a risk and make an investment so I could sell more art, and this is what I chose to do so.
4--If you have a lot of originals and want to sell prints, ASF makes it super easy. They connect with various vetted out print shops around the country, so when someone orders a print from you, it comes right from the print shop. I just had one of my paintings printed on metal and received it yesterday. The colors and quality are amazing. Why not make money from the originals time and time again by selling prints? You can also sell limited prints if you wish.
5-You will learn about the importance of SEO (search engine optimization) so that your site pops up on google searches. I have had a website for over 10 years and never knew about this--no wonder I never sold a piece from my site!

One thing to mention is that it does take a lot of work to launch your site. There's a bit of a learning curve, but if you merely follow the tutorials they provide, you can get it all done. It can be frustrating at times, but if you just email their customer service team they get back to you within hours!

I am happy to answer any other questions or share more of my experience. I actually checked this forum before making my decision and noticed that a lot of the posts are old, so I hope my experience can help those of you thinking about joining ASF. Feel free to check out my website--you can contact me from there if you have more questions. :thumbsup:

Edit - please contact this poster via the private messaging service in WtCanvas - Charlie's Mum, Moderator

theBongolian
05-19-2018, 07:58 PM
It's great to see all the new members making their first and only post about how great Art storefronts. Really instills confidence.

fedetony
05-20-2018, 07:53 AM
It's great to see all the new members making their first and only post about how great Art storefronts. Really instills confidence.
:lol: ... yes... lets share all the advantages of a business first, then share our art.. oh wait, I am a marketing/sales agent in disguise as new member :D... Not to worry, you can also share your stick drawing here (if its made in Acrylics, else in the correct forum) and we can help you improve it ;), we are a community to share art and information :) .. and yes is for free :) .. enjoy!:cat:

For the readers:
I would take only experienced member artist advice!!!!!

cote coyote
08-07-2018, 03:39 PM
I am a fine art photographer and I have been looking at Artstorefronts as an option to market my prints. I have seen many positive reviews, but having read their response to one of the few negative reviews I could find, I think I will pass on their services. The fact that they are threatening legal action for a bad review makes me wonder if the number of good v.s. bad reviews isn't skewed by former clients being bullied into retracting less than glowing rewiews of their services on forums like this one.:eek:


https://www.trustpilot.com/review/artstorefronts.com?languages=en&stars=1

tmwilliams
08-07-2018, 05:51 PM
Struck me as odd too, Federico and Bongolian...

jonc50
08-08-2018, 01:28 AM
My first thought right off the bat also!

Zebreaux
10-17-2018, 10:56 AM
Hello everyone. New member, first post..... Various interests, reading past posts, working my way through Acrylics.....
From the shadows I am mumbling, "Yes, please pay attention to who it is saying the things you want to hear."