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Old 01-28-2018, 11:33 PM
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Selling art- Website to handle sales?

Hello all,

I'm wanting to get a website set up for a portfolio this year. Obviously I want to have the capacity to make salesof available pieces. Is it best to have your site link to something external like ebay or etsy to handle sales transactions or have it handled directly from your site through paypal? Do any of the build it yourself websites have good options for sales directly through the site? I'm not a big fan of weebly but does anyone have experience with wix or imcreator or something else?

Thanks all!
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Old 01-29-2018, 04:28 AM
Harold Roth Harold Roth is online now
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Re: Selling art- Website to handle sales?

I chose Shopify. It allows more payment options.
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Old 01-29-2018, 05:12 AM
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freakstyle freakstyle is offline
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Re: Selling art- Website to handle sales?

I'm using woocommerce myself. It's open source (works with a wordpress website) and offers a bunch of payment and shipping options. It even offers the Dutch "Ideal"-payment option, although I still have to install this, because "Ideal" itself doesn't have the easiest installer.

What I like about woocommerce over etsy/ebay etc, is that you can fully customize the layout of your shop, so that it fits seemlessly within your website. Another nice feature is that you're able to create shipping classes, with different options, and assign a class to each product.
It's definitely easier in use than BigCartel, for instance.

The downside is that you have to work with wordpress. Creating a website isn't that difficult (there are plugins, like Elementor, that will give you a fully visual page builder; no code required), but you do have to spend a day or so to learn the tools. Still, there are loads of free templates to use.
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Old 01-29-2018, 12:45 PM
webart webart is offline
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Re: Selling art- Website to handle sales?

If anyone wants an easy to follow guide for setting up a wordpress site check out www.easyhtmlcode.com/wordpress

Anyway an advantage of selling your art through an external site like etsy is that they are already getting lots of traffic so your art has a better chance of getting found on the internet than it would through your own website
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Old 01-30-2018, 07:28 AM
Harold Roth Harold Roth is online now
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Re: Selling art- Website to handle sales?

Quote:
Originally Posted by webart
Anyway an advantage of selling your art through an external site like etsy is that they are already getting lots of traffic so your art has a better chance of getting found on the internet than it would through your own website

Not in my experience. I sell literally ten times as much through my own art site as I do through Etsy. Even when I have promoted my site and my Etsy shop equally, most people who buy do it through my site. I've never sold a painting through Etsy, just prints, so my experience is also that Etsy can be good for prints but not so much for paintings. I know there are some people who have done well with paintings on there in the past, but it seems like it has been chaotic recently.
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Old 01-31-2018, 11:25 PM
contumacious contumacious is offline
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Re: Selling art- Website to handle sales?

So far, 100% of my sales are through galleries, but my website has contributed to sales at those galleries. It also makes for an easy online portfolio for when I want to show my work to a new gallery somewhere that is not within my normal traveling area.

I did set up a payment portal on my website but I have not had a single sale on the site since I built it several years ago. There are quite a few visitors to the site, but no sales. I do have some art on there that is not in any gallery presently. If the piece is in a gallery I tell the customers on the item page that they can buy it on my website if they wish, with the understanding that if it has sold at the gallery before I am able to tell them it was sold on my website, I will have to let the gallery have the sale and cancel the website sale. That might put people off somewhat.
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Old 02-01-2018, 07:50 AM
Harold Roth Harold Roth is online now
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Re: Selling art- Website to handle sales?

If you sell it through your site, do you subtract the gallery's cut? I am not in any gallery, but I have felt pretty weird about that issue.
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Old 02-05-2018, 11:14 AM
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Re: Selling art- Website to handle sales?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Harold Roth
If you sell it through your site, do you subtract the gallery's cut? I am not in any gallery, but I have felt pretty weird about that issue.

I heard this issue of selling at the price you would sell at a gallery, even though you are not in a gallery many years ago, and also feel weird about it. It seems to me to be a kind of "monopoly" where another business (the gallery) is dictating how much you can sell your work for, which to me is a way that many beginning artists are shot down because they over-price their work based on a future possibility. How many people consider themselves "artists" and how many are actually in galleries? I have been endeavoring to bring my costs down as low as possible, even changing the materials I use, so that my art is available to all art lovers, not just the "rich." However, if I lower my costs in such a way, I really do not want to have to add more costs, to split the profit with a phantom gallery.

So in the end, you are raising your price on the off chance that you may get into a gallery, and so you tack on 50% more, which in turn makes your work harder to sell because it is more expensive. Sometimes people who want your work must buy it on layaway, or "time." You want to encourage people to follow you and buy more work eventually-- become a regular customer. How will this happen if you tack on 50% or even 75% in some cases?
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Old 02-05-2018, 12:29 PM
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JDWooldridge JDWooldridge is offline
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Re: Selling art- Website to handle sales?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Harold Roth
If you sell it through your site, do you subtract the gallery's cut? I am not in any gallery, but I have felt pretty weird about that issue.

Absolutely not! But, I will never sell direct any pieces which are currently in the inventory of any gallery which represents me. Nor will I go and take a piece from a gallery because someone has contacted me directly. I will ALWAYS refer them to my gallery and let the gallery make the sale even though I will lose 35-40% of the potential profit from doing so. I have actually had customers suggest I do that so I could share some of that with them in the form of a discount! Integrity in the gallery relationship is extremely important for both parties to maintain.
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Old 02-05-2018, 05:13 PM
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Re: Selling art- Website to handle sales?

Quote:
Originally Posted by JDWooldridge
Absolutely not! But, I will never sell direct any pieces which are currently in the inventory of any gallery which represents me. Nor will I go and take a piece from a gallery because someone has contacted me directly. I will ALWAYS refer them to my gallery and let the gallery make the sale even though I will lose 35-40% of the potential profit from doing so. I have actually had customers suggest I do that so I could share some of that with them in the form of a discount! Integrity in the gallery relationship is extremely important for both parties to maintain.

However, OP said he/she was not in any gallery. If selling online, and you are not represented by a gallery, do not just "add" the 50% or whatever cut the gallery takes, in the off chance that later you will be represented by a gallery.

I know that being in a gallery is a goal of many artists, but in a very real sense, they cause a lot of interference and friction in your art life-- for instance possible up to forcing you to paint what you really do not want to paint and keeping you from artistically growing. I personally only contact galleries for one-offs. It becomes too much like a job otherwise. You should study the pros and cons yourself and then make a well-reasoned decision.

As for your first question: it looks like (square) square space has some kind of a sales website maker.
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Last edited by Use Her Name : 02-05-2018 at 05:16 PM.
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Old 02-05-2018, 05:39 PM
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Re: Selling art- Website to handle sales?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Use Her Name
However, OP said he/she was not in any gallery. If selling online, and you are not represented by a gallery, do not just "add" the 50% or whatever cut the gallery takes, in the off chance that later you will be represented by a gallery.

That was not my interpretation of what Harold was asking about. I interpreted it actually with two possible intentions: if you ARE in a gallery and you sell a piece online do you either a) give the gallery their cut if it was being shown in the gallery or b) take the gallery commission off of the price. By either of those two interpretations, my answer is no.
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Old 02-05-2018, 07:26 PM
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Re: Selling art- Website to handle sales?

You do what your contract states unless you are a certain New York real estate mogul with orange skin. In that case, you do whatever makes you happy.
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Old 02-27-2018, 06:47 PM
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Re: Selling art- Website to handle sales?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Use Her Name
You do what your contract states unless you are a certain New York real estate mogul with orange skin. In that case, you do whatever makes you happy.
Oh, so this is the type of thing you were referencing in the other thread about 'views'....

Last edited by SowegaPainter : 02-27-2018 at 07:00 PM.
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Old 03-13-2018, 12:42 AM
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eylinwatercolor eylinwatercolor is offline
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Re: Selling art- Website to handle sales?

I use squares space for my website and loving it so far.
It's easy to set up (with some time) and selling through square space is rather simple.
I even do my commission transaction there (by creating a "product" for commission client)
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Old 03-13-2018, 10:17 AM
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Re: Selling art- Website to handle sales?

I use Fine Art Studio Online (FASO). It costs $28/month, but I think it is worth it. It integrates with PayPal allowing me to sell works in my studio directly. If I mark a painting as at a gallery, it say to contact the gallery with their contact info.
If I were to switch to another platform, I would try Shopify because they are integrated with Pinterest so you can offer "buyable" pins. (Pinterest refers the most visitors to my website, 800+/mo.) I think, but don't know for certain, that Shopify integrates slideshows and videos, too.
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