Earning an income as an artist may seem difficult, but the internet opens up countless new opportunities to make money doing what you love. In today’s digital age, you don’t need big galleries or agents to build a successful art business. You can directly connect with collectors and sell your original artwork all over the world.
This guide will walk you through the big picture of how to leverage online platforms to start making money from your creative passion. Follow these steps to turn your artwork into a thriving business.
The Big Picture: Finding Money with Art Online
For artists, the internet levels the playing field. You no longer have to compete for wall space or rely solely on local buyers. Art enthusiasts everywhere can discover and purchase your work with just a click. This is the objective of this article “Finding Money With Art”
Online art sales are now a multi-billion dollar industry, and the market only continues to grow. A 2019 Hiscox Online Art Trade Report found that the value of overall online art sales increased by 9.8% from 2018 to 2019. As an artist, you have the opportunity to claim your share of sales.
Selling online opens you up to a global customer base all through your computer. With some effort and persistence, you can build a brand and consistent income stream doing what you love.
How Online Art Sales Work
Art collectors increasingly look to the internet as their go-to place for discovering new talent and purchasing artwork. Online art platforms allow them to browse thousands of works by style, medium, price or other keywords. It’s an art-lover’s dream come true.
As an artist, online venues give you direct access to this enthusiastic buyer base. You’ll want to leverage both art-focused marketplaces as well as your own website and social media presence.
Here are some of the top ways to get your art in front of hungry art buyers online:
- Online art marketplaces – Sites like Etsy, FineArtAmerica and Artsy allow you to set up your own shop and list artwork for sale through your profile. These make selling fast and easy.
- Your artist website – A dedicated site to showcase your portfolio and purchase options captures buyers who enjoy browsing.
- Social media – Engaging with art fans on Instagram, Facebook, and other visual platforms helps drive traffic and sales.
- Art fairs/festivals – Digital versions of art fairs allow you to open a virtual booth to reach global buyers.
- Print-on-demand – Services like Redbubble let you sell prints, apparel, and more with your designs without any upfront costs.
- Galleries – Many traditional galleries now also offer online purchasing and expand your exposure.
The money you earn from online art sales varies depending on the platform and type of work. On your own website, you may sell higher priced originals and keep the majority of profits. Print-on-demand sites pay smaller royalties per each item sold. Marketplace commissions range from 5-30%.
How to Start Selling Your Art Online
Have a portfolio ready? Now it’s time to begin setting up your online art shop! Follow these steps to start bringing in sales:
Choose your online platforms Do some research to decide which online art marketplaces best fit your business needs. Factor in fees, audience, tools for sellers, and more.
Great options to consider include:
- Etsy – Best for handmade and vintage work
- FineArtAmerica – Good for prints and canvases
- Artsy – Leans towards gallery-represented artists
- DailyPaintworks – Made for daily painting artists
- Artfinder – Popular for art prints and originals
Set up your profiles Take the time to properly set up your seller profiles on your chosen platforms. Include detailed descriptions, quality photos, pricing, details on prints, shipping policies, and any other relevant info to make the buying process smooth.
Build your artist website Having your own professional website allows you to control your branding, showcase your full body of work, and connect directly with collectors. Use intuitive DIY platforms like Wix or Squarespace to create a stunning site in no time.
Engage on social media Promote your art profiles and website by actively posting on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, and other visual social platforms. Share your creative process, finished artwork, news, and more to start building an audience.
Participate in online art fairs Digital art fairs like Artsy’s OVR provide a unique opportunity to exhibit your work in an online booth that buyers can browse from anywhere. Take advantage of these to grow your global collector base.
Consider print-on-demand Print-on-demand sites like Redbubble, FineArtAmerica, and Society6 make it easy to sell prints and products with your designs. Upload your images and choose products you’d like your art to appear on.
Price your art competitively Research prices for comparable work so you can competitively price your art. Keep in mind the platform fees so you still make a profit from each sale after commissions.
Market yourself Spread the word about your art by networking with fellow artists, collaborating, engaging your mailing list, and any other creative marketing tactics. Self-promotion will help drive collectors to your online presence.
5 Tips for Finding Money More Art Online
Selling your artwork online takes consistent effort, but you will reap the rewards for your hard work. Here are some top tips for increasing your online art sales:
- Refresh your inventory frequently – Add new pieces often to give buyers reasons to revisit your shop.
- Offer limited editions – Creating a sense of exclusivity and urgency helps drive sales.
- Promote sales/offers – Discounts and specials will get art collectors to pull the trigger on purchases.
- Diversify your products – Sell originals, prints, apparel, stationery, housewares, etc. to appeal to more customers.
- Engage with buyers – Reply promptly, offer payment plans, and provide excellent service to keep them coming back.
Patience and persistence are key – continue enhancing your online presence and sales will build over time. With dedication to learning best practices for selling art on the internet, you can succeed in making art your full-time career and passion.
The digital art world is wide open with possibilities. Now is the perfect time to start leveraging it to make money from your creative talents. Follow this guide to begin selling your art online today!