Having a website can seem like a lot of work and a lot of time that many artists do not want to take away from their painting.
Every artist today needs to have a website. The way artists sell their artwork is constantly changing. A website helps give an artist exposure to new customers. An artist is essentially running a small business, so they need to have a website like any other business owner in running the small business.
Here are some reasons why every artist today needs to have a website to promote their artwork.
1 – The Way Artist Make Money From Art Is Changing
The way an artist makes money from their artwork is changing. It used to be that an artist would put their painting in a gallery and then wait for the gallery to sell and market their paintings. Many artists are still making a living that way, but the truth is that many galleries worldwide are closing their doors because the way many people are buying art is also changing.
Take for example the Watters Gallery that had been in operation since 1964. They recently closed their doors for the last time in December 2018. Geoffrey Legge one of the owners of the gallery said:
With major online players getting into the art business and selling original art online, what Geoffrey Legge is saying is like it or not, the way people are buying art has also changed. No longer are galleries the only way that people can buy art. Now there are many choices out there for both the artist and the art buyer.
As the way people are buying art is changing, it also means that most artists can no longer just depend on an art gallery to sell their art for them while they stay home to paint. Instead, artists need to operate and think like a small business owner. This means they must operate as any small business which includes having a website.
2 – A Website Gives An Artist Exposure
A website will help to give an artist exposure. A website can be like an artist’s own online gallery. Even if you are trying to go the gallery route with your art, the easiest way to show the potential galleries about your artwork is to direct them to your website. So they can see your work online and then decided if they are interested in you and your artwork.
Having a website will also help to define you as an artist. Here are a few things you should do before doing your website:
- Invest in a Domain name – Invest in a domain name that has your name or name of the company or artistic name. This simple act of having a domain name with your name will help you look more professional than someone who does not have a domain name with their own name. I use GoDaddy as my hosting company and they have some very cheap domain names. You can click here to find out more about their domain names.
- Have a logo – A logo will help you, your art, and your website look more professional. There is free logo making software programs you can use for some ideas for your logo. Check out Tailormade or FreeLogoDesign to see if you like any designs their software comes up with for you.
3 – A Website Helps An Artist Look Professional
If you want to look like a professional artist the quickest and easiest way to do that is to do a professional-looking website. Today with the website programs that are out there, this is not only very possible but very easy to do. All you need are some basic computer skills.
If you want to have a simple website design program that is easy to learn you can try one of these programs:
- Weebly – I have a few websites on Weebly. Weebly’s website program is quite easy to learn, so you can get a website up and running quite quickly. Though you can point another domain name you have purchased elsewhere to Weebly if you are looking for ease in use, it is easier to buy your domain name directly from Weebly. Weebly should allow you to be able to get a website up and running quite quickly by using Weebly as your provider and helping you design the website. Weebly should have enough templates to give the look that you want for your site. You can find out more by clicking here.
- GoDaddy Website Builder – GoDaddy also has an excellent website builder that makes it easy for you to build your website. One of the things I love about GoDaddy is that you can always call them. They have tech support that works 24 hours and 7 days a week. I have spent a lot of time on the phone with their tech support, and they usually have been accommodating. So if you are a bit anxious about building a website, this is a great option as you can always get some phone support and help from GoDaddy. You can find out more about their website builder by clicking here.
If you are serious about blogging and want to have your website look a certain way, with the colors, font type, and other features, I would suggest that you consider learning WordPress.
WordPress now powers over 34% of all websites on the web; this amount increases every year. This means that many people are doing online tutorials about setting up a WordPress site, and many free plugins are available for WordPress. So if you want to learn WordPress, there is a ton of content out there to help you.
Though learning WordPress will take you some time and effort, but once you learn WordPress, then you are not limited in what your website can do. I use GoDaddy as my hosting company, and again one of the reasons is I like the access to be able to call their tech support at any time about my site. GoDaddy offers you two kinds of WordPress programs:
- WordPress – This is the regular WordPress. To use this, you will need to know about the technical aspects of your site, such as how to work a C panel, ensure your SSL is up-to-date, etc. All the technical backend kind of website stuff. For a while, I only had this as my WordPress and it worked great. But due to my own SSL concerns in trying to configure it correctly, I moved to the Managed WordPress program.
- Managed WordPress – Setting up a Managed WordPress website is much easier than just WordPress. GoDaddy has the Managed WordPress and they can help to give you some extra support and help you back up your website. This is the one system that I have opted to do as I just felt it was easier all around for me.
Anyone can design a website – so start now, and you can learn to design your own art website. If you decide to hire someone to design your website or do the website yourself, be sure to have a website.
4 – A Website Helps Define You As An Artist
One of the reasons a website is so important is that it will define you as an artist. These are somethings your website should do:
- Reflect your art – Is your art fun? Is it serious? Is it religious? Then your website should reflect those things about you and your art.
- Show your personality. – Let your website show a bit about your personality. Do you like fun and bright colors? Then use those colors. Do you like green, then use some green on your site. Have the site reflect on you as an artist.
5 – A Website Should Show Who You Are As An Artist And Why
People will come to the website and be drawn to buy your art because of you and your art. Here some ways you can look to inspire people when they get to your website:
- Tell your story – Use the About Me or the About section of the website to tell your story to your audience. Tell them what inspires you and your art.
- Contact info – Make sure you have obvious and good contact information on your website.
- Where or how to buy – if you have an online shop or your artwork is at a gallery or even a local sale store – tell your audience where and how they can buy your artwork from you. If you are new to selling your art and do not have this all organized yet, don’t worry; the online buying pages can come later.
6- A Website Is Part Of The Art Business
Many artists think, well, I just want to be an artist. I do not want to own a business or do all those things that business people need to do; all I want to do is my art. When you decided to be an artist, you also decided to be a small business owner.
Like it or not, when you are a small business owner there are things you will have to do even if you do not like to do them such as taxes, accounting or even a webpage. A webpage is just part of running a small business.
7 – A Website Helps With Marketing
When you own your own business, you also need to market yourself, so you also need to think like a marketer. That means that you need to do things to get your artwork out there for others to see it, and a website will help you do this.
It is not easy to be a small business owner, and YES, these things will take you away from your artwork unless you have someone who can help you with the business side of things. But whether you do it yourself or you have someone to help you, there are things you need to do; they will need to be done.
8 – A Website Helps You Collect Names Of Potential Clients
From the beginning of your website, start to collect names on your site. You can give away something to try to get people to give you their name and email address. But each of those names can be a potential customer. So it does not hurt to have a program on your website to help you collect names.
A program I recently discovered that I like is Send In Blue. It may take you a while to learn SendInBlue, but once you learn it, it is quite easy to use, and I have found their online tech support to be quite good.
9 – A Website Blog Helps Bring Website Traffic
Content today is important for you to get your search ratings up with your Google searches. One of the best ways to do this is to write some blogs.
The search engines like to see that you are adding content and also quoting other sites. This helps them to see you as a reputable site.
Writing a blog does take time and effort. It is not always easy. To find out more about writing a blog, you can check out our blog Should An Artist Write a Blog? to find out more information on writing a blog and get some ideas for your blog.
10 – You Can Link Your Website With Your Social Media
Social media is also a great way to have your art get some exposure. You can read our blog on 9 Reasons Every Artists Should be On Instagram. We like Instagram for Artists as we love how Instagram is such a great visual platform and gives you a great way to show and talk about your art.
Link your website to your social media accounts and vice versa, have your website information on your social media accounts. This will help to give you some added credibility,
11 – A Website Can Sell Your Art
Another option is that you can look to sell your art online with your website. Today it is quite easy to set up an e-commerce site on your website. You can easily set up for your website to have a page that says something like “Buy Now” so people can easily buy your artwork.
Every artist needs to have a website. A website will help you get some excellent added exposure for your art and yourself as an artist. Do not skip this crucial step of having a website to promote yourself and your art.
Anything I should do to protect my artwork from people copying it?
Suppose one of the reasons you do not want to put your art online is that you are worried that people will copy your art or takes your ideas. One of the things you can do is add a watermark to all the artwork you put online so that it is protected from people taking it and using it without permission. At least if they take it, there will be a watermark, and you can prove that they have used your artwork without your permission.
Are websites still relevant?
The website is still very relevant. Even with social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and linked in, a website is still very relevant in helping you look not only very professional but also to help you find potential customers. So even with all the social media that is out there, a website is still very relevant. But like anything else you do, it does need to be updated frequently so that it will remain relevant to your clients and potential customers.