So you’ve put some photos and other artwork up for sale on Imagekind (or a similar art-selling website, like RedBubble ), and now you’re wondering how to increase your art sales on Imagekind.
Perhaps you haven’t sold any prints yet and you’re getting discouraged, or maybe you’ve already achieved some success and you’re hungry for more.
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Either way, this article should help—I went in search of answers and interviewed Imagekind’s marketing manager, Ben Rogovy, as well as two of Imagekind’s best selling photographers, Michael Longfellow and Eyal Nahmias, to get their expert perspectives on selling art through Imagekind.
My mission: to find out exactly how to increase art sales on Imagekind . Here are the 7 tips I came up with from those interviews.
1. Create a website or art blog to promote your work
In order to sell art online through sites like Imagekind, you first need to people to see your work. But with so many other artists and photographers on the site, how do you get people to visit your galleries?
One answer is to create your own blog or website—and since the goal is to bring a certain type of art buying traffic to your Imagekind galleries, your website or blog should obviously be aimed at art and photography buyers.
Be prepared to put in some time and effort to create something that looks professional and has great content. . . it’s a long term project to build a website that brings in lots of traffic by itself.
Here’s one way to speed up the process, however: write a fantastic blog post and submit it to PhotographyVoter.com (if you’re a photographer) or EmptyEasel .
Larger websites like these can send a stream of traffic your way and if your blog is interesting, those visitors will stick around for more.
For some inspiration, feel free to take a look at my photography blog or follow the links at the beginning of this article to see how photographers Eyal Nahmias and Michael Longfellow have set up their sites.
2. Use keywords and descriptions intelligently
Use interesting and relevant titles, descriptions, and keywords to help art buyers find and connect with your work on Imagekind. Try describing the location, mood, event or concept of your photos and artwork.
In most cases, the more information you give, the better—you can’t know exactly how a potential buyer is going to search for something, but you can describe your artwork as perfectly as possible so that the most relevant searches lead to your artwork.
3. Pay attention to quality and consistency
Make sure your artwork is of the highest technical and aesthetic quality. By publishing only your best work you’ll raise the overall perception of your portfolio.
All artists should make sure their images are appropriately sharpened, colour balanced and dust spotted. Learn how to do these things properly (or get someone else to do it).
It’s also important to be active on Imagekind and to continually update your galleries and post fresh work. Remember, when you add new galleries they appear on a separate page on the Imagekind site and this will bring new viewers to your work.
4. Choose the best frames for your art
Choosing the best frame and paper for your images may not directly increase sales, but whenever a frame is purchased with your art on Imagekind, you’ll earn a little more.
If you leave the framing options up to the buyer, it’s possible they won’t think of it, or simply be overwhelmed by all the framing options available. When you pick a frame beforehand, however, they’ll see a "Purchase as the artist intended" button and have an easy framing option that they’re likely to take you up on.
5. Promote, promote, promote
Promote your Imagekind galleries to everybody you know, and especially to anyone outside of Imagekind. Ben Rogovy had this advice:
"It’s always best to start where you’re already known and work outward. Often times an artist may have a support network of family and pre-existing fans/friends. Those people are a good base to start word of mouth. Putting their username.imagekind.com URL on business card and in email signatures is a good way to pick up free exposure as well. Involvement in online forums and blogs works too."
Michael Longfellow added:
"You want to find and build your audience in everything you do which requires multiple approaches to increase your visibility. Gallery events, mailings, building relationships with magazine editors in your niche, fundraisers. These types of activities can all help to get you additional exposure."
If this is beginning to sound like hard work, it is! But it’s also the way to success.
6. Create your own brand
Take your self-promotion to the next level and start thinking of your work as a product to be branded. Design a logo for your website or blog (the Empty Easel logo is a great example). Think about what makes your photography or artwork unique. Who is your audience? How will you create an audience and market your work to them?
Michael explained how branding has helped his sales:
"For my work, I decided to focus primarily on the canvas prints (though I use frames too) because they look so great and really add an aesthetic magic to the types of shots I take. That canvas mystique has become part of my brand. Any time you can differentiate yourself you’ll have an advantage and will stand out from the crowd."
7. Hold an exhibition outside of Imagekind
If you’re planning an exhibition of your photos or artwork, consider ordering prints of your artwork from Imagekind at the base rate for contributors. Why? Eyal Nahmias gave the following reason:
"Since the volume of prints bought raises the seller’s ranking, my [ranking] rose dramatically after I had to purchase personally a large amount of images to be printed on 20×30 for an exhibition I did in Israel last March. Many of those images were sold to the public, and others through the Imagekind search engine and referrals."
And beyond boosting your seller’s rankings, setting up your own exhibit would also give you a perfect networking opportunity to try out several other tips in this article.
If you’re serious about increasing sales on Imagekind, I’d encourage you to at least try some of the tips mentioned here. They’ve worked for some of the top photographers at Imagekind, and they’ll work for you too.
To read more articles by Andrew Gibson, including his full-length interviews with Michael Longfellow, Eyal Nahmias, and Ben Rogovy, please visit his fine art and photography website at www.magicalplacesfineart.com .