On The Rocks
A Captivating Piece by Melaine Graham

There has been a rapid change in how art was sold historically. The digital age has offered the visual art market to grow and evolve substantially. It is estimated that currently online sales make up 1.6% of total global sales, although this might seem less this figure is set to change due to the large investment of millions of dollars in developing online sales platform for original art. Proof of this is evident since in 2013, Artspace obtained an investment of about £5.2m whereas Paddle8 received £3.6m of investment.

This drastic change has played a key role in expanding the art market to the masses. This change is no similar than that of the 19th century where the salons helped expand the art market and in the 20th century the commercial galleries, finally in the 21st century the internet has become the platform for expansion. Changes are taking place not only in how art is sold but also what kind of art is most bought, why it is bought and by whom. Online art platforms are offering some exhilarating answers to these questions and it is no wonder that such platforms have allowed the public to empower as tastemaker.

River
An Enticing Artwork By Margaret Raven

Aspiring buyers are able to better understand their style and judgements of art, artists have the opportunity to target a large audience which is no longer limited to just their local gallery and finally for culture which serves as a crucial representation of all society. The internet bridges the gap between emerging artists and aspiring buyers who actively enter the visual art market and modify its development. Here are five top tips to guide artists who are looking to create a presence in this rapidly expanding online art market.

Against The Wind
An Alluring Piece by Neille Vin

1. Avoid Confusing Sales Platforms with Networking Platforms
Online sales platforms help generate new sales from new clients whereas social media platforms and individual artist websites are designed to help manage existing clients and serve as networking tools. Websites belonging to individual artists have becomes highly inconspicuous on the internet and social media has rarely been considered as a medium for buying art online.

2. Don’t Forget Working with the Traditional Art Market
Don’t try discounting your art from well established gallery market prices and also refrain from using the internet to offload inferior work. Remember online activities should not be considered as an alternative sales tool but as an additional sales tool that can help support and complement your efforts offline.

3. Remember to Stay Proactive & Broaden Your Options
Don’t limit yourself to just one online sales platform, rather join a variety of different online art platforms so that you can spread your options. These wide range of online sales platforms act as medium that offer amazing convenience and choice to art buyers very much similar to art fairs. They seem to be different because they appeal to different art buyers for different reasons.

4. Online Sales Will Never Substitute Face to Face Sales
Face to Face sales have their own charm, several people still prefer buying art from a gallery or an exhibition because they can inspect it before you buy paintings. You don’t get that kind of freedom online. That’s why don’t forego to occasionally exhibit your artwork in several offline spaces.

5. Keep Information Updated & Detailed
Remember that you don’t have a sales team available to answer every question the buyer has, so keep information detailed and updated so that the buyer has a swift and better understanding of the artwork you wish to display online. It is estimated that 92% of art buyers relied on the quality of the artwork image and the information presented before making a purchase.