If you are an emerging artist, you should think of creating a personal website along with profiles on social media platforms. This is very important as online presence is highly recommended if not obligatory for business, art, and sports. To present your art website to the masses, you have to promote and optimize it for search engines. This article explains how you can boost your website ranking and provides more details on backlinks as the most powerful method to achieve that.
Art website: first steps
Before bringing the website to the top of searches, you should create a stable base for it. It is necessary to select a reliable site builder and assign a suitable domain name to your art online platform. This sets up a decent base for future optimization of the website.
Select website builder
While there are many website builders these days, you should rely on the most convenient and credible ones. It is not enough to proceed with the one that appears high on the search results. You should take into consideration the pieces of advice of those people who have also used website builders for creating their art websites. The website building platform should guarantee that your website loads fast, you can select the preferred domain name, and apply search optimization activities without any constraints.
As a rule, most website-building platforms offer a set of predefined templates for art websites. You could select the preferred one and adjust it to your needs at any time.
Select domain name
To reinforce the optimization efforts for your website, set a clear and recognizable domain name. There are lots of services like GoDaddy and Namecheap where you can verify whether the preferred domain name is available. Also, you can buy the domain you like and reserve a place for it on the hosting platform.
The introduction of the .ART domains in 2016 was an ingenious way for artists to differentiate their websites, from the average website domain, and to emphasize their artistry. To search .ART domains, click HERE.
Art website advancement
As your art website is designed, created, and tuned up, it is the right time to apply SEO techniques to it. In particular, you should consider investing much time and enough resources in link building.
The fastest way to make your website highly visible on the web is to gain backlinks from other online resources. Various techniques allow you to do that in different modes, though the objective remains always the same.
One of the primary methods for link building is outreach to other websites via email or other communication tools. That might not always be easy, though you establish cooperation with different instances that way.
Another popular backlink-gaining procedure is by using an automated link building service on the web. Find a credible provider that has a large database of various online platforms and websites that would gladly link back to your website.
If you are keen on writing an article, you can also gain links via guest posting. This is a reliable approach to gain traffic to your art website as well as to increase awareness of your art brand.
Control on-page SEO
Besides link-building practices, it is also crucial to guarantee that your website functions properly. Use dedicated tools for controlling the page load speed on your website, cleaning up your website code, and checking other technical characteristics. This will help to make sure that users stay on the website for long after they find it on search results and follow it.
Analyze website performance
Your website ranking progress can’t be properly estimated in case you do not use proper analytic tools. One of the most popular and effective ones is Google Analytics, which is free to use. There you will be able to see all the characteristics and user behavior statistics on your website, Based on that data, you would be able to derive what could be done better on your website to boost its ranking further.
Even though the art website optimization is crucially important, you should also consider creating your small representation instance on world-known platforms for selling art objects. These could be Etsy and Artspan - the art marketplaces offering creative people the possibility to set up their online storefronts.
Art platforms for creators have embedded optimization mechanisms that allow your art products to be visible on the web by embedding certain keywords. Also, you can insert backlinks to your website from there, thus linking back from credible resources and improving your website ranking.
Mary Hunter is a successful American freelance lifestyle blogger with advanced writing skills. She is currently working for linksmanagement.com. Mary has experience in editing, marketing, and her works appear in different publications and website articles.
Read more helpful art career and marketing articles in our archives HERE.
As an artist, you want people to see your work. After all, the more people get to appreciate your art, the more you can advance your career as an artist and ideally sell more art. One way to do this is by marketing yourself online, either on your own or with someone’s help. Read on to find out the top 10 marketing tips and trends you can use to increase your art website traffic.
#1 Master SEO Basics
Start by learning all the SEO basics. You need to know how to perform keyword research and how to use these keywords in your content. Learn about on-site optimization to further improve your website (e.g. proper navigation, creating a sitemap, etc.)
#2 Optimize Visual Content
Pay special attention to all the visual content you publish because it is crucial for you as an artist. Your images and videos need to be of high quality, but you should also add all the right details to them for SEO (e.g. alt tags for images, descriptions and keywords for videos). Don’t forget to add social sharing buttons to let your audience share your artwork elsewhere.
#3 Start Guest Blogging
Guest blogging is one of the best ways to get more backlinks to your website. If you don’t have time to do it yourself, there are professional writing services you can reach out to for assistance. When you publish your content on someone else’s website or blog, you can include a link to your own site which will guide their audience to you.
#4 Develop Your Link Profile
In addition to getting more backlinks, you should also develop your link profile by using both external and internal links in your website content. Internal links will help you keep users on your website longer while external links (especially to the sources of the facts or statistics you used) will help you look more reputable in the eyes of your audience.
#5 Utilize Social Media
Social media is essential for marketing you and your art. Create your profiles on different social media platforms and regularly remind your followers about your website. Don’t forget to use social media marketing techniques to successfully promote your content on those platforms (e.g. hashtags, tagging, locations, commenting, live streaming).
#6 Promote Word-of-Mouth
Word-of-mouth can easily spread the word about you, but instead of waiting for someone to start talking about you, you can promote word-of-mouth yourself. Reach out to your fans, followers and collectors of your work and ask them to provide a review or testimonial of your work. Then, you can post these on your website and share on your social platforms to get people interested in your art.
#7 Connect with Other Artists
Instead of relying solely on your own efforts and being a lone wolf, it’s a good idea to reach out to other artists like yourself and promote each other. You can partner with other artists to create unique art, host giveaways, and promote each other in different ways. Having these connections will also play a role in helping you advance your career.
#8 Engage with Your Audience
Engagement is important not just for your metrics but also for connecting with your fans. Encourage discussions in the comment section on your website and social media profiles, reply to comments, and so on. All of this shows that you are a friendly person who is happy to engage and connect with their audience.
#9 Make A Posting Schedule
To stay consistent, you will need to create a posting schedule for all the content you publish on your website or social media profiles. This way, you will always have a steady stream of content for your audience to discover and consume.
#10 Measure Performance and Improve
Last but not least, don’t forget to measure the performance of your web content and your website itself to improve your future digital marketing activities. Your updated strategy needs to have the necessary changes that will improve your metrics. Take into account everything – traffic, average session time, conversion rate, comments, social shares, and so on.
There are quite a few ways you can successfully reach a wider audience, but the most important thing is to be consistent with your marketing activities. Use the tactics in this article to help you generate more traffic on your website and find new fans and, ideally, buyers of your art.
Anna Medina is a specialist in different types of writing. She graduated from the Interpreters Department, but creative writing became her favorite type of work. Now she improves her skills while working for the writing services review websites like Best Writers Online with content of any type, but, mainly, assisting students all over the world.
The Coronavirus pandemic is affecting all of us. For artists, like everyone, it has led to the loss of income and cancellation of events and opportunities. No one’s lives have gone untouched by this pandemic but there are many things that we, as artists, can do while we are self-isolating. Below are 10 things artists can do to remain creative, positive and inspired during this time:
1. Continue Creating Art
This is the most important thing an artist can do. Although being stuck at home can be challenging, all that extra time can be an opportunity. Use it to jump-start your creativity. Start a new piece of art or try to finish one that has been giving you trouble. Just continue to create!
2. Evaluate and Update Your Website
At the beginning of every year, we always recommend that artists evaluate and update their websites. For those that have not had the time to do so, this is the perfect opportunity. Keeping your website current, with your current work highlighted, is essential for artists, now more than ever as people will have more time on their hands to surf the internet looking for positive things to view.
3. Evaluate and Update Your Portfolio
Similarly, like evaluating and updating your website, we also recommend artists evaluate and update their portfolios.
4. Review and Update Your Biography & Artist Statements
Life is ever changing and it is important for artists to keep their biographies and artist statements up to date. Also, update your CV by adding any exhibitions, new publications or other pertinent information that has taken place since the last time they were updated.
5. Maintain and/or Grow Your Social Media Presence
Just because you are confined to the house doesn’t mean you can’t show your art to others. Keeping active on social media is a good way to connect with other artists as well as collectors. Keep your art in the forefront of their minds so that when this is over, or even before, you might be able to generate some sales.
6. Take a Virtual Museum Tour
It is important to remain inspired and active during this time of self-imposed (and for some forced) isolation. Museums from around the world are now offering online virtual tours. Visit these museums and be inspired to create more art.
7. Reach out to Friends and Family for Support & Ideas
Physical isolation does not need to also be social isolation. Keeping in touch with others is what is going to get us through this. We need to stay positive and we need the support of friends and family to do so. Reach out and run idea for a new painting by a friend or family member. Get feedback on a piece you’re currently working on and share it once it is completed. This will not only keep you inspired to keep working but will give your family and friends something to look forward to.
8. Take an Online Art Class
Many universities, art teachers and websites are offering free online art classes right now. From Art History to painting, drawing and photography classes, there is something for everyone to get inspired, continue creating and maybe even learn something new.
9. Reach out to Your Collectors
If for no other reason, just to touch base and wish them well. Perhaps send an email and invite them to see your new work on your newly updated website (see point #2 above). They are already fans of your work and perhaps it might inspire them to purchase a new piece, particularly if you decide to offer a discount or limited-time sale.
10. Research & Apply for Art’s Grants & Small Business Relief Programs
Many organizations are now offering grants for artists and small business relief programs. There are many that are geared specifically for artists and the arts community. Apply for any and all that you think you might qualify for. The worst that can happen is they can say no.
We at the Light Space & Time Online Art Gallery are also affected by this pandemic. Like so many others, our lives and livelihoods are being drastically affected by this global crisis. Our income is dependent on entry fees and during a time of financial crisis, disposable income is reduced. Thus, the gallery’s income is exponentially reduced. Nevertheless, we are committed to continuing our work of helping artists to continue to market their art to a worldwide audience.
How are we doing this? We are continuing to host our online art competitions and exhibitions. We are continuing our marketing and promotion efforts for artists. We are continuing to support and encourage our artists to keep positive and keep creating. And we will continue to be here for all of you as an outlet to share your talent with each other and the world because we must all stick together and support each other in this time of crisis.
In that spirit, although LST was scheduled to increase entry fees by $1 starting with the 10th Annual “Landscapes” Art Competition (opening for entries on April 10th), due to the Coronavirus pandemic - we have postponed the increase in entry fees until June 2020.
While LST continues to have one of the lowest entry fees around, we still recognize that artists have a choice of art competitions and exhibitions to enter and that money is tight for all of us right now. We value and are humbled by the loyalty of our artists and we are committed to maintaining our loyalty and support of them.
Thank you again to all of our artists for being such an important part of our gallery! Stay safe and healthy!
At the beginning of every New Year, we post an article with ideas and suggestions for how artists can to kick start the new year. Now that the year 2020 has begun, it is time to review the past 12 months and make plans for how best to tackle your art career goals in 2020.
Have you set up your art marketing goals for the New Year? If not, the following are 5 things you can do to kick start 2020 and improve your chances of success.
Many of these ideas are elementary, but consistently implementing them is not. They are critical for artists if they are to market themselves and their art successfully.
1. Evaluate & Update Your Website
In today’s art world, in order to be taken seriously, it is essential for artists to have a modern, professional, up-to-date website to display their art. The annual cost of a domain is typically less than $20. The cost of basic website hosting can be as low as $3 per month. A website is an investment artists should make a priority in order to be taken seriously.
For those of you who already have websites, when was the last time that you went page by page and link by link through it? If you are like most people it has probably been a very long time! I think that if you were to do this with your website you would find broken links, pages that do not load quickly, graphics, images and other items that have moved, along with pages with misspelled words and similar issues.
Is this how you want your website visitors to see your art? Take some time to make these corrections. Also, if you have pages that do not load quickly due to large image files or due to flash and music features, these items should be corrected or removed as people do not have the time to wait on your pages to load. Otherwise, if not corrected you will be losing these valuable visitors to your site.
Make sure all of the images on your website are sized properly and have a low resolution (a resolution of 72 helps your site load more quickly and protects your art from being copied by unscrupulous people). The images should also be color corrected. (There are many free programs on the internet for this.)
Do you have better images or graphics to replace what now exists on your website? Do you have new artwork that you just have not had time to photograph and add to your website? Do it.
Also, while checking your images, make sure that they are labeled and tagged properly with good image descriptions. Search engines will only index your images if they have descriptions. By doing this, your images will show up in the image search results. When the images are viewed, viewers will be directed to your art website.
2. Rewrite/ Update your Artists Bio and Statement
Review and update your Artist Statement and Artist Biography. An artist does not have to be an accomplished writer to create a well-written Biography and Artist’s Statement, but it is essential for an artist to have at least one. It is important to know the difference between a biography and artist statement. Please read our article “Comparing an Artist’s Biography to an Artist’s Statement” for clarification.
Also, update your CV by adding any exhibitions, new publications or other pertinent information that has taken place since the last time they were updated.
3. Use Social Media
Social media is the perfect platform for artists to employ in order to help market themselves and their art. Why is this? In our opinion, it is easy to identify and connect with the art community when using social media.
We also think it is an effective medium because it is a visual and simple way in which to present your art. Facebook, Pinterest, Linkedin, Instagram and even Twitter provide an artist with opportunities (if targeted properly) to reach viewers who were previously unreachable.
Read our article “Top 10 Reasons Why Artists Fail with Social Media” along with various other social media articles on the LST website.
4. Press Release Marketing
Press release marketing is a low-cost way artists can market their artwork to a wide range of potential viewers. There are many “Free” press release websites, which take, publish and market an artist’s press release copy. One such site is PRLog.org. PRLog’s free press release submission includes a PDF version to send to your mailing list, a search engine optimized page, hyperlinks in the content, and the option to select location/industry and tag listings. In addition, companies like Star One Public Relations offers press release distribution services for as low as $10.00 for distribution to 70+ press outlets. Read our article “Successful Press Release Marketing for Artists” and 6 Benefits for Press Releases for Artists to help guide you in these efforts.
5. Have Your Art Portfolio Reviewed Professionally
A professional Portfolio Review provides an artist with an evaluation of their art and a critique of how the art is being presented to others. Usually, during a portfolio review, the reviewers provide artists with additional ideas on how they can effectively market their art.
Much like art competitions, a Portfolio Review is an additional way in which artists can have their artwork evaluated and measured against other artists.
6. Start a Blog
Artists should consider starting an art blog as a way to attract and direct additional interested viewers to their art websites. An art blog is a great way to expand an artist’s target audience. It is also an effective platform to help artists market their art.
In 2020 we hope you will make these suggestions part of your art marketing efforts. By implementing these recommendations, we believe artists will increase traffic to their websites, find more people interested in their art and ultimately, sell more of their work.
However, as with any marketing program, it is important to focus your efforts and they need to be well executed and performed consistently in order to be successful.
Good luck and have a creative and successful 2020!
Most new and emerging artists are always looking for ways in which to get their art out there and for simple ways in which to promote their art. We have identified 30 websites which accept free art submissions from artists.
These sites are art blogs, art magazines and art related sites that are looking for art to feature on their websites. Being on any of these sites not only raises awareness of the artist’s art but when accepted and shown in these publications, also provides a reason for the artist to publicize this achievement on social media and to their networks.
They all have different requirements and before the artist submits their art, they should make sure that their art is not only appropriate for their subject matter and accepted media but that the art is formatted to that site’s requirements.
The following are 30 websites that are presently accepting art submissions. Just make sure that the submitted art is deemed appropriate to that particular publication;
Before you submit your art to any website or to any art competition, the artist should always check and see what that particular website’s Use Rights and Copyright policy is.
Some websites, when they publish an artist’s art may retain not only the perpetual use of that art but in some cases, will take over the copyright of that art. Watch out… be careful!
Always find out what their policy is prior to submitting any art. If this information is not on their website, email them and find out what their actual policy is. If you are not happy with their Use Rights and Copyright Policies then do not submit any art to them.
Try to submit your art over the next 30 days to these 30 websites and get your art out there and exposed to thousands of viewers. Also, if your art is eventually accepted by any of these sites, you will soon have 30 events in which to publicize this accomplishment to your social media networks.
Also, please read our article post Can You Lose by Entering a Free Art Contest? Yes!
By Jacob Smith, Guest Blogger – Selling art is easier than ever before thanks to the World Wide Web. However, if you’re just starting out with selling art online, then be sure to consider the five following options;
Your Own Website
We’ll get into some great third-party websites in a moment, but don’t forget that it’s important for you to have your own site, too. For one thing, you won’t have to worry about losing money on overhead related to someone else’s site.
Also, if you build up enough of a following, you’ll only ever need to concentrate on your website, making it much easier to display your work and sell it.
Finally, having a site is like having a business card these days. If you meet someone in real life who wants to see your art, you should have a site of your own to send them to. Otherwise, they may take you for an amateur.
Websites Your Market Frequents
Again, we’ll get to specific sites in a moment, but this is worth bringing up. Many of you have a very niche market for your site. You could probably describe your average buyer in pretty decent detail.
If that’s the case, then it shouldn’t be hard to figure out where they frequent online, too. Look into how much ad space would cost on those sites or, if it has a forum, get involved on there to generate interest. These are great shortcuts to bringing people to your site where they’ll become customers.
Alright, let’s start our actual list with one of the most well-known options on the Internet. This site already gets a ton of traffic, so while you will need to work hard to stand out from other artists, the upside is that there are thousands of people visiting Etsy every single day.
The site also has a very supportive community that will provide you with lots of helpful advice on how to make the most of it. https://www.etsy.com
If you plan on listing your art for more than $1,000, Artplode is definitely worth checking out. The site takes a $60 fee to post any piece of artwork, but that’s remarkably low when you consider you’ll pull in at least $1,000 per buyer. https://www.artplode.com
eBay may not be the Internet powerhouse it used to be, but its art section still gets plenty of traffic. You could easily begin selling art today by uploading photos of your work.
While you’ll want to put some time into making sure you understand the best practices for selling art on eBay, it will be worth it.
One of the major benefits of eBay is that, after enough sales, you’ll have a very good idea what prices you should be charging. This is always a challenge for artists, but eBay will give you some very real feedback to start with.
There are countless other sites you could sell on, too. For now, though, focus on getting your own site up and running, figuring out if there are specific sites that would be best based on your audience and then choosing one of the other three we listed. http://www.ebay.com
About Jacob Smith
Jacob Smith is a designer and retoucher living in Chicago, Illinois. ProductViz is Jacob’s illustration studio, focusing on digital imagery and branding. Jacob has developed the Visual Intelligence method of presenting art. Visual Intelligence is the name coined to describe this process: turning a jpg (or other image file or your art) into a professional photograph in the context of a beautiful interior, gallery, or setting. www.productviz.com
Light Space & Time Online Art Gallery (LST) is very excited to announce that they have adopted and changed their domain extension to .ART. Their website URL has been changed and it is now www.lightspacetime.art.
John R. Math, Gallery Director explains the reason for this extension change, “The .ART extension has been a long time coming for the art community and it is finally here to be used by art organizations, art museums, artists and art galleries.”
Math continues, “The .ART extension helps to immediately identify www.lightspacetime.art as a member of the art world and it now positions the LST gallery as a player in the international arts community.”
The vision of the. ART extension is to responsibly advance the art world through technology and creativity. The mission of the .ART extension is to create a global community; to build new territory on the internet that is dedicated to the world of arts and culture.
Light Space & Time Online Art Gallery would like to inform their followers to change their web browser bookmarks from the old .com extension to the new www.lightspacetime.art address.
The following are some thoughts on what an artist can do to improve their chances of success in the coming New Year. Contained in these ideas are links to additional articles and posts which will explain and detail these concepts more fully for the reader;
1. Check all of the pages of your website to see if they working properly and loading quickly. If you can speed up the loading of your Home Page, this should be done. Besides being annoying to some viewers, slow loading speeds can negatively impact whether your website gets a higher page rank or not. Also, make sure that your website links (internal and external links) are working and that the format of each page is the way in which it was intended to be viewed (for whatever reason, things move, stop working, disappear, images and graphics can suddenly not be viewed).
2. Make sure that all of the images on your website are sized properly, with a low resolution (A Resolution of 72 will help your site to loader more quickly too) and the images should be color corrected as well.
Are there better images or graphics that can be substituted for what now exists on the website? . This should be done in order to get the search engines to index your images (Without image descriptions the images will not be indexed). By doing this, they will ultimately get your images to show up in the search results and when the images are viewed, they will also direct the viewer to your art website as well.
3. Review all written text and images within your art portfolio. Whatever parts of the portfolio can be improved upon should also be done. Are there any new images that you can display? Are there better images that can replace present ones in your portfolio? Try to upgrade and update wherever possible within your art portfolio. Make sure all have titles, sizes and pricing information.
4. Review and rewrite your Artist Statement and Biography. Update your CV adding any exhibitions, new publications and any other pertinent information that has taken place since the last time that it was posted on your website or printed in your portfolio.
5. Review any of your social media accounts, update or complete your profiles. If any of your social media profile images can be improved or upgraded, then they should be done and also add any other new information to those social media profiles as well. Just make sure that whatever is written or is shown on the profiles is spelled correctly and with proper sentence structure.
Remember, a social media profile is almost like having an online resume’ for the whole world to see. The idea of a Social Media Profile is to get people to want more information about you by going to your art website. This is accomplished with a completed, well written and attractive Social Media Profile.
Here are a few other ideas for an artist to try and to follow in the New Year; In order to drive more traffic to your website, an artist should consider starting an Art Blog for the New Year. An art blog helps to brand you as an expert, expands your target audience and ultimately will provide more visitors to your website.
There are many free Art Portfolio Websites where an artist can join and also expose their art to many more viewers. Whether it is an Artistry Registry, Directory or an Art Portfolio website, any of these platforms will help to direct traffic back to the artist’s website and should be freely employed by the artist.
An artist should start an ongoing online public relations campaign for all important art-related occasions, events, and functions that they are involved in throughout the year. Here is an article that we posted with some ideas to follow; Top 10 Events for Artists to Send Out Press Releases.
If the artist is totally happy with their marketing efforts and with the volume of sales of their art, then all of the suggestions above are totally unnecessary. However, if the artist is disappointed with their results, then we believe that some of these ideas may help the artist to be more successful in 2014.
Happy New Year to all art professionals from the Light Space & Time Online Art Gallery
Next, for your art, an artist’s website is one of the most important tools that an artist can have to generate interest in their art. If an artist’s website is poorly designed, slow to load and difficult to navigate, the artist will lose a visitor’s interest, create a high “bounce rate” and subsequently lose potential art sales!
The art business has changed dramatically in the last 5 years and there is no reason not to see it evolving more in the future. Due to technology, a 2 or 3-year-old website is probably now out of date and an artist must create and maintain an up-to-date, well designed and fully functioning website or they will not receive the traffic and the ultimate results that they desire.
Here are the most important sections (in the order of rank) that an artist’s website should contain:
1. Art portfolio.
2. Pricing, size and media information.
3. Contact information.
These sections are the real “bottom line” in terms of the information that an artist needs on their art website. It is a pretty simple concept to follow. With just that information alone, an art buyer, art rep or gallery owner can make a decision to go further in the buying process with you or not. All of the rest of the information that you could post on your website is secondary to these three features!
Yes, you can include and have an artist statement, a biography, a CV, a blog and/or a list of shows that you have participated in, but overall the original three elements that I previously spoke about should be the focal point and the building blocks of your art website. You can branch out and build your website from there with your other supplementary information, but always let the visitor easily (and without distraction) find and view the above-described sections quickly.
A poorly designed website usually requires visitors to hunt for information, click and back click their way around a website to discover or try to find these elements. If an artist does not design their website in this manner then they will lose their visitors and subsequently have a high “bounce rate” (a bounce rate is an analytic term which measures the time people spend on a website and a high bounce rate indicates that visitors leave the website quickly).
Today, people are too busy and cannot take the extra time to navigate their way around your site. Therefore, you must make it easy, make it simple and make sure your website is quick to load and is fast when someone is navigating your website! Why is this? You want your website to load and link to other sections of the website quickly for two reasons: 1) In order for your visitors not to get frustrated and leave the site; and 2) In order for Google to not penalize your Page Rank when they index the site, as speed of loading is part of their Google’s algorithm when evaluating and indexing a website for page rank.
Try to analyze (objectively) if your Art Portfolio, Pricing & Media Information, and Contact Information are easily available to a visitor, both in terms of visibility and speed. If they are not, then I would begin the process of redesigning or upgrading your website in order to help your visitors to navigate your website more efficiently.
Every month, at least 10% of the artists who enter our art competitions do not maintain an art website. I am not sure why, but it may have to do with the artist’s perception that an art website must have potential costs, or that there is a lack of time to maintain an art website or it is the fear of not knowing how to set up an art website? I am not sure if these assumptions are correct, as only the artist could tell us their reasoning for not having a website.
The good news for all artists is that there is a myriad of websites for artists that are easy to set up, very simple to maintain and the best benefit of all to the artist is that they are totally free! Artists who have or do not have an art portfolio website should take advantage of these free web platforms to market their art.
There are many free art portfolio websites that artist can set up, maintain and use to market their art. Every day there are new sites that are coming online whereby artists can join and market and promote their art. There is absolutely no reason not to have an online presence to promote your art. Here are the advantages and disadvantages of setting up and maintaining a free art website;
1. The website is free to set-up.
2. The web hosting is free.
3. Easy to set-up and load art to.
4. Able to market from that platform to social media.
5. The web host promotes their site to attract visitors.
1. Part of a community of other artists.
2. Difficult to find your website/art portfolio.
3. The art is commingled with ads and other artist’s art.
4. In most cases, Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is not possible.
5. Being free usually means that there are limitations on design and size.
If an artist already has a self-hosted art website, they should also take advantage and join as many free websites as possible in order to direct that traffic to their main art website or art blog. Many of the newer free art website platforms also provide the artist with blogging capabilities, press release distribution, and art event promotion as well. Here are 20 free art websites that any artist can be a part of in order to display, promote and market their art;
I am sure that there are at least 20 or 30 additional free art portfolio websites not mentioned in this article that any artist can search for and locate on the internet in order to be a part of as well. Whether an artist has a main art website or not, they should take advantage of these free and easy web platforms to expand their market audience and to promote their art.
Cloudwards.net has an article posted where they rate the best website builders on the internet titled 8 Best Website Builders That Help You Create a Website in 4 Minutes or Less. You may also be interested in another article post of ours titled "101 Free Art Websites to Help Artists Sell Their Art".
We have all done it. In our rush to post our art to our art websites, we upload the image of our art without optimizing that image, in order to help search engines to find and index that art. Why is this important to an artist? If you want to attract more visitors to your art website, it is essential that your art images be optimized for any of the most important search engines such as Google, Bing, and AOL.
How can an artist optimize their images for search engines? First, an artist should always label their image file names with a keyword rich title. Let us assume that we love to paint different trees. Our website contains images of trees and we want the world to discover our website and our paintings of trees. How can we upload and label our image files properly in order to be found by the search engines? An image file name should be as descriptive of the image as possible. A file name of DSC_00254 will be ignored when indexed but the file name Watercolor-Florida-Palm-Tree will be indexed, as it contains descriptive searchable keywords.
In addition to the file name being searchable, all images should also have searchable titles. A searchable title would contain a short description and incorporate using keywords in the title. An example would be Oak-Tree-Leaves, rather than Tree-DSC_00254.
Any uploaded images should also contain a description of the image or what is known as “Alt Attribute” or “Alt Text”. Since a search engine cannot “see” an image they need a reference device which describes to them exactly what the image is. This is known as an Alt Text or Alt Attribute and it provides to the search engines with important information when they crawl your website and index that image. Therefore, an Alt Attribute should be crafted with care, be brief and contain a keyword rich title and description of the image. For example, an alt attribute of Tree is better than DSC_00254. An alt attribute of Maple-Tree is better than Tree. An alt attribute of Old-Maple-Tree is better than Maple-Tree.
Other things that you should be aware of and which will enhance your chances of having your image indexed, is that any of the text on the page that the image appears should be related to that image. It is extremely helpful if the text also has some of the same keywords that the image title and image description contains. Any links on that page should also be related in some form to the image as well.
Finally, if possible, if the actual image contains a link to another page related to that image then the rank for that image will be much higher than a non-linked image.
Try the above suggestions and when taken together and incorporated when posting images to your art website, the chances of your art being discovered increases dramatically. Also, if images that are already posted on your website are not described, named and titled properly, go back and take some time to bring your images up to date. By accomplishing this, you are doing one more thing that most artists are not doing when it comes to marketing their art and increasing the number of visitors to their website.
Today, an artist must have a well-designed website in order to present their artwork to prospects, gallery owners, and other interested parties. At the minimum, an artist website should provide the viewer a sample of the artist’s art, an overview of their experience and their contact information.
Because of the overwhelming amount of artists who want to be represented by art galleries or who want to sell their art on their own, they must have a website that is easy to navigate and that will load quickly. If a visitor to their website requires too many “clicks” to a slow in loading and difficult to navigate website, the artist will risk losing that visitor.
Though an art website is the beginning of the selling process, a poorly designed and ineffective website can stop a prospect from investigating that artist’s work further. A professional artist website should have the following 10 basics for a visitor to evaluate whether they want additional information about the artist, their artwork, and experience;
1. Biography: An artist should have a summary of experience that will provide to the reader, at a quick glance, an overview of the artist’s education, experience, awards and honors. In addition this area would detail any related art experience and finally any article/publishing experience that the artist may have had.
2. Artist Statement: The artist should have a statement that will explain in a concise manner what their artwork means to them and their reasons for creating their artwork. Always, this information should be presented in plain English and in non-technical artistic terms to the reader.
3. Gallery or Portfolio: This area of the website is the most important section for the viewer. The artist should not overload this section with too much artwork, but rather it should have a good representation of their overall work which demonstrates their artistic skills. The images should load quickly and if the artist is selling on their own, pricing should be listed.
4. Representation: The artist should detail any current galleries, individuals and firms who represent the artist. This section has a two-fold purpose of letting the viewer know where they can see the artist’s work in person, but it also subliminally states to the viewer that there are other professionals who think that their art is worthy. It is a form of a third-party endorsement of their artwork.
5. Contact Information: Believe it or not, I see artists who omit this information on their websites! At the very least, an artist should provide, street address, telephone number and email address. In addition, provide, IM, fax and any secondary means of contacting the artist. Search engines like addresses! If possible, have the contact and address information in several areas on the website. This will help with the artist’s page rank.
6. Lead Capture: Have a section in the website or better yet, in a sidebar that appears on all pages for a viewer to sign up for additional information, newsletter, blog, mailing list, future shows etc. Make it easy for the viewer to do this too, otherwise most people will not make the effort to contact you on their own.
7. Social Media: The artist should provide links to various social media sites that they belong to and communicate through. In addition to providing the viewer with additional means to communicate with the artist, Social Media provides a means for the artist to develop and build their brand. At the very least, the artist should be promoting their artwork on Facebook, Twitter, and Linkedin.
8. Press Releases & News: Any news of interest should be posted and showcased for any viewers to the website. This information can be about a gallery opening, sale of artwork or a donation of artwork to a local charity event. There are many free Press Release sites that artists can use to do this. These PR sites are looking for newsworthy information, not full out promotional pieces.
9. Links of Interest: Links should be industry related (not personal family and friend’s links). Links can include galleries where the artist has shown their art in the past, suppliers, museums and art related websites. When linking to someone, it is wise to always contact them and inform them that you are linking and the artist should always ask for a reciprocal link back to the artist website. Websites also get ranked based on the amount and the quality of backlinks.
10. Blog/Newsletter: If the artist has a blog or newsletter that is industry related (and the artist should have this to help drive traffic to their website) this should be included with any reprints or at least links to these publications.
Overall, these are the most important sections that an artist should have for their art website. If their current website does not have the capacity to allow the artist to have this information, then they should find a website hosting firm that can provide this. Speaking of web hosting, the artist should have a URL named after themselves. This makes it easy for any prospects, art galleries and any interested parties to find the artist on the Internet. If the artist’s website is with a package hosting/website company, then they should spend the extra money to register their name separately for their URL name too.
One other critical component that an artist should have is Google Analytics. This is a free service that you can have a with a free Google account. Google Analytics will show the artist exactly where their website traffic is coming from (search, links & direct traffic), how many visitors are new vs. how many are returning, what keywords are being used to find the website, what page they were on when they entered the website, how much time they spent on the site and provide to the website owner with an overall analysis of who their viewers are. Google explains in simple terms how a website owner can use this information to their advantage and how to fine tune their website and presentation for more traffic. Remember, this is free information that is provided by Google.
Besides the quality of their art, an artist website is one of the most important elements that an artist can have when it comes to showcasing, promoting and presenting their art. The website should be designed well for the viewer to evaluate the artist’s artwork and conversely, it should be designed for the artist to be able to evaluate who and why they are interested in the artist’s work.