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The Internet is a powerful marketing tool for artists. A well-constructed website can reap thousands of viewers per day from all over the globe, all of whom can become potential collectors of your work.
To set up a website to display your art, you have several choices: you can do it yourself, you can hire a web designer to do it for you, or you can post your art onto an online artist gallery. Each of these three choices comes with its own pros and cons. Read through these descriptions to decide with route is best for you:
1.) Build your own website: If you are computer savvy, you can create your own website by registering a domain name, selecting a web host, and then building your site using a program such as Dreamweaver or Frontpage. This is the most time-consuming option, because if you don’t already know how to use these programs then you will have to learn them from scratch. These programs can be quite costly, but there are also some free WSYIWYG editors available, such as KompoZer. On the plus side, building your own website allows you complete control of how your work will be presented to the public.
2.) Hire a website designer: If you are pressed for time but you have a big enough budget, you can considering hiring a professional to design your website. Hiring a website designer will usually cost several hundred dollars, depending on the size and complexity of your website. Many designers charge per page. The benefits of hiring a website designer is that the site we will be built a lot more quickly than if you had to learn HTML, CSS and any other necessary computer languages from scratch. A good website designer will know how to present your artwork in the best way possible, using a clean and professional layout. This is something you might struggle with if you try to create a website on your own. Lastly, any decent website designer will also be well-versed in SEO (which we will cover in a future blog post), which is invaluable in generating traffic to your site.
3.) Post your work on an online artist gallery: An online artist gallery is an extensive website that artists can join (either for free or for a fee) to create a profile upload photos of their art. Examples of online artist galleries include ArtMajeur, ArtSpan, and d’Art. These sites tend to have free and paid versions, with extra perks for paying members. This is by far the least favorable of the three available options, because it means that your work will essentially be lost amongst all the other 10s of 1000s of artworks. If you want any degree of web traffic from these types of sites, you will need to become a paying member.
In conclusion, if you want to gain a wider audience for your art through the Internet, then your best bet is to either build your own website or hire a website designer to build one for you.