Part 4. Friction obstacle – overcoming TRUST issues
In our articles so far we’ve been looking at the huge opportunity that exists by selling your art online, and the Friction or barriers of converting browsers into buyers. Referencing art authority The Hiscox Online Art Trade Report 2017 – “Obstacles to future growth. Online art sales growth can only accelerate by increasing the conversion rate of hesitant, non-online buyers by actively addressing their key concerns. These concerns are currently focused around the lack of physical inspection and worries about the work’s condition, authenticity, and the seller’s reputation.”
Today we have early adopters who shop nearly entirely online, from their groceries to their clothes and soon even buying a car will be a select and add to cart experience – and they LOVE it! Actually preferring to be in total control of their purchasing without the need for sales assistants and physically viewing their purchases. Taking one step up to buying art online is not such a jump for this group – but for every early adopter there are many more consumers still hesitant to buy online, and significantly when it comes to purchasing Art online, there are many factors that can affect the consumer’s willingness to overcome the perceived risks of buying the unknown.
There is no substitute. When your prospective customer is relying on an online platform to view their possible purchase they need to be able to see what they are purchasing in as much detail as possible.
‘Happy snaps’ from your iphone or digital camera can sometimes produce inaccuracies in the artwork quality, hide or exacerbate imperfections and lighting used when capturing your image is critical to how a piece communicates itself to a potential buyer when viewing your images online. When your artwork is captured by Art House Reproductions, your customers view the piece of artwork in its best possible quality presentation. In fact these are the same images we use for printing your reproductions, just provided for you as Web-suitable files. This allows you two benefits – great images for your online customers to view ( a small investment to make in marketing your piece of artwork that may sell for hundreds or thousands of dollars) and also you have correct digital files should you wish to explore limited edition or open edition sales (ultimate leverage for your efforts).
BuyArtNow.com.au has addressed this further in two ways for your customers when shopping online – an expanded view of all original art as well as a magnified spot viewer for your reproductions. This allows customers to zoom in on areas they want to see in more detail, giving reassurance in quality and condition.
Clear professional images make viewing your artwork online more engaging for your potential customers. The expanded view for originals (below) allows the buyer to see your work in more detail and is watermarked for your protection.
Artwork offered as reproductions offer a ‘zoom’ magnification tool to show detail as it’s moved over the artwork. Images shown on www.buyartnow.com.au are protected from download by the latest secure encryption to keep your art work as safe as possible whilst being displayed online.
Next we need to consider WHERE people are buying art from.
Quoting from The Hiscox Online Art Trade Report 2017 again, “Third-party sales channels are gaining in popularity. In 2013, 15% of galleries surveyed said they would generate online sales by partnering with an existing art e-commerce platform. In 2016, 26% of galleries surveyed said they planned to partner up with a third-party e-commerce platform in the near future, and this year 27% said this was their future e-commerce strategy. In 2017, 49% of galleries that sell art online say they are doing so through a third-party online platforms.”
Physical galleries certainly will never be obsolete however limitations of seasonal trade, geographical location and also costs of physical real estate to showcase artwork is becoming prohibitive. This move to partner online ecommerce art retailers are an admission that online art sales are starting to significantly impact their ability to service their artists sufficiently and over time it’s expected art gallery space to further decline.
Well run, reputable and promoted online art e-commerce platforms such as www.BuyArtNow.com.au art is not only an artist’s friend, but by forming a total online art experience for the customer, that by nature of the platform exhibits many artists, has a wide variety of styles, subjects, mediums and options, provides a professional and credible place to procure their art. This alleviates many of their concerns of buying art from a trusted source. Art House Reproduction’s well established reputation amongst the art and photography community goes a long way to helping people feel safe buying art promoted on Art House’s site BuyArtNow.com.au.
Action tip no 4. When we’re too close to our own project sometimes it’s hard to be objective. Pop on your ‘customer’s hat’ and view your own online images of your artwork. Do they give the customer enough information to address their concerns about quality, condition, accuracy of colours, dimensions and mediums?
Missed the other articles in this series – you can catch up on them here
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