Several weeks ago we launched our Art and the Internet Survey in an effort to help you better understand what your fellow artists are doing on their websites. We had a great response to the survey with 749 artists participating. As with all of our polls, it’s important to state that these results are not scientific, we are not statisticians, and the respondents were volunteers, not a randomized group.
You can browse through the responses on SurveyMonkey at https://www.surveymonkey.com/sr.aspx?sm=KlsruOmE1Szs2btQM_2f5H9Jd_2fc64WjhpMSMTzgjP1EE0_3d to get an idea of the general answers and trends in the survey, but let’s begin by looking at some of the basic demographics of respondents.
Let’s begin by looking at the demographics of the respondents to get some context for the results. You’ll see that we had a pretty geographically diverse group of respondents, though most came from the U.S. and we had slightly stronger participation from Pacific and East Coast artists (which probably makes sense considering the population distribution of the country). Our respondents tended to be older than 45, and a strong majority of the participants were female.
How Artists Are Using Their Sites
Next let’s look at how artists are using their sites, and how important they feel they are in their marketing efforts.
We can see that many of the respondents feel the most important functions of the site are to market work to buyers, and inform existing customers of new work. Selling is important as well, but only 20% of respondents listed selling as being of critical importance in their online marketing efforts.
Which leads to the question of how much art is actually selling online. Average annual online sales for respondents was over $3,000. This number is skewed however by the top 10% of our respondents (in terms of total $ sales) who reported very strong online sales (more on them later). Removing the top 10% resulted in average sales of $556 per annum, and 57% of respondents reported selling less than $200 worth of art from their website – 48% reported zero online sales in the last year. In other words, the vast majority of artists are seeing very little results in terms of sales from their sites, while a small percentage are seeing very strong results.
The website can also be a tool in helping buyers make decisions about buying even if they aren’t buying directly from the site.
Respondents also reported feeling that their site was going to be of increasing importance in making sales in the future:
Creating and Maintaining Your Website
Unsurprisingly, those artists who can update their own site are far more likely to do so than those who have to send their images out for upload:
Look for additional results as we dive deeper into the data in the coming weeks (be sure to check back to the blog for updates). Are there particular results you would like us to tease out of the data (“do artists in Texas sell more art online?” for example), leave your requested queries, along with your comments about the survey in the comments below.