Your website is the core of you online marketing. It supports your other marketing efforts, and vice-versa. A lone website with no other marketing support won't be very effective, if at all.
If you are just starting out as an artist and getting your first website, you have a great opportunity here to do a lot of things right that most artists get wrong in the beginning.
If you have a website and want to improve on what you have, pull up your site and refer to it as you read. Where are you weak? Focus on improving those things.
If you are well established with your art business and "have it all covered," realize that all this marketing stuff changes almost daily. For example, if your website isn't updated to stay compliant with current Internet and SEO standards, you can be penalized for following old standards.
Start here, and let me know if you want another pair of eyes to review your website or if you need help with a new website or bringing the one you have up to speed.
Is your website:
- Easy to use? For the VIEWER.
Think about how you sometimes go to a website and there are all kinds of things to trip over, that slow you down, confuse you, and make it a trial just to find what you're looking for. Don't do that to your collectors. Seriously.
Maybe you can read your website easily, but can others who are older or who don't have perfect vision read it easily?
- Organized so people can get to the info they want, fast?
It takes time to work out a structure for your site that will make it easy for people to find what they need. Take the time, it's worth it. Once people get mired in a maze of click here, click there, and don't know where they are, you'll lose them waaaayyy before they take out their wallet or contact you.
- Pleasant to look at and use?
Do you have (in addition to your beautiful art) enjoyable graphics and colors that support your art, interesting well-written copy, and pages short enough so they don't have to scroll for days?
- Set up so that viewers want to move forward and buy or inquire?
Your website should help move the viewer through the info and to the point where they contact you or buy something.
There's a lot that can be built into your site to make it friendly to search engines. After that, there are lots of things that can be done by a competent "white hat" SEO specialist to keep you up there in the search engine results. Good SEO is an ongoing process, NOT a do-it-once-and-forget-about-it thing.
- Updated regularly to keep it fresh?
Stale and outdated content makes you look unprofessional or even out of business. Keep it updated, at least four times a year. Plus, the search engines will like you much better for it.
- Consistent with your marketing identity?
Your "brand" is how people perceive you. Ideally, they look at your colors, logo, design style for your marketing materials and know who you are even before they see your name or work. Start with a consistent color scheme, fonts and layout style. Develop graphics that are uniquely yours. Use your identity on your website, business cards, brochures, postcards, PowerPoint presentations, all kinds of presentations, banners, posters, everything.
- Coordinating with your social media efforts?
Is your website helping people find you on social media sites like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Pinterest? Are your social media efforts bringing people to your website?
- Making your work, artwork, products/services look stellar?
This one drives me nuts. People spend good money on a website, or hours of their own time, and then use crappy images of their work. Why? I wish I knew. That image may be the only time a collector sees your work before they buy. If you can't take professional-quality photos, pay a pro to do it. Your art is worth it.
- Set up to load quickly?
Some websites are so heavy with large image files and junk that it takes a l-o-n-g time for everything to load onto the screen. Ugh! Images for web are different (and much smaller) than images used elsewhere. Learn the difference or get help. Plus, big fat high resolution images are prime candidates for theft.
- Making you look professional?
Your website should look professional not just to you but for your VIEWERS who could be your collectors, potential collectors, art critics, the press/media, galleries, retail stores, and museums. Check your website stats to find out which pages attract and hold people there, that's great info to know about how you're coming across.
We support artists with advice on DIY, website updates, and new websites plus social media setup/fine-tuning, database setup, artist inventory setup, email newsletter setup/templates, and just about everything you need in your art business.
Let me know if I can hand-craft some business support just for you!