Approaches on Pricing, Selling, and Managing the Business Side of Art

I.    Introductions to Approaches on Pricing, Selling, and Managing the business side of art

a.    Who are the attendees? – Media, age, ambitions

b.    What are the attendees’ experiences selling art?

II.    Pricing art to sell

a.    Just starting out pricing – time + labor + cost of materials “Don't forget the comparables, though. If you use this formula and your art turns out to be more expensive than what other artists in your area charge for similar art, you may have to rethink your pricing, pay yourself a little less per hour perhaps.” -

b.    Determining your place in the market – 1. Define your market. 2. Define your type of art. 3. Compare your art to artists with similar work in similar markets. – Don’t use dollar values to validate yourself as an artist. 

c.    Asking prices vs. Selling prices – “You don't want to get known for substantially lowering your prices because buyers will catch on, wait you out, and refuse to buy until sale time rolls around.” Be competitive, but do not undercut other artists. It will devalue the market

d.    Retail vs. Wholesale pricing – Galleries will generally offer you anywhere from a 60/40 split in your direction to a 60/40 split in theirs. Any offering lower than that, should be well-researched before accepting. When setting prices, you should take this into consideration. You should still be making money off the piece when selling it for half price. 

e.    Having a range of prices for your art – Some of your potential biggest fans might not have a large budget, so have something those people can afford. Also, having showpieces that are priced higher will help you impress buyers in your abilities and talent. 

f.    Questions on pricing

g.    Feelings about pricing - 

Formulas some people use - 


III.    Selling Art

a.    Venues of selling 

i.    Galleries – Art cooperatives – pay a membership fee/sitting/commission, Consignment galleries – give the art to show, you get a check when it sells, check how many days they have to pay, what the split is, make sure they have experience with art that is similar to yours , Wholesaling to galleries - buy outright for your wholesale price which is usually half of what your retail is

ii.    Art shows – find shows that cater to the market that you identified, juried shows generally cater to higher income levels, applications – make sure you have an artist statement, excellent photos of your best work (not clichéd pieces or groups of pieces), have a booth shot (the best booth you have ever set up – more elaborate and put together than your normal set up), and have applications for more of the big shows

iii.    Online sales – must have excellent photographs of what you want to sell, clear descriptions, must spend a lot of time advertising for yourself, etsy, facebook, your own website, square provides online stores

b.    Displaying your work – art shows you will have to have a set up you can take with you so it should be lightweight, foldable, and not have many extraneous set pieces, more things toward the front of your booth space is better to get people to come in, don’t stand in front or overcrowd your customers; galleries you will sometimes have to help or set up your own show especially in cooperatives, set out to tell a story with the work you provide, walk through it as if you were an outsider to see if it makes sense, ; online you must have great pictures that display your art without any clutter or confusion, if it is functional, make sure the function is clear, have descriptions of size, material, weight, how to use the item

c.    Taking money – Cash sales – make sure you have a separate bank account for your business, deposit cash immediately; Credit card sales – what do you use? Square 2.75% with no monthly fee, ; Intuit/Quick Books 2.4%+25 cents or 1.6%+25 cents with a $20 monthly fee, ; PayPal Merchant 2.7% with no monthly fee ; Galleries – Keep track of all inventory you have at galleries, and keep track of when those items sell (galleries can have things sit there for years without anyone noticing)

d.    Knowing what sells and what doesn’t – Keep track of what your best selling items are, what your least selling items are, what the profit margins are on those items 

IV.    Check that everyone’s questions and issues were addressed and conclude