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Selling Fine Art Online: FASO Mobile-friendly Artist Websites - the Future of Online Art Marketing is Now

by Brian Sherwin on 7/2/2011 8:15:06 AM

This article is by Brian Sherwin, regular contributing writer for FineArtViews. Brian Sherwin is an art critic, blogger, curator, artist and writer based near Chicago, Illinois. He has been published in Hi Fructose Magazine, Illinois Times, and other publications, and linked to by publications such as The Huffington Post, The Boston Globe, Juxtapoz Magazine, Deutsche Bank ArtMag, ARTLURKER, Myartspace, Blabbermouth, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, Modern Art Obsession, Citizen LA, Shark Forum, Two Coats of Paint and Art Fag City. You should submit an article and share your views as a guest author by clicking here.


Over the weekend I took some time to reflect on one of my recent FineArtViews contributions titled, Selling Fine Art Online: Be Prepared for the Art Collectors of Tomorrow. The article focused on how art collectors in the near future will likely expect artists to have a strong online presence and will not give a second thought to buying art online. After all, one could say that the next generation of art collectors will have been raised by the Internet. The article stressed the importance of preparing today for that future by selling fine art online. Reflecting-- I thought of other ways that artists can prepare today. A recent article about mobile-friendly artist websites by FASO founder Clint Watson came to mind. FASO is ready for the art collectors of tomorrow.


Clint Watson's article, Mobile Artist Websites: Are You Ready for the Coming Growth Explosion?, made a clear case for the importance of having a mobile-friendly artist website. Point blank-- Watson feels that embracing mobile devices is vital for artists who want to stay ahead of the curve. Considering the growth of the wireless/mobile industry-- and the trends of mobile device users-- there is little room to argue against Watson's point of view on the topic.


A study last year by Ruder Finn -- one of the world's largest, independent public relations agencies-- found that the majority of Americans spend nearly 3 hours on mobile Internet daily. The study offered some interesting statistics. For example, "youth (44%) are more likely to shop over their mobile phones than the average mobile user (35%)."  A 9% jump may not seem like much until you consider the fact that over 302 million people age 13 and older use mobile devices in the United States-- that is 96% of the US population. In that sense, I would suggest that my predictions-- as well as Watson's-- are validated.


The study also revealed that 62% of male mobile device users-- and 57% of female mobile device users-- conduct business using their mobile device. Those percentages alone suggest the impact that mobile devices will likely have on the online art market. Unfortunately-- as Clint Watson pointed out in his article-- many artist websites, online art services providers, and art sites in general are not prepared to embrace that direction of the market. Needless to say, those focused on selling fine art online should give strong consideration to the impact-- and popularity-- of mobile devices.


Kathy Bloomgarden, Ruder Finn co-CEO has stated, "The mobile phone is becoming the most powerful online device, and the faster businesses can adapt their services to harness consumer mobile intent, the more rapidly they can capitalize on understanding their customers to drive growth." In that sense one could suggest that artists need to provide their customers-- art buyers-- with a mobile friendly art website in order to tap into that aspect of selling art online. Thus, I have to commend Clint Watson for understanding that his customers-- artists-- need to be able to harness mobile technology. FASO allows that.


Obviously I'm excited due to the fact that all of FASO's artist websites now come with an enhanced template option that automatically creates a mobile-friendly version of an artist's online portfolio—all at no extra cost. I know that FASO customers will be able to transition that development into their broader online art marketing strategy. FASO is one of the first online services of its kind to embrace the mobile device explosion-- and if I know Clint, he will think of other ways to help his customers form online bonds with their customers-- art buyers.


In closing, mobile technology will likely impact online art marketing sooner than later-- the popularity of devices, such as the iPhone, continues to grow. This direction will no doubt shape how art is viewed and purchased online. The irony being that many artist websites and online art services have failed to take advantage of the mobile web explosion. In that sense, one could say that Clint Watson is ahead of his industry by understanding the importance of mobile devices and how they may impact online art marketing in the future. FASO artist websites are prepared for that kind of engagement-- and potential. FASO is prepared for the art collectors of today and tomorrow.


Take care, Stay true,


Brian Sherwin


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Related Posts:

Mobile Artist Websites: Are You Ready for the Coming Growth Explosion?

Selling Fine Art Online: Be Prepared for the Art Collectors of Tomorrow

Selling Fine Art Online: What to look for in websites for artists

Topics: art marketing | art website design | art websites | Brian Sherwin | FASO | FineArtViews | selling art online | selling fine art online | websites for artists 

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Marian Fortunati
I agree with you experts and absolutely love to use my "smart" phone to look thing up that I'm interested in.

However, I was surprised recently when I asked readers of my blog about whether they had used the QR codes or mobile tags that are around.
I had included the QR code as part of the information on the wall label next to paintings I have in a restaurant show. I was curious what the reaction of the readers of my blogs would be.
I was especially surprised because I figured that fellow bloggers would be "up" on technology but I found that the vast majority of those who responded don't even HAVE smart phones.

Of course I live in LA, but it seems that every where I go I see people talking, texting or browsing on their phones, so despite the disappointing reaction to my blog query, I am totally convinced that mobile technology will aid us in getting our work out there.

AND I just HAVE to say that it makes me proud whenever anyone accesses my FASO artwork portfolio page using their smart phone... (or any way, actually... LOL)
It's attractive and will engage the viewer to look for more!!!

Well done Clint. Right on Brian!

jack white
Does this mean we will have to get a smart phone? We tried a cell phone and found the thing to be too invasive. We gave up our cell phones a few years ago. We couldn't go to the grocery store without someone calling. We don't know what all a smart phone does. I know in time we will be dragged kicking and screaming into the smart phone age. We will hold out to the bitter end. I love to be able to write my historical novels in silence. If the phone rings, it's a gallery, client or a bill collector looking for the people who had our number 4 years ago. They must be some real dead beats. We average three calls a month for collectors looking for them. This has been going on since we moved in our new home. No matter what I say the bill collectors continue to call looking for Victor Mar----z. Thank the Lord we don't have a cell phone for them to call.
Ps. Good job Brian. It's over my head but I get the general idea.

Marian Fortunati
No Jack... YOU are probably the smart one. I, on the other hand, love to fiddle away time with the gadgets on the phone.... Not that I TALK that much on it.
I suppose we all have our vices.


You mentioned the enhanced template.
Does it automatically happen? Or do we have to set something up?
I am one of those people out in the middle between Jack and Marian--yes,a cell phone, but it's not at all smart, so no way to see those images you posted, specifically of my own website.
Would appreciate knowing if my website already looks like #1 to smart phone people :)


Brian Sherwin
KC -- Automatically. If someone pulls up a site, it automatically defaults to mobile view. There's also a link they can click to view in normal mode.

Donald Fox
I agree that it's a plus to have ready access for those with smart phones or whatever other gadget will compete with or replace them. Currently I'm not one of those people and have no plans of becoming one. Can't even access the internet on my five-year-old cell phone. Don't see any need to upgrade either. I can hold a thought long enough to get to a computer.

A friend once told me about a health challenge that required him to wear a catheter and leg bag. The initial slight inconvenience gave way to a sense of freedom from reliance on restrooms. He could be anywhere and relieve himself automatically at any time. Only occasionally would he have to empty the bag, which could be done at his leisure. He soon discovered, though, that he couldn't run, swim, play basketball, or easily ride his bike as he loved to do.

Frequently I see students addicted to phones, players, handhelds, etc., who multitask but miss huge chunks of information. They can't write coherent sentences or speak without nonsense fillers that disrupt analytical thought. It occurs to me that the convenience of technology may not always be so convenient or productive. Time spent doing one thing means time not spent doing something else. I'm no Luddite; neither am I so keen to embrace the next technological whim.

That said, I'm happy to be positioned with an art website that allows easy phone access. Only time will tell whether that is of much value.

People thought home computers would be just a fad. People thought the world wide web would be just a fad. When laptops gained popularity people said it was just a fad. With information technology I've learned it is better to be prepared.

This is great advice, Brian.
I had decided to abandon donating, because of the off-hand way the organizers treat artists and their need to know who is interested in their work. Organizers refuse to give the list of names for silent auctions, for example, or who buys the work. But this method allows for those interested to get in touch. And of course, for us to be remunerated somewhat by the tax-man.

The images on the FASO example look very clear. The others look hard on the eyes. I honestly don't know how to use these devices but I know my college aged children and their friends can't live without them. They are always sharing things back and forth.


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