Choosing the right artist website service is not always easy with the many options available for artists. There are numerous portfolio services and places to host a website. How do you decide which one is right for you?
Here are some very basic questions to ask yourself before selecting a website for your portfolio:
First decide on what you want from your website. Is it just for display of your art, or are you hoping to sell art via the website?
What is your level of expertise for designing a website?
How much time you have to dedicate to building, maintaining and promoting a website?
Below is a basic guideline to go by in selecting where to place your portfolio on the web, according to your level of familiarity and expertise with the internet.
How to Select the Right Artist Website Service for Art
New Internet ArtistsI know how overwhelming the internet can be for those who are new to the internet world and using it for art promotion. There is much to learn, from uploading photos to SEO for your website. I suggest taking a step back, and pondering what you want from the web.
Do you just want a portfolio just to display your artworks online for friends and family, or will it be to sell your art to collectors?
Those new to the internet have a few options for approaching the building of an artist website:
Learn everything you can about promoting art on the internet, social networking, and SEO for artist websites.
Google will be your friend. Much of the information is available for free on the internet. I have also provided loads of useful knowledge about art marketing and artist websites at Artpromotivate, and will continue to do so.
When you are confident enough to build your own website, apply all the things you have learned to a newly created website.
Set your art up on a free web site provider such as Weebly or Wix.
These websites are very simple and intuitive to create, and can provide great experience with web designing.
If you find that its right for you, there are premium upgrade options along with a way to setup a custom website domain.
Find someone with knowledge of website creation and Search Engine Optimization to design your website.
Either get help from a friend or hire a web designer.
A professional web designer may cost anywhere from hundreds to thousands of dollars, but there are many lower costing services on the web, such as ArtistWebsites.net.
You will not have to deal with website setup, but realize that you still have to know how to maintain your website by uploading images and writing descriptions, not to mention knowing how to promote it.
Intermediate Web-MastersIf you have been following and reading the articles here at Artpromotivate, you should have sufficient knowledge to setup a website of your own. The best way to build an artist website is to learn and apply what you learned while you create a website. We have a whole series coming up on how you can do just that. Please subscribe now if you haven’t already so you will not miss an important post in this series.
Advanced Experience with the InternetHosting a website is the choice of many artists, and does not necessarily require extensive knowledge of web languages, such as HTML, CSS and PHP. But, it does require learning how to use Cpanel, creating the website on your computer with software such as Adobe Dreamweaver (for making a website from scratch), and uploading files to your web host via a ftp client.
This gives the artist full control over the layout and design of their website.
Many web hosts offer Wordpress, which is is the choice of many artists. The learning curve for Wordpress is relatively fast. Many free and premium templates and plugins are available which will make creating a website very simple. For those who choose Wordpress for art, I suggest spending some time searching for a good portfolio template. Premium templates are relatively inexpensive and are worth the investment. You will receive a unique professional design with advanced features such as being SEO ready, along with support from the creator of the template.
Hostgator and Bluehost both have Wordpress as a way to create a fully functional website/ blog.
I realize there are many of you who already have a portfolio on the web. Many artist websites are featured in the free website links section. But, for those who do not yet have a website for your portfolio, hopefully this article has shown you what is available, so that you can decide for yourself what is best for your situation.
Thank-you for reading and have a wonderful day!