Today we have to constantly keep up with the “on demand” lifestyle of rapidly growing internet users and compulsive buyers, so if you are an artist, it’s not a bad idea to start thinking of ways to display and sell your artwork online. Once you’ve decided to promote your art work on the web, you will have many options to choose from.
Since, it can be very overwhelming to find a site that meets your needs and budget, design for your template, host a large number of image files or videos, and so on and so forth- I thought I might simplify the process for you by reviewing and comparing the more economical hosting sites out there specified for artists. I am excluding big name hosting sites such as DreamHost and Dreamweaver, since they tend to be less user-friendly, or should I say artist- friendly, for the purpose of personalizing your artistic thought and advertising your artwork.
Here’s what I consider to be your best bets:
Foliotwist offers two good deals-
1) $39.95 per month. A starter website package for first-time art website owners with lessons, weekly reviews, and 24/7 help and support, valid for a full year. This will be a little more pricy than choice #2 because of the additional help/support offered.
2) $24.95 per month. For the more website savvy experts that want to save, you can try the Website Pro, with no extra help, just a website.
Perks: Once you seal the deal with Foliotwist, you will be featured on their website. Your name will be displayed alphabetically under the artist library page. Here is a link to the frequently asked questions that I will refrain from repeating, http://foliotwist.com/faq/
The most appealing deal that FASO offers is the Forever Free Plan, which as you would expect allows you to join and use many services (http://faso.com/free ) “free” for 60 days (but not forever). However, the general pricing gives you several low-cost options:
beginners - $8/month, professional- $28/month, and platinum unlimited - $40/month.
Like Foliotwist, FASO offers the same artist website engine, and all that extra help/support service. So, what really distinguishes the two sites, besides the prices? I would say it’s the extra resource that FASO offers, a free daily e-newsletter called FineArtViews . The newsletter is constructed to help artists improve their individual sites with marketing tips, reviews, and personal articles.
Here’s a great source on reviews of hosting sites to see what the users rate on support/ pricing/ reliability: http://www.webhostingjury.com/reviews/dreamhost
If you want to go beyond the sites I’ve suggested, try the following:
When typing keywords in the search engine, be specific! If you are looking for a site to publish your photography, painting, interior/graphic design, and illustrations or merely to exhibit your art portfolio, include what it is you want to show. Chances are you will receive links to other artist’s sites that have used hosting sites geared to their area of focus.
Please feel free to leave your comments if I left out any vital details or can think of other sites worth mentioning, Thanks!
Keep your eyes peeled- I will feature another blog soon on suggestions and things to avoid when designing your site.
To be continued…
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