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Thin Coat Of Varnish, Episode 4: Should You List Your Prices On Your Website?

Video version:

Podcast version:


Harsh Truth With Matt Gondek, Episode 42: Go to 1:07:00 to hear the comment that sparked this discussion for me.


Highlights from the discussion:

Kelly McKernan: "When I don't see a price, I assume I can't afford it. I don't want my potential patrons to associate that feeling with my work. "

Amy Woods: "As an art collector I appreciate it when the price is listed online. It helps me determine whether or not I can afford that artist’s work. I believe that any business (even art) needs to be forthright with their prices."

Dave Palumbo: "Tacky or not, it's definitely more likely to make sales. My understanding from my gallery is it also gives confidence to buyers at shows when they look up your work and see comparable pricing elsewhere as a reference."

Ricky Mujica: "Just use a classy font, then it doesn't matter!"

Julia Lundman: "I buy art all the time and find it annoying when I don’t see a price."

Kyle Buckland: "We have to start thinking about selling to a new generation, the generation that grew up with the "buy it now" button. The kids of today will be the art collectors of tomorrow."

Joshua Been: "I don't do it because I have flexible pricing. Meet the market in the market. Different areas have different demographics. An original of the Tetons is worth more in Jackson Hole than anywhere else."

"...And galleries have slit their wrists with their 50% bullshit, thereby doubling everyone's prices (or worse) and so a slow death will be theirs. Notice how many 50% off super duper studio sales are going on EVERYWHERE! this is the result of artists figuring out how to meet the actual market (a thing I've been doing for years!) Everyone is undercutting the galleries, because galleries got greedy."

Shelby Keefe: “If I’m a buyer or wanna be buyer, and I’m really interested in a painting, I contact the artist in an email and inquire. Then the artist has an opportunity to engage with the potential patron and tell a story, help them know a bit about you, and then feel like they have a personal relationship with you. This fosters desire to support the artist. If you just throw a price out there on the web, you shut down that opportunity to have a dialog. (Plus, I personally don’t believe that a qualified patron would just assume they couldn’t afford it if there wasn’t a price listed. I think THAT is an outdated philosophy.)”

Judy Takács: “Places like artsy and galleries and online shops should have prices obvious, because they are there for the purpose of selling. Imagine if the Home Depot website said "contact us for pricing" on drill bits. It lets a potential buyer avoid the embarrassing situation of having something be "out of their price range"…or lets them know that something IS in their price range! For artist websites and facebook pages it may be clumsier to list prices all the time."

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