Testimonials are powerful statements that get your work taken more seriously. Here’s how to obtain them and how to use them.
Do you have happy clients? Collectors who love your work? Repeat customers? These are all great sources for obtaining testimonials for your art business.
People respond far more to word of mouth than they respond to advertising, and personal recommendations are great forms of social proof that you can use when marketing your artwork.
Testimonials are an excellent way to share those personal recommendations on your website, as well as in other forms of marketing, such as print ads, email newsletters, and direct mail.
How do you get testimonials? Simply ask for them. When a customer has expressed how pleased they are with a commission or a purchase of your art, tell them how much you appreciate their comment. Let them know you are gathering testimonials to use on your website, and ask if they would be willing to write a sentence or two to share how satisfied they are with your work.
You have little to lose. People are usually flattered to be asked, and even if they don’t respond, you merely have to approach another client. Always let the customer know how their testimonial will be used, and ask permission. And be sure to obtain that permission through an email or in a letter so that you have a written record of it.
Sometimes people write long, rambling recommendations that need to be shortened up a bit to make a more impactful testimonial. In that case, simply call or email them and say, “Thank you so much for giving me this recommendation! I need it to be a bit shorter to fit into the space I have, so I’ve summarized it a bit. Would it be fair to say (insert your shortened version here)?” You will probably get a resounding “Yes” in response.
A written testimonial by itself isn’t good enough, though.
You will need to print the testimonial with the name of your client to give it authenticity. Not their initials, but their whole name. If you sold the artwork to a company, their company name would be appropriate here too.
Even better than that would be a testimonial from the client with their name and their photo included next to their quote.
And best of all would be a testimonial with the name of the client, and a photograph of them with the piece of artwork they purchased from you.
Use testimonials on the Home page of your website, or on your About page (see this example). You may even have a separate page on your website specifically for testimonials.
Authentic and honest word-of-mouth testimonials from satisfied customers can go a long way in earning the trust of your website visitors, and help them feel more confident doing business with you.
Need help with your own art website? Check out Artsy Shark’s Website Review Package for more information on getting an evaluation and customized recommendations for your own site.