By Carolyn Edlund
Getting website traffic is step one. Now, keep those visitors in the loop and coming back. Here are a few tips on increasing engagement with visitors to your art website:
1. Make your Home page inviting with a compelling image of your work and a professional design. Be sure that your website is easily navigated. Frustrated visitors will just click away.
2. Craft your “About” page carefully, because it’s not all about you, it’s also about your website visitor. To keep them reading you need to create “emotional resonance.” Tell your story in an authentic, personal way, in the first person. Include your photo so they feel that they know you. Don’t get caught up in unintelligible artist statements that no one can decipher.
3. Use great images. Here’s where visual artists have a great advantage. Present your work at its best by using professionally taken photographs. After all, you work hard to create your art. Don’t you deserve this?
4. Show your work in situ on your website. This helps the reader to imagine how that art might look in their own home or office. It gives a sense of scale, and can really show off what a beautiful artistic statement your work makes. Room views make it easy to see how your art can enhance their environment. When they get a great preview like an in situ photo, it’s an exciting first step to closing the sale.
5. Capture email addresses. Use a free service like Feedburner, or use MailChimp, FeedBlitz, AWeber or other provider to place an opt-in subscription box on your website. This simple step will help you gather that all-important list of people who are interested in your work.
6. Send out a newsletter to that list. Keeping in touch with your audience helps them to get to know you even better. It can take many contacts before people remember you and are ready to consider a purchase. An occasional email contact will keep your work in front of them.
7. Create a blog on your website. This is optional, but can be a wonderful addition that adds frequent content to enhance each visit to your site. But, if you feel that you can’t keep up with it or don’t care to write, pass on this. An abandoned blog makes you look out of business.
8. Show work in progress, videos of yourself working in the studio, or your technique. Keep it interesting and even educational. The more your audience knows about you and the work you do, they more they will remember you.
9. Links to your social media accounts should be easily seen on your website. Invite people to connect with you. When you gather likes, followers or fans, you can more easily communicate with them without the “intrusion” that they may feel from receiving email. You can also easily install plug-ins on your website that will share your Twitter or Facebook stream.
10. Share your blog and website content on social media – and share other people’s content as well. Part of being an effective networker is helping to promote others. This will come back to you in kind.
See more of Manon Sander’s work on her very inviting website.