Create Urgency to Close More Art Sales

by Carolyn Edlund

Shoppers will be more motivated when they feel there is a compelling reason to buy your art or handmade work now.

Use these strategies to create a sense of urgency, encouraging buyers to pull out their wallets and make the commitment to purchase. As an artist, you are in a good position to encourage buyers to take action to avoid missing out on your work.


Limited Quantity


Art by it’s very nature is finite, and not available in unlimited quantities. Encourage buying by highlighting that your work is:


If your work of art is unique, and there is nothing else like it, then clearly there is a single opportunity to make the purchase. After that, it’s gone. Make sure to let shoppers know if you make one-of-a-kind art; this can also add perceived value to the piece you are selling.

Limited edition

You make your creative work in production, or have reproductions made, but have chosen to limit the edition to a fairly small number. Collectors will have to make the commitment now to avoid missing out. This is especially effective if your art is collectible.


Create Urgency in Selling with Special Offers


Create a sense of  urgency by making offers time sensitive. With the clock running, customers must make up their mind before one of these benefits expires:

Special pricing

Are you offering a discount or having a special sale? Set a specific end date, and stick to it. Let your customers know the day the sale will be over, and send a reminder shortly before the cutoff. Everyone likes a sale and this can be strong motivation to buy, but offer discounts infrequently. This will help you avoid the problem of having your regular customers always waiting for the next discount.

Free shipping

Shipping costs annoy just about everyone, and offering free freight as a bonus can incentivize your customers. Free shipping overcomes an objection and helps smooth the purchasing process. When your free shipping offer expires, they will have to pay that expense. (Cover this cost by adding wiggle room in your pricing formula so that you can afford to make these offers.)

Free bonus with purchase

Do you offer a bonus or special gift with a purchase of a particular size? Make it time-sensitive as well and entice shoppers to buy it now.


Create Urgency in Selling with Time Sensitivity


Sometimes deadlines already exist. Use them to help close the sale:

Upcoming holiday

Christmas is coming. Select the last day to purchase, have the work gift-wrapped and drop-shipped to a third party, and state that clearly. This can apply to Valentine’s Day, Mother’s Day, or other holiday as well. If your work is perfect as a gift, advertise this offer or use signage in your retail show booth. Have deadlines figured out ahead of time so that you can accommodate these customers and get purchases to their destinations on time.

Other deadlines

Your conversations with shoppers may lead to information that allows you to set a deadline for their purchase. Perhaps they moving into a new office, and need artwork installed by a certain date. Or maybe they are hosting a party and doing some redecorating to get ready. Does your customer plan to attend an important event and need a spectacular piece of jewelry? Use this information as a motivator. Give the customer a time frame in which to purchase in order to make a prompt delivery, arrange for installation, or complete a commission for a special occasion. Each time you use strategies to create urgency, you have increased your opportunity to close the sale.



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