If you have been making art for a while now and are thinking it's time to share it with the world, then the next step is to work out where. There are many different sales channels available for artists, and I'll share a few with you below.
Galleries - traditionally, artists sell their work through galleries who take care of the business side for them and take a commission of around 40% for doing so. As an artist approaching a gallery for the first time, it is important to do this the right way - by first researching which gallery might be a good fit for your work. Visit the gallery's website to see if they are taking on any new artists at the moment, and if they offer advice on how to do this. Create a professional portfolio and make sure your artist statements and bios are up to date.
Shops - depending on what you make, your work may be more suitable in shops. There are some wonderful and quirky gift shops around and if you feel your work might be a good fit for one, then make an appointment with the owner to find out more. Make sure your website and social media is up to date as they will be looking at these. A shop will also take a commission, but usually a little less than a gallery.
Studio - some artists like to sell their work themselves, directly from their studios. You may have a studio at home which you invite people to, or maybe you rent a space with other artists. You will have to market your work yourself and set up open studio days, but this can work well and there is joy in meeting the people who buy your work! Plus you get to keep 100% of your sales.
Website - if the thought of becoming more of an independent artist appeals to you (where you manage your own business), then you might want to set up a store on your website. You will have to promote and market your work yourself, and handle sales, however it can be very fulfilling to meet the people who love your work (even if online). Some website platforms such as Wix and Squarespace offer the ability to add a store and sell directly. If you have a lot of different products, then look at Shopify as an option.
Social Media - a lot of artists these days sell their work solely from Instagram or Facebook. It is possible these days to add prices, ask for the sale, message your customers privately and organise shipping yourself. If this appeals to you, then have a look at different options out there, and focus on growing your audience. If you are handling your business yourself, you of course keep 100% of sales which makes your business a lot more sustainable!
Get Creative! - there are so many public spaces out there that need art - think about every hotel room in your town or city, cafe, restaurants, bathrooms, corporate buildings, meeting rooms, communal outdoor areas, hospitals, clinic and doctor's surgeries - would your art be a good fit for any of these? You have nothing to lose by researching a few and approaching them!
Whichever sales channels you choose - just one or a combination, make sure your prices are consistent throughout and make sure you deliver great customer service.