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Four of the most common mistakes, people make when selling art on Red Bubble and Imagekind

Updated on September 16, 2010

Imagekind and Red Bubble

Four of the most common mistakes people make when they put artwork on Imagekind and Red Bubble.

Two of the biggest art sharing sites are Imagekind and Red Bubble ; they offer the artist an art sharing site with a free membership where you can share your art and sell your art in print form. They are popular and come up in a search on Google nearly every time you put in a request for art related subjects. They showcase your work nicely and present it well, they also offer options to share the work on Facebook and Twitter and a few others social networking sites which is very useful. So here are a few mistakes to avoid and tips to keep in mind if you want to profile and sell your work on these sites.

One of the first mistakes artists make when they upload their work onto Imagekind or RedBubble , is that their work will sell straight away, because you have reasonable prices and a good range of work offered in quality prints on different paper types and frames if so desired , but this is not the case, and here’s why ; you are one of many millions on these sites , your chances of being found are very slim , even when work is well tagged , you may feel that the promise of sales is an empty promise, with little or no interaction on your posted work, a simple but effective strategy should be put in place in order to get your work in front of your audience.

Mistake number two, post the work and leave , in the hope someone somewhere will stumble upon your artwork and buy a print or two, it wont happen if you don't take the following steps

  • Try to connect with other site users, comment on their work and add your work to as many groups as possible ,and if there is a forum or a discussion add your own comment , this gets others interested in your work and what you have to say. Regarding comments always reply back to someone who comments on your work, just a simple thanks is often all that is needed , it is just common courtesy. you can take a look at their work and often if they like your work you will like their work, you may have a similar aesthetic.
  • Add friends or fan them if you like their work, to add to your contacts and when you upload work , they see your work in recent uploads. Add your ‘link juice’ put all your other site links on your profile ,so people can connect with you on Facebook or Twitter , or see your website.
  • Mistake number three , pay for an account will gaurantee customers-
  • It's a mistake to pay for a professional account before your even become established on the site- Keep your own costs cheap or free! keep all your profiles on the free accounts to begin with, I know artists who pay out for professional accounts and they don’t get much more than a free account, so unless your selling a heap of stuff , keep your costs to a minimum. You would have to sell a huge amount of prints to make any money on these sites. Check the commission , you can adjust it so you make a bit more . You will only feel resentful when you are paying monthly or yearly for your work not to sell or to sell at a loss.
  • Mistake number four- nice artwork, wrong site!
  • A square painting in a round hole- Does your work fit the site profile? A common mistake is to add work onto sites that don't fit your style or niche! be honest , are you photographing your 6 ft sculptures to sit alongside the fluffy kittens from Snuggles , check out the pages of these sites and you can see the niche the site is capturing,would your huge big oil paintings sell from a small photo ?
  • It’s not exclusive , anyone can buy it! If you want to offer exclusivity , then some of these sites can hinder , not help with your art. If you don't want to offer work in print form then you could showcase the work rather than try to sell from these sites.They allow this option on both Red Bubble and Imagekind where you can opt out of selling the work and people just view it.
  • Again consider your market , putting the prices on your work and selling them in prints or on t-shirts and cards might be just what your looking for , so think about your own work and take it from there- if your work fits the site then get it uploaded and use the site to market your work.

Finally from a personal point of view , I prefer Imagekinds choice and quality of paper and prints, although the postage was more expensive than Red Bubble , I felt the print quality was superior to Red Bubble , Red Bubble prints looked very similar to something I would print off the computer in ” best quality” , also Red Bubble took a while to deliver, so if your ordering for a certain time make sure you allow plenty of time for delivery. That could have been a one off experience so if you know better please add your comment?

I like the share option on Imagekind , and Red Bubble; you can directly share on Twitter and Facebook or send your art in an e-mail, very easy and nicely presented.

Red Bubble offers a free website, it’s very simple but it does the job , and it has pay-pal incorporated into the site with a shopping cart, if that suits your work then it’s ideal. Red Bubble also has a Facebook widget that has your art gallery within it and you can post on your Facebook wall. Both sites have helpful sections on marketing your work that are worth reading.

Imagekind have introduced a gallery that you can incorporate into a Facebook page -but this is only available on a professional account.

The only downside of these sites , you feel a bit disconnected from your audience, but as you get friends on these sites you can feel more part of the community and by adding friends and adding contacts you can build up your audience.

So there is Red Bubble and Imagekind , I would recommend them to artists , I would also add; keep it as another site to profile you as an artist ,if you make sales , great , and you can add all the links to your website and social networking sites .

The more sites your work is on the more powerful your online presence will be and the more likely your work will appear when people put in a search for your type of artwork.

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    • profile image

      Tateh 3 years ago

      Thanks very much for your advice. I'm thinking of putting my InKs Gallery art on imagekind and this is really useful. I don't know if you do a link exchange, mine is and I think any artists visiting could use your advice. Thanks again, Tateh

    • profile image

      Marty 3 years ago

      Not tried artflakes but have had fun selling my art with for the UK/European market.

    • peanutroaster profile image

      peanutroaster 6 years ago from New England

      Thanks, I just started with Red Bubble. We'll see how it goes.

    • profile image

      Tina 7 years ago

      has anyone tried for the european market?

    • profile image

      Tina 7 years ago

      has anyone tried for the european market?

    • SELL MY ART profile image

      SELL MY ART 7 years ago from Ireland

      Hi Myinfo411 , yes I have tried fine art America and have actually sold a piece of work from that site, it's seems to be favoured in searches on Google. I think all these sites have a use even if it's just getting your work on as many sites as possible.

      Dolores , it is tough for artists now, and the reason for my articles is that as an artist I had two of my best galleries close down due to a bad recession , so I had no choice but to look for other ways to sell my art and in doing so realised many other artists were in the same boat.

    • Dolores Monet profile image

      Dolores Monet 7 years ago from East Coast, United States

      It's a tough time for artists out there. You've offered some great advise. I imagine you have to build yourself a lot of links for these sites to draw traffic.

    • MyInfo411 profile image

      MyInfo411 7 years ago

      Hi, SELL MY ART, thanks for visiting my earring hub! Just as an FYI, have you tried selling your art on Fine Art America? It's also a great site I've had some success with. And user-friendly. Well, thanks for the informative hub. And you're right about posting art and then it taking time to sell and that you also cannot just post and leave it and expect it to sell right away. Well, good luck with your art and also on hubpages...

    • SELL MY ART profile image

      SELL MY ART 7 years ago from Ireland

      Thanks Nate, I enjoy Imagekind, it's a great site for artists.

    • profile image

      Nate 7 years ago

      Very cool and informative piece! Thanks for the mention and being a part of Imagekind!