I'm so excited! I just signed up for an ArtFire Pro account and opted in for this great new deal they are offering for a very limited time! It is just $5.95 a month for life!! (of course, after the first month you can cancel at any time) This charge is all that you pay for a Pro account and there are tons of perks...TONS!! There are no listing fees and no final value fees when an items sells. No matter how many items you list or how much you sell. They are getting ready to exit Beta and want to do so with a Bang! Their normal monthly subscription fee is $15.95 and even this is a good deal but $5.95....well, I just couldn't pass it up! This special deal is contingent upon a minimum of 20,000 participants signing up.....and they are well on their way! This opting in period is open for an undisclosed period of time and they have set the maximum number of available spots to 50,000 so I would check it out ASAP!
Here is a link to the details www.artfire.com/groupdeal
I won't close my Etsy shop, I do love it there so much but this may be an excellent way to get more exposure and more sales! Depending on how I do at ArtFire, it may become my main selling venue. Time will tell. :)
Anyone else have any experience with ArtFire? I had the basic free account and put one or two items in there last year and got nada....no sales and no exposure to speak of but to be fair I didn't really even give it a fair try. I didn't promote it at all. I read many blogs on ArtFire vs Etsy and there are pros and cons for both. At first I was put off by the monthly subscription fee until I realized that this is all you pay...no more! I took a look at the fees I have paying Etsy each month and realized that I'd SAVE a lot of money by switching.
I've built a pretty good customer base on Etsy and I haven't had one bad experience there (just minor frustrations) but sales are S....L...O...W...right now and maybe the added exposure will help. They also automatically upload your items to Google Base on ArtFire which is wonderful for me because I struggled with that on Etsy where you have to upload them yourself. I did this successfully with step by step instructions on Etsy but then Google Base 'disqualified' my items and I could not figure out why. I found out that they don't allow certain words (such as 'Free') so I tried to eliminate that word from all of my listing titles (I had 'free shipping' in some titles) but it didn't change anything. I can't remember what else I tried but it was all to no avail and I gave up. I have four items in my ArtFire studio now and when I completed one listing a warning popped up telling me that Google Base did not allow the words 'vine' (how odd!) and 'strip' so I removed those words and all was hunky dorey. Wow! I never would have known that those two seemingly innocent words would throw it out of Google base. :) I guess I understand strip...perhaps the 'adult' definition of this, but why the word 'vine' for heaven's sake LOL!
Anyhoo, if you are selling your art and spending way too much money you should check this out...woohoo!
I've been working on a few new things since I last blogged.
First, I tried mounting some of my polymer clay ACEO on gallery wrapped canvas. I painted the canvas with colors and designs to compliment the polymer clay piece. It was well received on deviantART where I have a gallery but I haven't sold them yet.
Secondly, I make art tiles of polymer clay (I'll include an image or two here) and I have been thinking about how I can 'dress' them up a bit and offer them as ready to hang wall art. I made one for a co-worker and she loved it and bought a shadow box and some fancy papers made for scrapbooking and mounted it in this frame with some of the fancy papers behind it and it looked fabulous! I was so impressed, she and her husband worked on it together and they did a great job. Her total cost to do this was about $12 but the added value was incredible. Well.....guess what I bought last weekend?....you guessed it! Shadow boxes and fancy papers LOL! I can't wait to dress up a few of my tiles this way.
What I did for her was really cool. She saw some of my work and really liked the way I included trinkets and such in my tiles and ACEO. She wanted to do something special for her daughter's birthday and asked if she could bring in some of her old jewelry and her Mother's jewelry and some odd bits of other things that had special meaning and arrange them artfully on a tile. She gave me an idea of her daughter's taste and the colors in her house and I went to work. Now I have orders from others to make one for them! I am thinking of offering them to the general public but I have to think about this as they would be sending me precious things that may not be expensive but are priceless if you know what I mean.