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Where should I sell my art online?
October 5, 2012 8:38 PM   Subscribe

I want to open an online store where I sell my paintings, and possibly prints. Should I go with Etsy and/or Redbubble?

Soooo.... I'd like to sell my paintings in an online store, and possibly even selling calendars and other prints down the line. Etsy seems to be the most frequently mentioned go-to place for selling traditional art, but Redbubble also seems worth considering, at least in terms of selling prints.

For the past few years, I have a Cafepress store, and the quality is decent, but I have been less than thrilled with their interface. Should I open an Etsy store and/or a Redbubble store? Or should I consider other alternatives? Do you guys have any recommendations, warnings, or experiences you'd like to share in helping me make this decision?
posted by suburbanbeatnik to Media & Arts (13 answers total) 7 users marked this as a favorite
 
I have never heard of Redbubble. I would bet that for every 50 people that have heard of Etsy, there is only one that has heard of Redbubble. Unless Etsy's selling terms are especially onerous, I'd go where the traffic is.
posted by MegoSteve at 9:12 PM on October 5, 2012 [1 favorite]


I don't know a huge amount about either, but Etsy seems to draw more traffic.
posted by Rosengeist at 9:17 PM on October 5, 2012


I buy paintings, prints and photographs online, I have never heard of Redbubble. So I would think Etsy is the place to be.
posted by saradarlin at 9:55 PM on October 5, 2012


I have used Redbubble as a buyer and I like it. Personally, I would go to them to buy art and not to Etsy (which I haven't used to buy art).
posted by heyjude at 10:14 PM on October 5, 2012


Can you not do both?
posted by Darcy McDay at 10:50 PM on October 5, 2012 [1 favorite]


You will be responsible for the printing of all items if you move to Etsy.
posted by These Birds of a Feather at 11:20 PM on October 5, 2012


I've been noticing more art sellers using bigcartel and society 6.

I ordered some stickers once from Redbubble. Given the quality of the stickers, I'm not likely to order anything else, much less an art print, from them.
posted by stefanie at 11:21 PM on October 5, 2012 [1 favorite]


Thanks guys. I think, if I start a store on Etsy, it will be to sell original paintings only. Thanks for reminding me about society 6, Stefanie. I just remembered I have a good friend who sells prints there, and that it would probably suit me well too.
posted by suburbanbeatnik at 11:27 PM on October 5, 2012


Unfortunately Society 6 does not offer calendars as a product option. Redbubble does... and it's hard for me to grok exactly what Bigcartel offers by way of products. (Plus they're a lot more expensive then the other two websites.) Hmmmmm....
posted by suburbanbeatnik at 11:45 PM on October 5, 2012


Big Cartel doesnt offer products, just your own shop front and secure check out. They charge a flat monthly fee, while etsy charges a percentage of each sale. I get stuff printed independently. Financially when starting I think it makes sense to go where the traffic is. Set up a blog/website/portfolio with your own shop (big cartel). As you sell more and more, you can transition to your big cartel shop. Big cartel is also a better deal for more expensive items, esp if they sell. Last time I checked a five-item big cartel site was free -no harm done!

I have never heard of red bubble...
posted by jrobin276 at 3:05 AM on October 6, 2012 [1 favorite]


Ugh. I would have to get my own prints done if I went with Bigcartel? I can't afford that, especially since I have no idea what people are going to buy. I have zero budget for such a thing right now, which is why I'd want to find an outfit that would be a better, more streamlined and more professional version of Cafepress.

I have a website and a blog, of course, and I've had those for years, but right now it just links to my neglected Cafepress store, which is why I want to change to something else.
posted by suburbanbeatnik at 3:28 AM on October 6, 2012


A good friend of mine is an artist. She uses Etsy for the the dolls and original art pieces she makes. For her computer art she uses Redbubble. I think she sent me some prints from Redbubble and I thought they were fine, but I'm not a fine artist.
posted by kathrynm at 4:02 AM on October 6, 2012


Ugh. I would have to get my own prints done if I went with Bigcartel? I can't afford that, especially since I have no idea what people are going to buy.

They're prints. Get them done after you get an order.
posted by yohko at 4:28 PM on October 9, 2012


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