Joan K. Smith
Artspan now empowers U.K. artists to easily create and manage their own full-featured, ecommerce-enabled websites.
(Lambertville, NJ September 2011) Artspan (www.artspan.com), the leading U.S.-based provider of template-based websites for artists, artisans, and photographers, is expanding its service into the UK with a dedicated site, www.artspan.co.uk. UK artists will now have access to a competitive tool for easily establishing and maintaining a sophisticated web presence with self-managed marketing components; U.K. consumers will now have an easy means for discovering and purchasing original artwork by regional artists.
While Artspan has long provided a marketing and individualized website platform for artists worldwide, Artspan.co.uk offers member artists a localized presence with full-featured ecommerce options. The move represents the company’s first step in expansion into Europe, as well as the promise of a growing community of connected members. The Artspan team recognizes the value of fostering local connections and a regional market, and continues to develop features with this in mind.
“American and other non-European Artspan members have expressed strong interest in Europe, and European artists desire exposure in the U.S., so for us to launch an aggressive campaign serving not only artists but also galleries and collectors in Europe is a natural move,” said Eric Sparre, Founder and Managing Director of Artspan. “We aim to foster more conversation across geographic lines. That’s how the arts thrive.”
As with the main Artspan site, UK members will design fully-customizable websites through an easy-to-use template system, with a level of features outstripping any competitors. They will have the opportunity to highlight their work via unlimited images, as well as features that include optional personal blog integration, plus e-newsletter and list management tools. With options like Prints-on-Demand and a site-integrated Shopping Cart, casual browsers will always be potential customers.
More than just a marketing tool, Artspan is an interactive community that fosters member growth as artists and self-promoters. Art marketing professionals provide a stream of expert and cutting-edge advice. Specialized services include a help desk, which provides efficient customer service support online or by phone.
Artists in the UK will be among the first to benefit fully from Artspan’s dual nature: Stand-alone domain names will include multiple pages and images search-engine-optimized, as well as social media tools for maintaining an active web presence; at the same time, inclusion in Artspan’s general directories will tie UK members to the Artspan home site portal, top-ranked for the term “contemporary art” by Google and Yahoo. No other artist website provider offers this “best of both worlds” approach.”
Yet the primary advantage to UK artists will be Artspan’s ongoing policy of affordability – £7.95 to £12.95/month – with a free 30 day trial period that will enable each artist the time and personal experience to make the most informed decision.
Founded in 1999 by painter and entrepreneur Eric Sparre, Artspan.com is a major contemporary art destination connecting producers and consumers of contemporary art , featuring close to 4,000 artist and artisan websites in many different categories, including painting, photography, jewelry, and sculpture. Artspan members include artists from around the country and the world. Artspan.com is consistently top-ranked for the term Contemporary Art by Google and Yahoo. Artspan member websites can be managed by anyone – no technical background needed -- and have a variety of features, all at a very competitive price. Artspan is exceptional among online artist communities and providers of template artist websites, in offering artists the best of both worlds: Member artists benefit from being part of a searchable, high-traffic community while maintaining the autonomy of their own URL. Members can also access a wealth of marketing information and, in an age of limited or non-existent customer service, the Artspan Help Desk can be reached by phone or email.
Throughout history, artists have been dependent on dealers and galleries; now they can do their own marketing. It’s a very empowering thing, and it levels the playing field. - Eric Sparre, Managing Director of Artspan, The Wall Street Journal, 6/16/08