No, you can’t create your art website in a day. But you can create it sooner rather than later! Don’t get bogged down and throw up your hands, as so many artists do. Follow these ten tips and get going!
1. Don’t worry. You aren’t aiming for a perfect site! You may not even create a beautiful site or a well-functioning site the first time out. Have as your goal to get a site up. Don’t let perfectionism stop you!
2. Create the bare minimum text for your landing page. Just five or six sentences that clearly, simply, and attractively communicate who you are and what you are selling. Don’t struggle too much with your artist statement, how best to describe yourself, or any of that. Just get some solid sentences created!
3. Pick two or three graphics. Maybe a headshot and two stock shots. Or no headshot, if you have nothing you like, just two or three stock shots. Or, of course, images of your work. Don’t overload the site with either visuals or text, not this first time out. Go for a minimalist look so that you can get finished!
4. Make it absolutely clear how folks are to contact you, both how to be in communication with you and how to acquire your services and/or products. Make this super-clear and super-obvious. This is a site to sell your art, isn’t it? Let people know how to be in touch – don’t be secretive!
5. Pick a website builder. There are many services and templates out there. Quickly do some comparison shopping, find some recommendations, and make a decision. Might you pick the wrong one? Yes! But you must make a decision and give something a try. Get going on this – both on the deciding and the doing!
6. Pick your style. There are countless templates out there and countless options for looks and formats. Pick one! You could spend from here to eternity going back and forth between looks. Don’t do that. Pick a look and live with it, at least for now.
7. Create your website using your six sentences, your three graphics, and your contact information. Build it!
8. Pick your host. Choose some service to host your site, pick an economical one with some good endorsements from users, pay for the service, and get set up!
9. Make it live. Tackle those last details that will allow your site to go live. Don’t worry about all the bells and whistles that your site doesn’t have—this is your first go, not your final, brilliant, I-really-love-it site. Think of it as your practice site or your experimental site—and make it live!
10. Announce it. Tell everybody that your site is up. Be enthusiastic! Don’t apology. Don’t say, “I know it looks terrible.” Don’t say, “Please, tell me everything you hate about it.” Announce it matter-of-factly and enthusiastically. And remember to congratulate yourself! You just did something real. Not perfect—but real.