Taking a week off from blogging and worrying about search engines.
I had a minor breakthrough this past week. For a month I’ve been posting on Pinterest, making new boards and filling them up with my own work, work I’ve found on the internet, and repins. At best, the original work was showing daily impression rates in the low tens. Then I posted a series of 36 ballerina sketches from a motion study. After a couple of days, several of them rocketed up into the tens of thousands of daily average impressions. My analytics overview on Pinterest showed a maximum of 352,000 impressions. Click thru rate on these was abysmal, but they were not in any way set up to maximize click thru rates. Funny thing about Pinterest analytics, it’s still showing me daily click thru rates of tens of thousands on several of the ballerina images, but the analytics overview is showing my overall daily impressions in the high hundreds. It’s just another damn thing I’ll have to figure out by digging through the tons of misinformation on the internet.
My other work this week has been on bulking out a RedBubble account. It has not proven too difficult to find little niches in what’s offered on Redbubble and finding some artwork in the public domain to fit the bill. It certainly not the goal to sell coffee cups with illustrations from 1890s on them, but it does allow me to add galleries and series and hundreds of items with minimal effort. This is really just to make the account bigger and increase the chances of someone finding it through a long tailed search. I am now convinced that I can use Pinterest to get some traffic to items I have on RedBubble.
My research on chasing commission work is on hold for a week or two for now.
I’ve started improving the website. Now that I’m convinced I can get traffic to the site, I look at it and think it’s not capable of holding on to any traffic. I’m changing it to have a face on it, to be three levels deep and as broad as I can make it within the limits of original artwork. I’m concentrating on making the landing page load faster and be better optimized for search engines. I’m organizing the artwork into galleries with a thumbnail on the landing page, the thumbnails lead to gallery pages with fast loading thumbnails of each work which lead to the third level having a single image with a link to purchase prints.
I also need to improve on the write up for each work. What’s there now does not evoke any emotion. It has no punch. All purchases have an emotional component and artwork especially so. I’ll have to evoke emotion not only with the artwork, but with the pitch written under it.
Next week, I'll hopefully get back to chasing online commission work and begin the process of chasing local work.
Something I haven’t mentioned yet. Time.
My time frame for this project is two years. In two years I expect to be selling artwork regularly. I hope for four figures a month. I am not going to be tragically disappointed if the figures are still in the hundreds per month.
In the mean time, I set smaller goals. I met the goal of ranking in the results for a Google search of Anastasia Overton very quickly. I filled the first page of results in a week. The next search term I’m going after is getting one result on the first page of a search for schizophrenic artist or schizophrenic art or schizophrenic painter. Just one first page result. I don’t really have a time frame for that one, because I’m not altogether certain yet what it’s going to take to get there. Well, actually, I have already sort of met that one on Bing. I got permission to pin to a Pinterest board that comes up fifth for ‘schizophrenic art’.
The next intermediate goal is to sell something on one of the print on demand sites. Anything, even a sticker, will fulfill the goal. It will be an exercise in driving traffic to a specific product, or creating a product specifically to sell in some under served niche.
A longer term goal will be to get some exclusive press coverage in two newpapers of record in two states. This is what it takes to make an article in Wikipedia stick.
With that said, I’m feeling stuck. I’m building a social network dedicated to just simply increasing awareness of Anastasia Overton, Artist. That’s pretty much mechanical repetition now; search for some new followers every day, post something of interest every week, repeat, repeat, repeat.
I’m uploading all my past work and everything I’m doing on print on demand sites with no hope of any of it ever being seen. None of it is targeted to a specific niche, so there’s nothing in the keywords or description that will bring it up in a site search. At least not a site search anyone is likely to type in.
Making a series of watercolors to fill some niche in the print on demand market is proving to be difficult. The theory of filling a niche to sell bits and bobs is really much easier to use public domain art work and manipulate it to fit the bill.