If you think that in order to sell paintings, photographs and other handcrafted items you need to be a famous artist and take part in exhibitions, then you should know this is no longer the case. A whole slew of artists has emerged who exclusively use Instagram and a simple website to sell their work. Find out what you need to do to sell art and handmade items online on IG.
Instagram for artists: guide to selling your creativity online (from 0 to stable sales in a few weeks)

There are many platforms for selling art online, for example, Etsy, Saatchi, Artsy, etc. But only Instagram allows you not only to showcase your work but also to promote your personality through more intimate content and 24/7 direct communication with the audience. This feature gives Instagram a distinct advantage if you choose between promotion options.


An important tip for aspiring artists who want to promote their Instagram: don't spray your artwork across multiple platforms and multiple social networks. It is much more vital and effective to focus on one channel than to put your eggs in numerous baskets. If you stay focused on Instagram promotion only, you’ll notice significant growth even with minimal investment and energy costs.

Benefits of Instagram for selling artwork:

  1. Users are attracted to visual content. The Instagram audience is used to reacting to visuals and you will get success and sales even without any experience or expenses.
  2. Healthy market. There are lots of Instagram-based galleries and feature accounts already in this niche. IG is getting similar to the market where independent galleries, artists, and collectors are spending hours daily. Followers of a certain gallery might become your potential buyers because they are looking for this particular style. This means that the only thing you need to do is to get exposed to these buyers – and I’ll show you how below.
  3. Tons of art-dedicated hashtags. As soon as you begin to explore art hashtags for your creative account, you will understand that there are a huge number of them. This means, your works can be easily found free of charge within this platform. Also, a lot of Instagram-based local contests are launching regularly to support artists. You just need to know these hashtags to get into a hashtag gallery – for example, #artsupportpledge


  1. Instagram checkout function. Thanks to Instagram checkout, you can sell directly without an additional website. Instagram has made it simple to purchase right from the gallery.


Thus, Instagram is becoming an independent art market where creative people can sell their physical and digital works faster than anywhere else. It's a powerful social medium to build a personal brand as an artist, not only to accelerate sales.

How to sell art on Instagram: promote your works without managers

There are at least six working tricks that will help boost your creative account from zero subscribers to the first sale in just a few weeks. So be patient, upload the first 12 posts and follow the next instructions.

#1 HASHTAGS ARE ABOVE ALL

The very first, simplest, and free way to show your work to a large number of people and potential buyers is by using tags. As I mentioned, Instagram lists a myriad of tags connected to art, styles, handmade, galleries, and niche contests. For this, it is extremely important at the first stage to select tags for your publications that fit the niche of your work.



Therefore, when you are just uploading the first 12 posts, be sure to add the 30 allowed hashtags by which real buyers or fans of your creativity can find you. In the article The only hashtag strategy that boosts your Instagram reach in 2020 + myth buster you will learn step by step how to discover tags through the Inflact Hashtag Generator.

With the Generator, you don't have to search for hashtags manually through the app. They cannot be copied there. Just enter a few keywords and the tool will offer you tons of tag ideas that users often use together based on Instagram suggestions.

#2 PROMOTION TOOLS WILL ATTRACT BUYERS AUTOMATICALLY

With the help of a smart tool, you can search for buyers and drive them to your account even when you are not using the app. How can you find people who are interested in your works without having to visit thousands of galleries and competitors’ followers manually?

You can use the Inflact Promo Mode as a time-saving alternative for fast-track growth. This is a smart system that will interact with accounts that you designate as targets. For this you just need to do a few things:

  • Find accounts of competitors, galleries that work in your style. It’s simpler to try the Inflact User Search tool where you can find accounts by specific categories or just by keywords indicated in the search bar. For example, you can type the word “gallery” and you will be given all the accounts that are in the database. With the help of the User Search, you can create lists of the accounts that suit you and download the table. From this spreadsheet, you can copy the column with nicknames and paste them into the Promo Module.
  • Set up a target in the Promo Module. Just copy the hashtags you found in the Generator and paste them into the Promo Module settings. Starting now the system will engage with followers of the mentioned accounts and people who apply the mentioned hashtags. It’s just what you need – the audience interested in your works.



If you've just started selling your work on Instagram, be sure to check the Beginner Guide.

#3 CONNECT WITH FEATURE ACCOUNTS AND INSTAGRAM GALLERIES

When you’ve got your first followers, it’s time to get exposed to a larger audience. On Instagram it’s simpler to do than in real life – you just need to contact large galleries or features accounts to post some of your works. Some account managers will likely start reaching out to you by themselves.

By promoting this way, you will get extra traffic and mentions by larger accounts. When you get tagged by numerous big accounts, the Instagram algorithm will promote you better and show more of your new posts to the followers of these accounts and on Explore.

#4 NURTURE YOUR AUDIENCE VIA DIRECT COMMUNICATION

After the previous promotional activities, you will likely start selling, or at least people will show interest in your works. But it’s essential not just to post regularly but to stay connected with your audience in a more private and friendly way – for example in Direct messages.

Remember that repeat purchases will more likely increase your income than constantly pursuing new potential clients. People who liked your masterpieces once may want to buy more and more from you. That’s why you need to think about purchase follow-up messages in DM, though you shouldn’t be too active and intrusive.

As an artist you might not feel comfortable to stay online 24/7 if you manage the account on your own – you need time to create. That’s why the Direct Module by Inflact is the right tool that will help you to automate the communication process. By using it, you’ll be able to:

  • Set auto-reactions and replies in DM. Showcase your attention to your followers without actually being online – simply save the prefabricated replies and reactions. Iflact will respond to stories reactions, mentions, and messages by keywords with customized texts.
  • Curate and categorize buyers, galleries, collectors. In Direct Module you will be able to make notes about every person from your chats. Keep records of what they asked and what they ordered to stay organized. Also, you can visualize chats via boards to define each audience group.
  • Send bulk DMs. It’s possible to reach out to all your followers at once without manually copying messages for each. Connect with all of them when you have an important announcement with bulk messages.

#5 ADS WILL HELP YOU SELL MORE

This means of promoting your art on Instagram is effective but I suggest trying it last. Firstly, you need to gather some audience and activity on your account and you can do this free of charge with consistent posting and hashtags. It’s not a good practice to set ads for an account with 0 followers – people may be cautious to buy from some unknown and untrusted source.

Read our comprehensive Ads Guide to become a pro in 15 minutes.

The set of Inflact tools will help you swing your account from scratch to the first sale in just a couple of weeks. Sure, you could do all this manually, but you may spend much more time and the results you are looking for will take longer.