How to set up your new art gallery | GalleryTool

Getting started – How to set up your new art gallery

Are you considering opening an art gallery? Perhaps, you might have already begun working on your art gallery business plan. In this new post, GalleryTool and its experienced team would like to help you with some useful tips on how to get started.

Finding your clients

The most important step is to study your target group before initiating your business. Who are they? What are they most likely to buy? What kind of art would they invest in? And how much would they spend? These are the sorts of questions to ask when defining your key audience. Only start your business when you find enough potential buyers around you: for example, in the circle of your previous business relationships, acquaintances, friends.

Identify your key values

Determining your purpose and benefits can give you extra strength on the market. After carefully examining your competitors, decide which values your business represents: How will your gallery be different from others? Which artists, of what age-group would you like to work with?  What style(s) of art will you want to sell? Can you offer extra services, like free delivery or a VIP club membership, to your clients? All these special characteristics will help you build a successful art gallery.

What art gallery expenses you should calculate with and what resources might you need

Before launching your new gallery, you should take into account the possible resources necessary to guarantee you a smooth start. Having a good website, a storage room, full equipment for logistics and a reliable vehicle could be crucial. You should also bear in mind human resources. How many people will you need to run everything? Perhaps a gallery director, a curator, storage personnel, and a sales-and-marketing expert? Dividing the workload smartly among staff will help you to manage well. Calculating precisely all possible present and future expenses is critical when starting any business. Make sure you do your maths! Art gallery businesses plan for the long-term, working out your costs at least 5 years ahead is a must. Coming up with other ideas for income, apart from selling art, can help you expand your potential profit too.

Clients and partners

Plan ahead to reach your clients. Whether online or offline, you have to make sure you keep in continuous contact. Meeting them at art fairs or exhibition openings may be a more natural way of building your network. Approaching people via emails or the phone can be other forms of showing how important they are to you. While encouraging them to buy regularly will be a challenge, by going the extra mile sending newsletters, building a VIP club, or writing your blog, even inviting them to special viewings at art fairs can help nurture loyal fans. When building your art gallery business, you should surround yourself with valuable partners, like a reliable delivery agent, a framer, and an artwork management software provider. 

At GalleryTool we would like to wish you every success in your future!

Author: Marta Balla

Marta lives and works in Budapest, Hungary. She graduated from the Polytechnic University of Valencia (UPV), Spain. She holds an MA specialized in painting and art theory. She has exhibited in solo and collective shows in Croatia, Hungary, Israel, Mexico, Spain and the US.  She is also involved in curating and social art projects, and has been invited to international conferences to talk about her art and process.  She teaches traditional painting techniques nationally and internationally. She is also an art therapist, using different artistic expressions and storytelling in the therapeutic process. Marta has been practicing aikido, a non-violent Japanese martial art for 15 years. She has been engaged in contact improvisation dance for 3 years which lead her to more exploration in performance art.