How to Set Up an Art Auction on Facebook

How to Set Up a Facebook Auction for Your Paintings (or Crafts)

If you don’t have a Facebook page yet, create a regular Facebook page or fan page.  If you’re just starting out, you’ll have to start building your friends list so they can see your art work and auction as you post it on your timeline (Facebook’s home page).

Start by clicking on the [Photo] button.  Then on [Create an Album].

Upload some pictures of your artwork and give your album a name.  In the description of the photo album, let people know how they can reach you if they want one of your paintings.

There there are the descriptions of each of your paintings.   Include the sizes and the prices of your artwork, such as 30 by 20 canvas, $95 plus shipping.  You can add “Contact me for the shipping rates.”  You can offer free shipping locally, if you want  to.  Create a description for every painting.

You can edit your album description and add more photos anytime.

Now you have a general “Art for Sale” album.

When someone contacts you to purchase a painting, you can send them a PayPal invoice.   If they don’t have a PayPal account, they can use PayPal to pay you by credit card anyway. Or you can make other arrangements for them to send you the money.

From your album, you can regularly share one of your paintings on your Facebook page so your Facebook friends can see it.  Continue to make new friends on Facebook, so that more and more people see your work.  They can  also share your artwork with their friends.  A really good painting can go viral pretty fast.

How to Create the Art Auction

Create a new album called something like “Elaine’s Art Auction.”

Here is a sample of the description wording you can use to explain the terms and how the auction works:

“Write your bid for an item in the comments. Bid must be more than the minimum starting bid and must be more than the previous bid by increments of $5 or more. Bidding ends Friday night {date} at 8pm MST. Items must be paid for via PayPal by Saturday {date} or item will go to the next highest bidder. Free shipping is included (unless otherwise stated) to the US.   International shipping will be required to pay an additional shipping cost.”

Copy one of your paintings into the Art Auction album.   Make sure that the description is correct for that painting.  Add the starting bid amount to the description of the painting. The starting bid is the minimum you’re willing to sell the painting for.

You could also add the terms (above) under the painting you are auctioning off.  Then the viewers get all the information at the same time they are reading the description of the painting.

Save the art auction photo with its description and post it on your Facebook page.

When the auction time has expired, determine the highest bidder by reading through the comments under the painting.

Respond with, “Congrats you’re the winner.  Please message me right away to get your painting.”  Include the person’s name so that they are tagged.  This will sent them a notification so they can message you back.   If they don’t message you, sell the artwork to the next highest bidder.

Share the news of your auction in as many places as you can, such as your Facebook page, in Facebook groups that you belong to and even on your website.

Don’t give up if your first few auctions don’t work.  Add new friends to your list and try other paintings until you are successful.

Don’t forget to plan for upcoming holidays.  Have something ready for Christmas, Valentine’s Day,  Mother’s Day,  Father’s Day and all the special events year round.

Catch ya later.
Gotta go paint something to auction off,



How to Find Local Shops to Display Your Artwork

Shop owners are always looking for something unique to sell to their customers.  There is nothing more unique than your paintings or crafts.  Nobody creates them like you do.

Take your photo album or a few paintings and visit some local gift shops. Show them your work and ask if they would like to carry a painting/craft or two in their store.  Let them choose the items that they think will fit best in their store.  No need to be shy – you are doing you both a favor if they find something you make that their customers will like to buy.  Both you and the shop owner will make money.  It’s a win-win situation.

The store owner or manager will tell you their terms.  A standard consignment agreement is 35% to the store owner and 65% to you.  If they agree to show your stuff, be sure to sign a contract with them and get a copy for your records. Know how often they pay when something sells.

I approached the owner of Kaleidoscope Inspiration in Canon City, Colorado.  She was willing to give my paintings a try.

If you come across a shop owner or manager that doesn’t seem sure about carrying your items, ask them what they are looking for.  They might say, “Something more western” or “Something in a lower price range.”  It’s possible that you can provide them with what they need so don’t be afraid to ask.

Once your items are in their shop, go visit that place them regularly.  If something isn’t moving, offer to replace it with something new.  This way you will discover what that shop’s clientele likes to buy.

Another approach is to paint something that will increase the chances of appealing to a store owner.  For example, if there is a bike shop in town, paint a bike rider with a local scene in the background.  It could be mountains, the beach or a famous local landmark.  Then approach the bike shop owner and ask if he would consign your painting in his shop.

Put yourself in the shoes of his clientele.  If someone’s love is bike riding, wouldn’t he or she love to have an original painting or craft that displays his interest?  And if there is something local included in the painting, where else could they buy something like that?  Possibly no place but right there in that shop!

Expand this thinking to other hobbies and interests – the archery shop, the pool hall or the golf shop.  Even bookshops, restaurants and wine shops.  The possibilities are endless.