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2017 Hiscox Online Art Trade Report

The fifth annual Hiscox Online Art Trade Report, published in late April, showed that the online art market is still growing, despite increasing competition amongst online platforms and further consolidation inevitable.

Antiques News - Hiscox Online Art Trade Report 2017

The report predicted that, based on the current growth trajectory, the value of the online art market could reach $9.14 billion by 2022.

The top five findings from the 2017 Hiscox Art Trade report: 

- Online art market sales reach $3.75 billion – up 15%.

- Based on current growth – the report predicts the online art market to reach $9.14 billion by 2022.

- Instagram takes over Facebook as the preferred social media platforms for consumers to find and buy art. Just over half of art galleries surveyed said they find Instagram a more efficient marketing tool than Facebook

- Traditional art businesses dominate online due to their bricks and mortar reputation. Online auctions Sotheby’s, Christie’s and Heritage Auctions generated combined online sales of $720million in 2016, accounting for 19% of the online art market.

- The conversion of online art buyers remains static for the third consecutive year, signalling that the online art market could be struggling to convert sufficient numbers of hesitant art buyers.

Robert Read, Head of Art and Private Clients at Hiscox, commented: “The online art market has continued to grow despite the backdrop of a slowing global art market. Established global brands such as Sotheby’s and Christies are starting to dominate The Hiscox Online Art Sales Platform Ranking and appear to be getting to grips with the challenge of transforming a bricks and mortar business into a multimedia business.

“Dealers continue to struggle online, though maybe they are making enough elsewhere.  None of us know for sure in the gloriously opaque art market, but my bet is that the temptation to bury your head in the sand when you are not tech savvy is all too tempting.

“I have talked many times about the long-awaited consolidation in the online art market, which is still yet to happen – with the notable exception of the marriage and subsequent separation of Paddle 8 and Auctionata.  We all know that consolidation will happen – even our survey of those managing the online platforms show that a massive 86% expect more consolidation. What we don’t know is when, and who is going to end up on top.”

To find out more, read the full report at Hiscox Online Art Trade Report

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