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Hiscox Online Art Trade Report 2016

  • Analyst: Anders Petterson
  • Pages: 43
  • Access: Tracker

Despite a decrease in global art auction sales in 2015, the online art market grew an estimated 24% last year.  This indicates that the lower end of the art market could be more resilient to a slowdown than works selling in the mid- to high-end price range.

Old & New:

Hiscox Online Art Platform Ranking shows a healthy mix of traditional and new online players battling for market share in the growing online art market. Investment in digital presence and e-commerce is starting to pay off for Christie’s and Sotheby’s.

Going mobile: 

A number of online art platforms covered in this report have seen significant growth in mobile usage. Although don’t throw out the PC yet, as 81% said they still use a desktop or laptop when buying art online.

Social media: Instagram experienced a significant jump in popularity—from 34% to 48% year-on-year. The same trend was found among younger buyers, where 65% said they used Instagram most frequently for art-related purposes compared to 48% in 2015.

Millennials: 19% made their first ever art purchase online (up from 9% in 2015) highlighting just how important the online art market is for first-time buyers in this age group.

Outlook: 92% of online art buyers expect to buy more or the same amount of art online in the next 12 months.


The online art market has continued to grow strongly (up 24% to $3.27 billion) despite the global art market slowing in 2015.