About Primer

Primer is a cloud-based solution that helps art galleries, artists, collectors, and non-profit organizations streamline processes related to sales, inventory tracking, transaction monitoring, and more on a centralized platform. It enables staff members to create product profiles with details, such as images, names, dimensions, authentication certifications, and other relevant notes.

Primer allows team members to maintain a client database with information, such as phone, email, past offers, sales history, and other interactions. It lets supervisors manage and track transactions with billing addresses, shipping addresses, payment currency, tax, fees, and commissions, among other information. Additionally, it lets employees sort inventory data, delete logs, creat...


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10 Reviews of Primer

Average User Ratings

Overall

5 / 5 stars

Ease-of-use

5.0

Value for money

5.0

Customer support

5.0

Functionality

5.0

Ratings Snapshot

5 stars

(10)

10

4 stars

(0)

0

3 stars

(0)

0

2 stars

(0)

0

1 stars

(0)

0

Likelihood to Recommend

Not likely

Very likely

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June 2020

Rick from Rick Wester Fine Art

Company Size: 2-10 employees

Industry: Fine Art

Time Used: More than 2 years

Review Source: Capterra


Ease-of-use

5.0

Value for money

5.0

Customer support

5.0

Functionality

5.0

June 2020

Designed by a gallery owner, for galleries

First and foremost, the client service is tremendous. It would seem that they are on it 24/7. Explanations and fixes are dealt with practically immediately. I feel like Primer cares deeply about our experience with the product and they act on that. We are extremely pleased with the architecture of the interface - it's simplicity and functioning belie a complex software that evens out the playing field with our competitors in the business. The introduction of new features and refinement of established ones seems ongoing and perfect.

Pros

As a daily user of Primer I am particularly pleased with its ease of use. As a relational database it makes accessing and searching for information to create transactions extremely simple. Invoices, offers to clients, loans, consignments in and out, exhibition checklists are all intuitive and take very little time to create. The speed with which it takes to output necessary forms and reports is a lifesaver. My previous inventory system was a bespoken application which I included barcoding for inventory control and labeling in. Primer's willingness to integrate barcoding was essential to my decision to switch. The recent addition of online viewing rooms - one of the most widely used advancements in the gallery industry with the onset of the pandemic - was swift and very effective. We have used it successfully since the first release of it. I willingly agreed to work with the beta version of it and it is nearly perfect. The online hosting and automatic upgrades to the most recent releases of FMP are worth the price of admission alone.

Cons

There is very little to Primer that I am critical of. FMP is not great at word processing and there are a few areas where adjusting text could make it a little smoother perhaps. Sometimes the syntax used to describe functions is a little cloudy but these are hardly anything more than idiosyncratic details that most users probably wouldn't even notice. I wish there was a PDF download function to the online viewing rooms because some of my clients like to keep records of the works offered but I am sure that will come soon enough

Reasons for Choosing Primer

I particularly liked that upgrades and tech support were included in the fee. Others seemed to universally charge for them or limited the access to tech support. Primer was also willing to integrate barcodes in the inventory module, which was both essential for our work flow but also showed a real interest in our needs and business. While some had features the Primer lacks, they were not deal breakers. The fact that it is FMP based makes it attractive so that we are not caught up in a proprietary software that cannot be accessed with other systems. Some of the out of the box solutions were woefully lacking in certain features and came about as an afterthought to their original functions. Primer is about inventory control, client contact and communication.

Reasons for Switching to Primer

The main reason I switched was that [SENSITIVE CONTENT HIDDEN] was a gallery owner who intrinsically understood what we needed from an inventory system and CMS. Also, the features that Primer offered would have been prohibitively expensive to develop on our own and at the time we were approached I was already considering a switch.

July 2020

Sacha from Sacha Baumann

Company Size: 1 employee

Industry: Arts and Crafts

Time Used: More than 2 years

Review Source: Capterra


Ease-of-use

5.0

Value for money

5.0

Customer support

5.0

Functionality

5.0

July 2020

Great for studios, artists, and galleries alike

Intuitive design, ease-of-use, superb customer service, and their quick help desk response time are the standouts of Primer. I have created archives for three different art studios as well as used the platform for a commercial gallery. Artists often ask my advice for what database to use for tracking inventory and invoicing and I always recommend Primer. Also, I have seen artists become more involved in the care of their archive by the very act of creating one.

Pros

I love how all of the data can be tagged to relate with one another. This makes tracking collectors, works, collections, invoicing, shipping, and exhibitions seamless and creates a robust history of interactions between all of these categories (and more). Quickly making .pdfs for offer letters and checklists for shows is a huge plus.

Cons

I can't think of anything that is not a positive with the database or the service.

Reasons for Choosing Primer

Price, usability, sophistication, customer service. For artist's studios when we are discussing which database to use I often will mention that many galleries use the platform, so there is an immediate shorthand between the studio and galleries.

Reasons for Switching to Primer

Primer is by and far more sophisticated and robust.

September 2020

Elsa from Cooper Cole

Company Size: 2-10 employees

Industry: Arts and Crafts

Time Used: More than 2 years

Review Source: Capterra


Ease-of-use

5.0

Value for money

5.0

Customer support

5.0

Functionality

5.0

September 2020

Perfectly designed for a gallery

Pros

Primer is a fantastic tool to manage our inventory and our contacts. It provides all the functions a gallery can need. We can create all types of transactions and presentations including online viewing rooms and payments to artists. It's complete and easy to use. What I like the most with Primer is that each new version of it is better than the previous one. It keeps improving based on our feedbacks. It suits our gallery needs perfectly and the customer service is amazing!

Cons

Primer is so complete, that there are several functions that I haven't explored yet. The only thing that bothers me sometimes is the word processing when creating the PDF of a transaction. There is not so much flexibility around that but I'm sure it will improve soon!

October 2020

Claire from Claire Carino Contemporary

Company Size: 1 employee

Industry: Arts and Crafts

Time Used: Less than 2 years

Review Source: Capterra


Ease-of-use

5.0

Value for money

5.0

Customer support

5.0

Functionality

5.0

October 2020

Amazing Software Has Revolutionized the Way I Run My Business

The customer service has been exceptional. While I don’t have to get in touch too often given how straight forward their software is, whenever I have a question pop up, someone is always available to answer my question thoughtfully and thoroughly.

Pros

The ease and functionality of Primer is by far the most valuable asset to me. I am not particularly savvy in complicated database software and I find Primer to be efficient, detailed and intuitive. Additionally, given the circumstances we are facing today and that much of my work is now being done remotely, I am given great peace of mind knowing any and all information about my business, clients and inventory is a click away.

Cons

I have absolutely nothing negative to say about this software- it has revolutionized my business and how I run it. It has enabled me to work smarter, not harder.

Reasons for Choosing Primer

Initially, it was the team behind Primer that gave me considerable confidence in the software. Once I signed on and started using Primer, I was blown away by the detail and consideration that was put in to its development. It was only after I started using Primer that I realized my previous database software was missing major functions that I now am using everyday as a result of the switch.

September 2020

Simon from Cooper Cole Gallery Inc.

Company Size: 2-10 employees

Industry: Arts and Crafts

Time Used: More than 2 years

Review Source: Capterra


Ease-of-use

5.0

Value for money

5.0

Customer support

5.0

Functionality

5.0

September 2020

AWESOME SOFTWARE!!

A+

Pros

This software makes our lives so much easier! It has a clean design and is very intuitive. Primer offers a lot of instructional videos which is helpful for training new users. The developers have implemented our suggestions to make it even better for our business! How cool!

Cons

Honestly nothing. Using this software is great.

Reasons for Switching to Primer

Because Artsystems is trash

June 2020

Carolyn from Tri-Star Arts

Company Size: 2-10 employees

Industry: Fine Art

Time Used: Less than 2 years

Review Source: Capterra


Ease-of-use

5.0

Value for money

5.0

Customer support

5.0

Functionality

5.0

June 2020

Primer helps brings art and people together through detailed, innovative technology

Overall, I am very impressed with Primer and all its capabilities. There are a multitude of helpful functions, but the platform works well if you're only using a handful of it's many customizable benefits. It's works well for a team since many different kinds of staff members can interact with it on different levels.

Pros

I love the simple design and the options for expansion and more details depending on need. I also enjoy how customizable Primer is. It's a flexible, tailored design for many different kinds of art businesses, art non-profits and artists.

Cons

Once, I encountered an issue with sorting, but tech support fixed it right away.

Reasons for Choosing Primer

It's made by people who have decades of experience in the art world, in partnership with innovative tech design.

Reasons for Switching to Primer

The other program we were using was too clunky/ slow and it was not easy to see a lot of information on the screen at once. With Primer, we can easily sort and see many entries at once to get an overall view of list or tasks.

August 2020

Zachary from ZS Gallery & Marvin Gardens Gallery

Company Size: 2-10 employees

Industry: Arts and Crafts

Time Used: More than 2 years

Review Source: Capterra


Ease-of-use

4.0

Customer support

5.0

Functionality

5.0

August 2020

Manage a gallery’s many moving parts with ease and efficiency

Pros

Primer effectively consolidates the many facets of running an art gallery into one master hub. As a gallery assistant I worked for multiple small galleries using Primer, and it allowed me to stay on top of everything from managing inventory, to preparing documents for exhibitions and loans, to keeping track of contacts and gallery visitors.

Cons

Sometimes the interface feels a touch clunky, but I owe this more to to the FileMaker platform itself

September 2020

Angela from HMG

Company Size: 2-10 employees

Industry: Arts and Crafts

Time Used: More than 2 years

Review Source: Capterra


Ease-of-use

5.0

Value for money

5.0

Customer support

5.0

Functionality

5.0

September 2020

Wonderful and easy to use software

Pros

A brilliant and easy to use inventory system and data base with excellent customer support and intuitive updates that reflect the user's evolving needs. With clean and clear design and a plethora of useful tools to support in sales, archiving, and exhibition building we couldn't ask for better technology to assist with gallery administration.

Cons

There are no cons we have encountered so far.

May 2021

Jayne from JDJ

Company Size: 1 employee

Industry: Arts and Crafts

Time Used: Less than 6 months

Review Source: Capterra


Ease-of-use

4.0

Value for money

4.0

Customer support

5.0

Functionality

5.0

May 2021

Worth it!

Pros

This is hands down the best CMS system I've ever used in my 20 years of experience. Its functionality has absolutely saved me time and money--it makes certain types of presentations and reports that I would have previously needed to do separately. The software can do very complex searches easily, which is useful and time saving. Whenever I need help, the team is immediately responsive.

Cons

Some functions necessitate a few steps that don't always feel intuitive. There are a few forms that I wish were more editable.

Reasons for Switching to Primer

I wasn't necessarily looking to replace my existing CMS but I was so impressed with the functionality of Primer that I made the switch.

May 2020

Damian from Stamer Arts

Company Size: 2-10 employees

Industry: Fine Art

Time Used: Less than 12 months

Review Source: Capterra


Ease-of-use

5.0

Functionality

5.0

May 2020

Perfect for Artists

The customer service and response to individualized questions has been outstanding. We had a big transfer of data from our previous software and the Primer team was very helpful in making it a smooth transition. They also continue to add services and options to adapt to an ever-changing art world.

Pros

I love the ease with which I can create PDF proposals to share my work in a professional way. This has saved many hours of time so I can focus on painting. My studio manager uses this software the most. He especially appreciates the ability to track transactions, loans, and sales to make sure we have a detailed history on every artwork.

Cons

I have not encountered any cons with this product.