Essex & Suffolk


Keys Fine Art Auctioneers are one of the leading provincial auction houses in the UK. They hold regular auctions at their Aylsham salerooms, situated halfway between Norwich and Cromer. Sales include weekly Country Auctions, which usually include up to 2000 lots, to regular sales of antiques, fine art, books and collectables. Established in 1953, Keys Auctioneers have grown over the years from a small livestock market into a local firm with an international reputation.

Arnolds Keys had decided to invest in developing its web presence as the auctioneering sector has experienced significant global growth. A website is one of the prime tools available for provincial auctioneer businesses such as Keys Auctioneers to maximise its growth nationally and internationally through attracting high value items to sell and high value buyers to purchase.

Brand Facts

  • Keys are one of the longest-established firms of Auctioneers in East Anglia.
  • They hold a regular programme of around 150 Fine Art, Antique, General, Commercial and Specialist sales covering the whole auction spectrum.
  • The business started as a small livestock market selling mainly poultry. By the end of the 1950s, these sales had become some of the largest of their type in the country.

Project Facts

  • The provision of a comprehensive and efficient website was essential for Keys Auctioneers to continue to develop.
  • They were looking to expand their online brand both in the UK and overseas and to establish themselves as the ‘go to’ online auctioneers.
Keys Fine Art Auctioneers Website

The Client

Facilitating the sale of art since 1953

Keys had identified that they needed greater web presence and thus needed to make changes to their website so that it reflected the image, consistency and professionalism of their business.

We are working with Keys to significantly grow the business by enhancing their web presence including building a brand new website which includes functionality such as:

  • An archive and ability to search past sales
  • The ability to attach a gallery of images to each lot
  • A permission based mailing list function that can be used to notify customers of new lots relevant to them
  • The ability to bid online for commissioned bids

The Challenge

The integration of the website with Keys’ back office system was integral to the build of the site including the ability to export auction lots from the back office system and then import them to the website through a bulk upload facility.

Keys Fine Art Auctioneers Website

The Results

The design of the website now projects an image of prestige and exclusivity to reflect the stature of the lots of many of the auctions.

We will work with Keys on an ongoing basis, holding quarterly review meetings including website statistics and evolving the website based on the measurement of the website against agreed website goals.

We decided that we should tender the work needed to four web designers. The Mackman Group’s proposal was easily the best received. Overall our experience working with the Mackman Group has been very positive in all regards – we were kept well informed at all stage of the process, all our many queries were met with courtesy and understanding and in terms we could easily comprehend. We now have a superb website that we can manage and update ourselves as well as the expertise at Mackman available to call on when needed. We would recommend their services in the future.

Roy Murphy, Director, Keys Fine Art Auctioneers