October 25, 2021
Meredith Blechman

Supply Chain & Fulfillment for the Collectible Economy

If you’ve read any form of news in the past few months, you’ve likely come across the endless headlines about the global supply chain disruption “nightmare”. The topic has become increasingly mainstream because it has affected so many parts of the economy, from businesses of all sizes to nearly every consumer. In recent weeks, the conversation about supply chains has gone into overdrive. These disruptions are poised to wreak havoc on the holiday season, as consumer demand for online goods and services—already at an all-time high—will kick into overdrive.

But while the supply chain chaos has affected the majority of consumer goods, Arta is in a unique situation where purchases of unique goods and collectibles have only been marginally inconvenienced—if at all—by what is going on in the broader global economy, the reasons for which we outline here.

The items are ready to ship

Most mass-produced goods require multiple components and raw materials to be assembled, so if even one of those items is delayed, the finished good can’t be completed. On the flip side, art, antiques, design objects, collectibles, and other one-of-a-kind objects already exist – no factory assembling required.

Single vs. high-volume collection  

Arta works with a broad array of transport providers, ranging from Parcel to Premium (read more about our transport offerings here). Most of the supply chain disruptions related to fulfillment are occurring within Parcel networks. Parcel carriers are limiting bulk pickups from large fulfillment centers, another cause of delays in delivery timelines. By contrast, collectible items are most often being picked up directly from the merchant and in lower volumes by specialized supply chains, limiting exposure to broader fulfillment issues, and when Parcel networks are involved, it’s easier to guarantee collection of low-volume shipments.

Transport is generally by air or road

Consumer goods tend to travel globally via sea containers and have fallen victim to two key factors in the supply chain chaos: limited supply and congested ports. By contrast, one-off shipments of unique and high-value goods tend to be transported via air or truck, minimizing the impact of sea congestion on our supply chain.


For all of these reasons, unique and collectible items are the perfect 2021 holiday gift: they are in stock, ready-to-ship, and unlikely to be burdened by fulfillment issues.  Need some inspiration? Check out the items below.

John Currin, “The Red Shoe” on Artsy

Gina Werfel, “Fragmentary Gaze” on Altamira

Christèle Adedjoumon, “L’oiseau tisserin” on Artland

Tyler Shields, “The Climb” on Artsy

Farnaz Gholami, “Towards the Stairs” on Artland

Marilyn Henrion, “Hudson Yards NYC” on Altamira

Margo Wolowiec, “Alarm” on Artsy

Meredith Blechman

Meredith is a marketer with 15+ years of experience across CPG, ad agency, consumer tech and SaaS. She spent the last 10 years building marketing teams and strategy at early to mid-stage tech startups. Now, she consult for climate-focused companies.

About Arta

We provide end-to-end logistics solutions for merchants and marketplaces worldwide.

We’re continuously evolving our e-commerce infrastructure for the global collectibles industry through automated transaction, fulfillment, and post-purchase technology. Arta's software provides instant shipping and handling quotes for any item type, regardless of size, material, or price point. Our API automates shipping and fulfillment for high-value items, providing a frictionless purchasing experience for our clients’ buyers.

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