Internet sales is still in its infancy, but www.apug-gallery.com has a fairly workable solution to get actual prints into the hands of buyers at little risk to the buyer. The website gallery recieves the money from the buyer, holds it, and notifies the photographer of the purchase. The photographer sends the print to the buyer, who if after seeing the print agrees to purchase it will contact the gallery, who then releases the money to the photographer. If the buyer doesn't accept the print, they send it back to the photographer who then notifies the gallery when the print returns, and the buyer gets their money back. They are only out postage...far less than one nights stay at a hotel close to a big city gallery.
Some people though do need their hands held, or get the 'stamp of approval' from a commission driven sales person, or be able to say, "Well, I'll have you know I puchased the print at XYZ Gallery". To be fair though, there's a long history of supportive gallery owners who don't look at their artists like the owner of a feedlot looks at beef.
Still, a 50% commission is a 100% increase over what the artist gets. An artist who chooses Internet sales also wouldn't have to invest all that time and money of continually stocking several galleries with new prints...at their own expense.