The terrestrial chapter of the Circumpolar Biodiversity Monitoring Programme (CBMP) has the potential to bring international multi-taxon, long-term monitoring together, but detailed fundamental species information for Arctic arthropods lags far behind that for vertebrates and plants. In this paper, we demonstrate this major challenge to the CBMP by focussing on spiders (Order: Araneae) as an example group. We collate available circumpolar data on the distribution of spiders and highlight the current monitoring opportunities and identify the key knowledge gaps to address before monitoring can become efficient. We found spider data to be more complete than data for other taxa, but still variable in quality and availability between Arctic regions, highlighting the need for greater international co-operation for baseline studies and data sharing. There is also a dearth of long-term datasets for spiders and other arthropod groups from which to assess status and trends of biodiversity. Therefore, baseline studies should be conducted at all monitoring stations and we make recommendations for the development of the CBMP in relation to terrestrial arthropods more generally.