Writing is becoming very popular, especially with business owners that may know how to run their own business but are not writers. With the invention of the internet, there are numerous opportunities for even a beginner writer. There are many freelance jobs online; a good search will reveal these. The ever growing number of websites online need an ever increasing amount of content to improve them, making now one of the best times in history to be a freelance writer when it comes to work availability.
When starting your search for an online job, the first key point is to get to know the market well. There are millions of individuals working from their home offices and making decent money online. As a writer, there is a great chance to make money online. If you want to be one of them, you might ask…
“But how should I start?”
In the following tutorial I will try to help you with some good advice on where to search, how to apply, how to get paid and what to expect during your job.
And why do I help?
Because I do know how attractive it sounds to earn money wearing your favorite pyjamas or track pants from the comfort of your home office.
There are a lot of people with good writing skills, but they don’t take time to earn money from it. Being a writer is a normal and legitimate job just like any other. It requires time, passion and dedication. If you really want to make money by writing, you should take it seriously and be professional. Being a writer can be considered a career. The more experience you have, the easier it will be to make money. Set the goals you are willing to fight for and take the first steps.
Guide for a beginner
As an absolute beginner, some guidelines need to be followed to ensure a good chance of being successful as a writer. Freelance writing doesn’t necessarily result in big paydays in the beginning. If you have a regular job, do your writing on the side, in the evenings or on the weekends until you can build up enough clients to support your financial needs.
Develop a relationship with other freelance writers. They can be found on the internet by simply posting on Facebook, LinkedIn and the like. Experienced freelancers can be a big help to you if questions come up. Generally, for you to stand out from the crowd you need to be unique.
Here are some important characteristics that you need to adopt for best results:
1. Having a strong portfolio
You must prove your skills in the marketplace. If you want to get hired, you will need to showcase your work. You will have to convince business owners that you can produce quality content. Companies are looking for sincere content marketers who can engage their audience whilst selling products. Content is the brand voice and content marketing strategies play a great part in brand development.
2. Writing a good profile
As I have mentioned before, native English writers may have higher chances to get hired than foreigners. But having a well-constructed profile increases your chances of getting hired, even if you are not a native English writer.
Your profile should contain all of your fields of interest, previous experience in writing and additional skills you have picked up. For translating-type writing jobs, you may need a language certificate. Non-native English writers should be aware of the fact that there are thousands of native English writers who are actually your competitors. If this is the case, make sure you include something special about you that highlights your experience and capabilities.
Make sure that you know enough about the basic roles of such a job. You should also be aware of the expected payment for such jobs. You definitely should not ask for an inappropriately high or low salary. This error would make an impression of being unexperienced.
3. Meeting deadlines
In the online publishing world, deadlines have significant importance. You need to keep your clients happy in order to get a continual flow of work. If you are self-motivated, and you have the winner spirit, then freelance writing will be a great career for you.
4. Profit and productivity
As a freelance copywriter, how can you give the best value to your clients? Your content can help your customers in two ways. You can either boost their profits, or you can enhance their productivity. As copywriters, we are either writing for busy executives, or we are publishing content on our client’s blog. You can increase business revenue by selling products and you can save time by doing the research on different technical topics.
5. Being the most competent
You do not have to be the cheapest writer in the marketplace, but you must provide exceptional writing services. When your clients hire you, they have a limited budget. You must understand their budget limits while understanding their business objectives. Your services must be cost-effective for your clients.
6. Always following instructions
Copywriting is all about writing content according to the requirements. Pay attention to the details. It is your job to understand the business criteria. Write down a business mission statement. Explain their objectives. If you are writing a product description, study every detail. Ensure that you indeed have the ability to follow instructions. Remember, great leaders are also great followers.
7. Being honest and smart
In this field, just like any other form of business, there is the pretty, the good and the nasty, and a person looking to be getting the sweetest of deals, he would have to make money by writing for the best websites. Not only will these websites offer you with the best remuneration but will also introduce you to the plethora of knowledge waiting to be devoured by someone, and you can choose to be that someone. As humans, don’t we want to be powerful? Know more than others? I know we want to, we all want to. In the light of today, smart is the new sexy and smartest thing to do is to be part of this modern work culture.
8. Being professional
As you are applying for a totally legitimate job, you need to be as professional as when applying for any other jobs (that you would do in a formal dress and not in your pajamas).
When sending your written articles to your employer, make sure you don’t have any spelling mistakes. A complete spell-check should always be done before sending your any final work to your employer.
As you are taking part in an online business, a PayPal account may be also needed. This is the most standard method to get paid (and to pay) in this segment.
Online business usually means 100% online communication with your boss. Make sure to give a good impression with good photos on your profile. “Good” photos mean professional and formal-looking images. I would advise you use a good camera and try to set up a professional backdrop for your photos.
Using correct language when communicating with your boss also helps when creating a professional image. Although, most of online businesses use informal language, use proper grammar when chatting.
9. Marketing your work
Like many careers, a lot of future opportunities focus on going into management: creating an agency, for instance, where you manage projects (and do some writing) and have a team of writers who do the lion’s share of the work. There are plenty of other options, but most will require you to give up a purely service-based approach. The key, though, is to completely refrain from classifying of yourself as just a freelancer. Think of more of yourself as a business owner – someone whose enterprise is booming and that needs to constantly keep on growing rather than a person who just happens to earn money by writing.
It’s tempting to tell yourself that you’ll just work for higher-paying clients, but the article market tops up: big corporations (the guys with the biggest budgets) have set amounts that they typically expect to pay for freelancers. Their most costly projects are high-paying, not just due to higher rates, but merely because of the sheer quantity of work involved, making it even much harder for a specific writer to take on.
How to find online writing jobs
1. Websites where you can find jobs working as a freelance writer
To get paid for writing articles on blogs and other sites, you may be looking for a job as a freelance blogger or guest blogger. Many online companies are looking for such employees. Freelance job marketplaces and content agencies also hire freelance bloggers and writers.
Freelance bloggers get paid for publishing blog posts either for individuals or corporate clients. Guest bloggers usually write content which is later posted on other websites, often for link building purposes. Another form of guest blogging is when the writer is asked by a client to publish articles about his/her business. The only difference between a guest blogger and a content marketer is that the latter is asked to write content with the aim of attracting new clients and generating more traffic from certain websites.
Successful freelancers can earn anything between 50 cents and several dollars per 100 words, or even more. You may go on your way to earning great money very quickly if you are seriously passionate about writing. Without passion, it’s very hard to make money easily.
Once you have decided to take on the challenge of freelancing, the following sites will help you in finding the right projects and articles:
When applying for jobs on those sites, it is quality of work the counts, not the quantity of words written.
Nevertheless, the guide mentioned above doesn’t mean that being some sort of writing service provider is a dead-end path. It just means that little thought is necessary to make sure that you’re building up a career, rather than just making money in the short-term.
Again I repeat: If you are not a passionate writer, don’t expect to get rich any time soon as a writer.
Perhaps you are planning to write your own blog? This is also something that requires a lot of patience. To start a blog without any experience can take a lot of time. It can take you up to one or two years! After getting to know how to make deals with other bloggers, then you may start to earn more money.
One thing is for sure: as you build up your portfolio and have more experience in writing you can definitely earn a good money in the long run. At the start, it may seem a little time-consuming, but once you get going all of your effort will be rewarded.
2. Websites that pay for your writing services
Paid product reviews
To earn some extra money, it is a good idea to check for websites that offer you payment. Some sites that publish customer reviews may look for a person who test a product and then write a quality and detailed review about it. In this case, your employer pays you for the testing of a certain product and then for giving feedback about it.
To look for such opportunities, check out:
Tip: Writing product reviews is an excellent way to start a nice income online by writing articles because people are already thinking of buying such products, and they are just looking for more information on it. If you are lucky, since they will be more people reviewing the same product, the customer will end up buying from you. It all depends on if the information you provide is useful to them.
A similar way to make money is mystery shopping. These employees should test not only a product but the entire service of the company as well. They are asked to purchase a given product and then to provide a detailed, professional analysis of how the employees of the company treated you, how the product was delivered and how the exact article got rated by quality.
To see websites offering similar jobs, check out:
Taking surveys is another popular way to make a few extra bucks. Writing surveys is usually not considered to be a dream job as many people find it boring. A survey writer should have a lot of patience and the skills to write quality assessments.
To give you an idea on where to start your search for paid survey jobs, you should check out:
Triond is an online publishing site that gives you the ultimate publishing experience. Triond publishes your work on most relevant sites, so you reach out to a wider audience, gain more recognition and earn more revenue. You can submit text, audio, pictures, videos, etc. with Triond, you can increase the readership of your work, gain recognition from your audience, and earn revenue for unique content. It is free to join and open to anybody worldwide.
Helium Network is one of the most popular sites that pay for writing an article. Helium is a site designed and directed to freelance writers, and you get paid to write articles. It is free to join and open to anybody worldwide. You can earn cash from Helium through revenue shares, upfront payments and write contests. The higher the ranking of your articles, the more money you make.
Hubpages is a user generated content site, where users known as hubbers submit articles which are posted as individual web pages. Hubpages does not pay for views on your articles; instead, you get paid from Google, eBay, Amazon, from your affiliates, etc. It is also free to join and open to everybody worldwide.
Xomba is a free community of people who write articles, share ideas and get paid for it. Xomba features two types of posts; ‘Articles’ and ‘Bookmarks’. Articles are 150 words or more and can be anything from movie reviews to “how to make money” articles etc. Bookmarks are links that you share with the rest of the Xomba community by writing a brief and descriptive paragraph. You can earn money from Xomba because it shares its Google AdSense revenues in equal % with its users. It is open to everybody worldwide and free to join.
Families.com is a site in which bloggers write articles with a minimum of 300 words, which can be ideas, stories, demos, photos, etc. Bloggers must be versatile, creative, experienced and well informed on their chosen topics. Families.com pays from $3-$4 per blog entry and gives annual raises up to $5. It is free to join and easy to make money from.
eHow is another place to earn passive income. There are some writers on eHow who are earning over $1,000 per month for articles that they have submitted. You even get to retain the rights to the articles.
If you are a writer who is interested in technology, you might consider applying at Brighthub. It is an excellent site and pays you an upfront fee for each article. As a bonus, you get to earn passive income for page views of your articles as well!
8. Demand Media
A bit more demanding in all areas, Demand Media hires writers to write for a variety of websites. It might take a while to hear from them after you apply, but if you are hired, they pay around $15 per article that you write. You choose articles to write from their list of titles and an editor approves them before they are published.
FundsForWriters is a website that publishes articles of 500-600 words about almost any topic and pays around $50 USD for each post.
If you have a lot of travel experience, then this means you have opportunities to work as a writer for a company that pays you for posting evaluative articles about the country you have visited. International Living is a blog which does just that. If you are considering to apply though, please consider that you need enough travel experience to do that.
11. Matador Network
Matador Network is a travel blog similar to International Living and pays you for writing about countries you have visited. Their standard payment for an article is $40, which depends on article type and length. Higher rates may be offered in special circumstances which are determined on a case-by-case basis.
3. Other ways to find writing jobs
Google is often a great way to find jobs too. You should filter your search results well in order to get closer to your goal. Make sure you use the right keywords and that you try various alternatives. At first sight, it may be like looking for a needle in a haystack, but if you keep your patience, you will surely find something. Advanced Google search is also there for you.
Using Google, you can narrow the results by filtering by country, region, minimum payment, publisher, writing topic, publishing language etc.
How to apply for writing jobs
To apply for a job as a writer, sometimes not only your skills are important but your availability and turnaround as well. Being the first to apply to a publisher searching for writers might bring you luck!
Remember: There are websites offering job opportunities that receive more than a hundred applicants a day.
If you are not the first one to apply for an open position, you might need to be patient to wait for responses. Be prepared! Some of your applications may not receive any replies at all within one or two weeks. In this case, chances are that your profile did not fit the expectations of the publisher. But you should never feel disappointed! The more places you apply and the more time you give yourself, the more chances you give yourself to get hired.
Only apply to those vacancies that you are seriously interested in. Try not to send the same automatic message to apply for multiple jobs. Making the application more personalized increases the likelihood of your future employer having a good impression of you. But please, make sure you spell the company name correctly as they do! Such an error would likely result in an immediate refusal.
As you are looking to work online, an active social media presence is also highly valued among employers. Create a LinkedIn and/or Twitter profile if you don’t have one. Some employers will look for you on Skype immediately after contacting them.
What payment to expect
Writing jobs are usually priced by the word count of the written or published article. There might be exceptions, for example specialized websites or blogs who pay only if the customer is completely satisfied with the content.
Big media companies usually offer low payments per articles: no more than $10-15 USD per 500 words. However, the option to specialize always exists. If you are an expert in one or two specific topics, you could earn a lot of money writing. It is a good idea to look for smaller, but specialized companies looking for such experts on one field of interest. There are publishers who are willing to pay even $300 USD per article or blog post. High-paying freelance writing jobs are not easy to find. To find a jobs like that, you will generally need to have some decent work experience which you can demonstrate to whoever is hiring you.
Payment may vary depending on the topic you are writing about too. I would say that the topic you are choosing to write about will set the limits of your maximum expectable payment. Articles that require deeper research in a certain specialized area (such as economy, politics, history etc.) not only bring you income for your writing skills, but also for doing the necessary research.
How much you are able to get paid may also depend on your language skills and professional experience in writing. Firstly, native English speakers are usually better paid than foreigners. Secondly, good quality articles and posts are always more appreciated. By adopting a natural and creative writing style you will surely have more chance to getting higher paid jobs.
Determining the writing services that you can offer
The wide variety of writing work out there is incredible. You can get projects writing copy for websites, writing annual reports for companies, writing blog posts and just about anything else out there that involves lining up works in a row.
You can also earn a living offering services related to writing. You can provide coaching for other writers, offer editing or research, offer project management for big writing projects without truly doing the writing. There truly is an incredible amount of chances out there for service providers.
That does mean though, at some point every writer offering services has to sit down and decide exactly what sort of services he or she has an interest in offering. There are specialized skills that go along with different types of writing. The techniques you need to write successful greeting cards are very different from the techniques you need to write successful articles optimized for search engines. Hence, a great consideration needs to be taken.
One of the major considerations when it comes to providing writing services is that, in the absence of careful planning, there isn’t a clear and definite career plan. You start writing and then raise your rates on a regular basis because ten years down the road you will still be writing and may not be able to increase your rates owing to the fact that there aren’t any clients available to pay higher prices.
If you are satisfied with your job as a writer
Online work should not be a problem if you have or plan to have a family or a small child. The flexibility to work whenever you have time to gives you a great opportunity to schedule your life around your priorities. Working in a calm environment helps to improve performance and productivity as well.
If you have done everything you can to reach your goals, your efforts will be rewarded with experience and with money. In time you will become the experienced writer you want to be, enjoying all the advantages of your dream job. Working from the convenience of your home allows you to maintain your own daily rhythm. What other job would allow you to stay in the bed until late or eat at the office? Ah, your office is your bed? As you wish!
Essential tools for proper performance
It is a good idea to purchase a good dictionary and thesaurus. A good grammar book is also a wise purchase. You need to have a love for reading too. The “Dummy” books are a great resource for continuing education. There are many of these available on Amazon for a good price. Always keep reading and writing. You should also learn about social media and what it entails. Social media is a fairly new avenue for people in business, and you will learn a lot from these freelance jobs online and you will realize that social media is the wave of the now, not the future. It’s time to jump on board.
In closing, I wish you the best for your success in your writing career. You are a great writer with tremendous genius in you if you are able to begin selling your ideas for money. It’s time to unearth your writing capabilities and start earning lucrative remunerations from your writing on the internet. It can be a constant learning experience, and if you truly enjoy writing, you will never get bored. The most important thing is to keep writing!