Quit wasting your time doing paid surveys. You will make a dollar or two a day. If you want to get paid fairly for your time, start doing some writing tasks. These will award you anywhere from $5 to $50 an hour depending on your skill level.
In fact, you could make $100,000 a year off of being a writer online!
Yes, we are serious …
Now let us explain in case you are currently a freelancer, so you can understand how your earnings could increase so dramatically.
To demonstrate that, let’s do a little exercise.
I know, I know … you probably think we are just lying … it couldn’t be possible to make $100,000 a year off writing online, but it really is. Your earning potential is only limited to the understanding of your approach to finding work.
Since we have expert freelancers on our site, we’re going to share some true insider tips to save you lots of time and disappointment!
So, what do you make per word now?
Let’s look at what’s possible for you …
|The amount you charge per word||The amount of words to make $100,000||The number of 1,000 word posts you must write|
|1 cent||10 million words||Approx 190 per week|
|2 cents||5 million words||Approx 95 per week|
|4 cents||2.5 million words||Approx 47.5 per week|
|10 cents||1 million words||Approx 19 per week|
I don’t know about you, but I have pushed out 5,000+ words a day on a long-term basis with no hitches.
If it were 10 cents a word at 5,000 words a day, that’s $500 earned each working day. That’s not too bad, and it would amount to $100,000 after just 10 months of five-day working weeks.
Okay, so realistically what can you earn off writing?
10 cents per word is a standard rate for premium quality work and you do not have to be a special published author to expect it.
Any experienced native English writer can command such a price.
We’re going to show you how that’s true …
So, ask yourself … how many words can you produce a day?
At 10 cents per word, 5,000 words of content each day is $500 in earnings. This would be $125,000 at five days a week with two weeks vacation each year. This is completely possible, and sustainable, for those that learn how to master the art of online writing and freelancing!
Now let’s get started teaching you how to make more …
So when you look for an answer to this in Google, you are going to find a mixed bag of answers.
The most common are: “Stay away from writing, you won’t make good money.” and, “Only write for businesses or for your own website if you want to make real money.”
These certainly hold merit, but the industry has evolved and now there are numerous businesses looking to capitalize on your skills.
You do not have to stay as a freelancer with no value, so long as you are truly an expert writer.
You can write at sites like Scripted.com, which allow you to charge 10 cents and more a word to corporate clients like Sportchek, Walmart, YellowPages and ZenPlanner.
But what other ways could you land top-paying writing gigs?
Aside from finding work on a paid writing site, you could also find work by cold marketing yourself to businesses.
This would consist of simply contacting a business or corporation and inquiring as to whether they would be interested in your service. This works well if you have a built up portfolio and a nice website showing off what you have to offer.
However, most of the time this will fail. The companies with high budgets for digital marketing are usually not focused on hiring people that cold contact them. You would need a very relevant specialty to offer to really catch their attention.
This is understandable, but does it mean you should not take this approach? Certainly not, but you need to understand that there are already many writing sites that corporate clients use. If you want to get experience writing for corporate blogs, sign up to write at Ebyline.com and Scripted.com; if you are not an Upwork.com freelancer, get on board there too!
So basically, there are three other major approaches you can take …
In regards to the last point, WAHM.com (Work At Home Mothers Forum) is a website with a forum that is perfect for finding these opportunities. GrowthHackers.com is a newer site that also has work overflow posted at times. They’re better for a different reason though — you can network with business and finance experts, SEO gurus, marketing masters, and more, and you can also learn from them.
So what if I told you that writing online could make you $200,000 a year instead?
Yes, that’s right … I just doubled the claim!
This can be done by having a rockstar byline footprint. If you are an author at sites like Forbes, USNews, and Wall Street Journal, the sky is the limit. You can use your publishing access to monetize your own product or to sell your writing service to those looking for premium backlinks.
While some of the larger news sites are not looking for new contributors, there’s always another big site around the corner. Plus, as you build up your portfolio you increase your chances of getting approved to join top-level teams.
How do you start building your byline up?
This is like building your first site. You think it’s rocket science, but once you know what you are doing it all comes together quite nice. So just jump in naked and be prepared to get confused along the way, as it is the only way you will succeed.
Here are some good starting points to look into …
Blasting News – this is a global news website with 250,000+ contributors; if you want to score a byline on a legitimate news site, it will be easy to accomplish here. One you sign up to write you can also earn money off the work if you get enough views, which makes it a great site for social butterflies.
CopyPress – the assignments are only semi-frequent here but they pay pretty good, and they let you claim credit for your posts through Google Authorship. The cool thing is you’ll get those reputable bylines while getting paid well at the same time. Unfortunately, there are just a few contracts mailed out each month and not all applicants get the spot.
Media Shower – while not all of your assignments will include a byline, any that do can be used as a a sample of your work. Not to mention, you can make well above 5 cents per word here if you do well.
Suite 101 – while you won’t make much off writing for them, they do allow you to include your byline. It would be a good place to start as they are pretty beginner-friendly overall.
Instead of using a site that lets you author with a byline, you could contribute to many different blogs and websites with your byline. Just apply directly, as many sites have a page for you to do so. Some will let you submit a blog pitch and you can wait for approval, while others request that you include the pitched post in your submission.
A key point to make clear — you do not need a website in order to submit a guest post.
It is not always about the backlinks; you can use these published posts to show off your writing strength. Furthermore, it allows you to claim, “I’ve been published in XYZ magazine, and on ABC company’s blog,” which makes it much easier to score new clients.
You want to stand out, put some strong guest posts behind you … to do this, start submitting cool and relevant posts to sites like Business Insider and Money Saving Mom. These are both top-level websites, yet they have a high approval rating on contributed content.
There are really many websites that will take you in, but make sure you are able to credit your name, your website, and ideally your headshot. This will give the most value when citing your past published posts.
Just remember, there are really three pay ranges for writers …
Under five cents per word … you have a mix of part-timers, new writers, foreign freelancers, and many experienced and even highly talented writers that just do not know how to make more.
Between five cents and 10 cents per words … these are people starting to step their game up, and they likely have some byline presence to get them where they are going.
10 cents or more per word … at this level, you pretty much need an excellent resume with some specialist writing experience, unless you luck into publishing access at a big site.
You can scale through each of these pay ranges, but your ability to hop between them comes down to how you approach your work.
Here are 6 fast tips so you can get the most for your hard efforts …
Next, get to know where you’re losing money …
Furthermore, it would be a good idea to read our ‘Freelancers Identity Theft Protection Guide‘ as it has a lot of specially tailored advice that applies specifically to writers!
In case you have yet to join the best writing sites, here’s our take on some of the most popular ones around.
There are many places you can find writing work, but here’s a list of the top-10 from top to bottom. If I left any out that are on the larger-side, feel free to mention in a comment below!
Disclaimer: These are editorial reviews posted by an Elite Personal Finance writer. By no way should they be considered the ultimate feedback. It is just what one highly experienced freelancer writer noticed along their own journey.
What do I think of Upwork?
Unfortunately, you really do have to rely on a freelance marketplace in order to have access to the best and most consistent clients.
That’s because Upwork, at any given time, has 10,000 or more content-based jobs posted.
Example Jobs …
You are guaranteed to find work here and as you build up your feedback and your ‘Success Score’ you will increase the minimum you charge clients gradually.
The best thing about Upwork is that it helps you to find clients to work with on a long-term basis. If you stay with the same client for $10,000 worth of work, they will decrease their 10% fee to 5% which is a nice plus.
But since it is such an interactive marketplace, and as clients often get hands-on with freelancers, you can start to learn other skills and build your experience in different ways. This can lead to learning what it takes to run a project on your own. It could also open the doors to many high-paying clients once your reputation is well-established.
The biggest downfall with Upwork is the slow clearance time. Say you work with only one client and he pays you twice a month. You complete a post and get paid two weeks later, then you wait the six clearing days with Upwork and then it heads to your bank or PayPal. This is quite a while to wait, but once you get into a steady income flow it’s not such an issue.
Clients are pretty flexible on here and the long job listing write-ups make it easy to get a feel for what each client is like. You can see how much they have spent since joining the site, whether their payment method is verified or not, and their previous feedback from other freelancers.
As for how much you can make, as a native English writer there will be a consistent flow of clients begging to keep you for 1 to 2 cents per word. There are many clients paying 4 to 8 cents per word for true quality content as well. But, the projects above 10 cents per word are pretty limited on here; to make a lot more, you really need to add some skills to your repertoire.
Either way, you need to join Upwork and stay active on here until you land that dream client you’ve always wanted.
Why write for Upwork?
Why avoid Upwork?
What do I think of Scripted?
Scripted is a website that offers top-quality content writing to business clients. Their interface has recently changed, and now they put forward a huge effort towards making their marketplace interactive between clients and writers.
The best part about Scripted versus most other writing mills (like TextBroker) is that it doesn’t matter how you rank on the scale; as long as you get approved to join the team, there are plenty high-paying jobs waiting for you.
You will get valued for your writing work at Scripted.
The biggest downfall is that interactions with editors are limited. The system got an overhaul recently; you get to set the rate you charge per word and see how much goes to the editor assigned to your piece.
You get judged on your work based on the following classifications: Guidelines, Originality, Quality, and Research. Falling down in the rankings does not necessarily mean that you will be removed from the team. In fact, even with a lower ranking you will still see everything that everyone else does.
The trick with Scripted is to make sure you get listed under a few specialties. Many Scripted members complain that it is too hard to make this happen. However, I know for a fact that it’s not.
If you want to make sure you get approved, just use some of your recent work to cross-reference when you apply for the specialty category. If you are a ghostwriter, just request from a client that they change the author name of a piece you wrote temporarily so it gets verified by Scripted’s staff.
Either way, it will get you approved as a specialist and these have higher standard pay rates and you get priority access.
Example Jobs …
Above you see some pitch requests that are currently available as there are no available jobs (at this specific time). If you choose to submit a pitch request, you can actually run it longer than the character length range shows. It is best to go into a bit of detail as the client will be the one to see this. You can make a lot as a business, finance, or technology specialist if you perfect the pitching process.
At Scripted, you can expect to pick up at least semi-regular assignments for 5 to 10 cents per word. You can make an easy $500 a month off here, and if you are lucky and get liked by one of the clients it could lead to $5,000 or more in earnings a month. It’s definitely not a place to avoid, even if things seem slow at times.
The coolest thing is their new Topic Marketplace and Pitches feature. It allows you to suggest posts to clients that explain generally what they want content on. This is the perfect way to pair up with clients that have high volume content needs.
It also allows you to control what you write about; just write a pitch request in the marketplace and wait for it to get sold, or make a specific pitch to a client directly.Even if you have no work on any given day, sign on to see if there are new pitch request opportunities.
As far as how long your payment takes, they credit your Scripted account after the client approves the work or after a set amount of days without a response.
Why write for Scripted?
Why avoid Scripted?
What do I think of Ebyline?
Okay, so you can find some pretty good jobs here. They get big clients like eBay and The Miami Herald from time to time.
One thing I did notice: when they had eBay assignments, the pay rate was HALF that of what Scripted offered for the exact same work!
However, the news posts are pretty short, fun to write, and they pay upwards of $500 a piece. So if you have a solid profile and a nice headshot, it is well worth having an account here. It is not a place to expect daily work from, but those that have done well here need to look nowhere else.
You can literally make 20 cents per word writing on Ebyline, but you need to land the right job at the right time. You also have to make sure you become Ebyline approved. This means you need to put up a headshot — at Scripted, you don’t need an image at all … you can even just show your first name and the first initial of your last name there.
Ebyline is all about letting the clients get personal with the freelancers. Scripted offers limited interactions and doesn’t care so much about whether the company finds the writer to be a perfect match; at Scripted, they just match businesses with quality writing providers in general for the most part.
So, definitely just bother with Ebyline if you can show yourself off in a pretty profile. If you can’t, wait till a later time when you have built your experience up. Keep in mind, a strong way of promoting your quality of work is by linking to examples of published posts on the Web, and both Ebyline and Scripted will ask for these.
Ebyline has a unique payment clearing process, which unfortunately for the writer it means the funds are locked up for a whole month. After that they are sent to your PayPal for you to use as you wish.
What do I think of Zerys?
So this place is a bit of a mixed bag. If you stay active and have a high approval rating, chances are you will see a plentiful job board. But if you fall off track or go on vacation for a few weeks, you are going to need to be one of their best-rated writers to stand much of a chance until you build some traction again.
They haven’t really updated their dashboard interface to a satisfying point. Features like editor jobs have been added and visually planned in, but even the things that do have elements in place are not working properly yet.
However, Zerys itself is a huge writing company that has many great clients. You have nothing to worry about when working as a writer here. Its a site that flies under the radar, yet has a large supply of work most of the time. If you can get on top, you won’t have to look anywhere else for work.
For the most part, the upper scale of pay rates is around 7 cents per word. You could stand to make more, but this is the most that clients traditionally pay out for requested work.
Just set the rate you charge to higher and request an increase in pay whenever a client begins to specifically request you often. Interestingly, it is not uncommon for clients to tip writers on here for providing good work.
As far as how often you should log in here, base it around what you’re finding from other sites. If you have no luck elsewhere, start working here to see whether you can build up some clientele. If you are able to select from a wide range of jobs here though, I highly suggest you stay dedicated to them because the consistency is well worth it.
However, keep in mind that some clients do the same thing here as they do on iWriter where they reject your work for no valid reason. Thankfully, at both of these writing sites you can see what the client’s approval rating is before applying for their job. For those that have worked at iWriter before, don’t worry … most clients on Zerys have a reasonable approval rating.
You get paid monthly here, they calculate up what you made in the course of the previous month and then it gets paid out. Payments are not always made right at the first of the month, but they never run behind.
Why write for Zerys?
Why avoid Zerys?
What do I think of Fiverr?
If you are not having any luck at the sites above, it might be time to start up a Fiverr profile. The big perk of working at Fiverr is that the clients come flocking to you. The payment is secured before you begin. There are no guesses over whether you will be paid, and you don’t have to necessarily, “kiss ass,” to your clients.
Now many would say, “How can you make $100,000 at Fiverr?” and before that would make sense. Because it used to be that you had to make gigs you were offering for $5 only. They made it possible to offer add-ons afterwards, but this didn’t create much extra profit.
However, recently they changed to display packages that the service provider can offer. This consists of three different offers that the customer can choose from.
For instance, in the logos section you can pick a basic logo designed for, say, $5, get it in high resolution for $25, or get it in high resolution and with the vector files for $50.
So you can offer premium services here. In fact, there are many services that are in the $100’s range per gig. If you aren’t already a Fiverr member, sign up and start working here. A quick tip: your feedback is everything for getting noticed in their search engines, so if you can send some private clients through Fiverr to build up your status.
Why write for Fiverr?
1. You do not have to waste time chasing clients, they come to you.
2. You can easily outsource this writing work if your services become popular enough.
3. You can branch off to offer other gigs and easily get noticed once you become successful.
Why avoid Fiverr?
1. They take 20% off everything you earn.
2. You are not guaranteed any amount of work, and when work does come you have to limit how much you take to what you can fit in your schedule.
3. If you have work keeping you busy elsewhere, it can hurt your profile visibility if you have to constantly turn down assignments.
What do I think of Guru?
I do not advise joining Guru right away. This is a place you`want to focus your attention at once you have a portfolio of top quality work. There are some amazing clients on here, and you can land a literal $100,000 salary-paying job by networking on Guru.
The problem is there are only maybe 5,000 jobs open at once on here. Meanwhile, Upwork has well over 100,000 jobs and fairly well the same selection of service categories. This means you will not find much work, it’s not your daily banker. But when clients have reasons to chase you, after your portfolio is built up and you have a website showcasing your work, then you should give Guru a serious shot.
Also, it is important to note that Guru is a highly legitimate company. You do not have to worry about anything while working here. Your information is safe and you will be paid promptly; the website works a lot like how Upwork does, and it gives the old eLance feel as well.
What do I think of iWriter?
So like we said already, a big problem with iWriter is the high volume of article rejections that take place. It is hard to find a client that is likely to approve your work, even if you submit something that’s top quality. Although, there are a fair few that do approve just about anything that gets sent to them.
In reality, you only want to bother with iWriter if you plan to become an Elite Plus writer. This takes a lot of work though, as you have to get a super strong rating on 40 assignments before you qualify. And it is easy to be on the line in between Elite and Elite Plus, so one temperamental client could send you to a much lower pay category.
If you can manage to become an Elite Plus writer, then you can make upwards of 10 cents per word. Sometimes there are even simple jobs like writing Facebook posts that pay pretty well $100 per hour once you calculate it out.
Many freelancers see iWriter as a site that they love and hate all at the same time. We never want to have to turn back to them. If you can find better paying work elsewhere, by all means don’t bother with iWriter at all.
Example Jobs …
The worst part is, although I cannot confirm if it’s still the case, when you are not an Elite Plus member yet they make it look like there are more (and better) jobs than you’ll get. It takes 40 top-reviewed articles, which is incredibly difficult to pull off here. There are too many picky and ignorant clients, and most have 0-75% approval rates.
But for the initial experience and to make some extra cash, go ahead — and if you do get the Elite Plus ranking, definitely scalp any good paying jobs with high approval ratings as they come.
Also, you can set many different monthly payment dates or every two weeks if you prefer. They are consistent with payouts, and if a client fails to respond within so many days of completing an assignment you will still get rewarded.
Why write for iWriter?
1. You are able to register and start taking assignments right away.
2. If you become an Elite Plus writer, you will have access to many high paying assignments.
3. Their payments are consistent and you can pick from numerous pay schedules.
Why avoid iWriter?
1. There are way too many clients with very low approval ratings.
2. If you are not an Elite Plus writer, you will not make much at all.
3. Getting the Elite Plus ranking requires 40 completed jobs, and keeping the high minimum rating is not easy when it just takes a few 4-star reviews to send you under.
What do I think of Great Content?
So this website hires people outside of the UK, but their clientele is also UK-based and they want UK English obviously. This makes it a little harder for an American to do well on here. But, some have had a fair amount of success writing for Great Content … it all boils down to you writing vocabulary. If you are a Canadian, then there might be some skill crossover as Canadian English takes a lot from UK English.
You will work for corporate clients a lot of the time on here. City and product descriptions are commonly ordered. They often pay from 2 to 5 cents per word, which isn’t bad at all. You can make a bit more if you rank higher, but there aren’t too many orders in the top-end of their pricing range.
This is one of those sites that is worth joining just so you have the chance to see what they have for you to work on. As you can grab any job that’s available to your skill level, there’s no chasing work. You just have to login and see if there’s a task for you … so definitely make that little effort if you can write well in UK English and if this pay range appeals to you.
Note: Aside from their .co.uk domain extension, you can find this website in other nationalities. Unfortunately, it appears this is mainly to accommodate the clients at the moment; there simply aren’t many jobs for non-UK writers on their team at this time.
Why write for Great Content?
1. They pay well for simple work, such as city and product descriptions.
2. Sometimes they pick up contracts for hundreds to thousands of smaller pieces of work.
3. You get to write on behalf of various companies, including some that are well known.
Why avoid Great Content?
1. As they are mainly a UK business, a non-UK writer might get rated poorly here.
2. The work is often repetitive and not very creative at all.
3. Their website interface is dull and does not allow for extensive interactions with clients.
What do I think of HireWriters?
So you might stumble upon this website, which has a simple but friendly design. If you do sign up, one other great feature you will notice is their easy-to-use writing editor. You do all the work on the site and submit it to get paid. They pay out as often as every Friday and you just need $10 in your account.
Sometimes you can pick up writing tasks on here that pay upwards of 4 to 8 cents per word. It is not incredibly common though, and most of the tasks pay closer to 1 cent per word. It is easy to hit their top ranking level, so if you are bored and not making money anywhere else you might want to chase that. Then you can just use the site for grabbing the high-paying assignments as they come in.
HireWriters often has close to 1,000 writing tasks available. These are anywhere from Facebook statuses and Twitter tweets to 100 to 1,000+ word blog posts, essays, and much more. Sometimes there are closer to just 100 assignments available, it all depends on the timing of things.
Example Jobs …
The biggest downfall is that you can only take so many assignments at once. This is the case at many sites — for instance, Zerys makes you work on one project only at a time. But, you really have to wait till the work gets approved or till it times out which takes almost a week.
I believe it’s 12 tasks you can take on at once when you are in the top rating level, which is not too bad actually as you will likely have other stuff on the go elsewhere to fill your time. And you really just want to use HireWriters for the great paying tasks that pop up from time-to-time.
Another tip for here: fill your queue with assignments that actually pay well. It might not make sense to take on a 50 word assignment to make 50 cents. You could do much better taking on 450 word posts that pay $5. Most of the assignments are super easy too and their editor makes it possible to rush through work and still get paid.
Furthermore, you will not get any real satisfaction out of your work. Most of it will get approved by the client — and you can see their approval ratings before taking their task. But you will find that you end up rushing the work just to get the money and no real value goes in or comes out of any part of the process.
Why write for HireWriters?
Why avoid HireWriters?
1. Most of their assignments are very low paying.
2. A lot of their writers have low approval ratings.
3. The work is boring and most of it doesn’t pay well at all.
What do I think of Freelancer?
This is a website that’s much like Upwork, except it doesn’t have the same qualities. You can bid on projects in the marketplace and a client can accept you if they wish. It’s a simple and nice platform, but the problem lies within a completely different variable.
In fact, this place has been in the middle of a lot of controversy lately. You can read all about it, just search Google for WorldLawDirect.com and include “freelancer.com” in your search. There are countless freelancers (and even clients) that have been ripped off, defrauded, and more; simply put, you don’t want to waste time with these problems!
So unless they get bought out and reinvigorated, I would suggest staying away from here for now.
And you do not have to consider it a loss either. Even though they have a high user count and a big client base, chances are you will not have any life-changing experiences here. Furthermore, most high-paying clients are ordering off sites like Scripted.com or marketplaces like Upwork.com instead.
There are many other sites worth mentioning, comment below if you are interested in more info on any not listed here.
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