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Freelance Writer Pay – Everything You Need to Know

freelance writer pay
Depositphoto ID: 65740997 Copyright: iqoncept

When it comes to freelance writer pay, there’s a lot you need to know. How you find your clients, who you are writing for, and even the type of writing you do all play a part in how much you get paid. 

So, let’s go through these one by one, so you can have a good idea of how much money you can make.

What to Expect When it Comes to Freelance Writer Pay

First off, I want to give you some really great news. How much you make or earn from freelance writing is completely up to you.

You need to keep in mind, you are not an employee. You get to decide how much you want to charge and how much you are willing to accept.

You determine your value, not someone else. 

How all this shakes out depends on the following three considerations. 

I’ll get into the details in a moment, but you should know that as a freelance writer you can be paid as little as 2 cents per word and as much as $25,000 or more for one piece of writing.

I know it is hard to believe, but it is true. You are in control of your freelancing future and whether or not you make $10,000 dollar a year or have a six-figure income.

So, let’s find out how you do that.

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1. How You Find Your Clients

There are a lot of ways to find clients, but it isn’t so much how you go about finding clients as it is about where you find your clients.

The main distinction is whether you find direct clients or you use a writing platform such as Writer’s Access or Textbroker or even Upwork.

When you find your clients on a writing platform, the platform will determine, for the most part, what you can charge.

That’s true on both Writer’s Access and Textbroker. You will be paid pennies to write.

Usually, that means between 3 cents per word and 8 cents per word on the higher side.

The platform will determine, based on a writing sample what level of writer you are. Your “level” will determine how much per word you will be paid.

So, when it comes to freelance writer pay, if you use a platform such as these to get work, you will be paid pennies.

I realize that if you are writing a 2,000-word article and you are paid 5 cents per word that means you will make a $100 for the article. 

That doesn’t sound too bad, but it is actually horrible in the scheme of things when you could be paid $500 dollars or more for the same article if you find your own clients.

On Upwork, you can set your per hour rate, but you have a whole lot of competition. Let’s say, you want to make $50 per hour but others are willing to write the same article for $25 dollars per hour you won’t get the job.

Not to mention a lot of clients looking for writers on Upwork want to pay peanuts. This isn’t the best place to find clients when you are new.

So, the bottom line is this when it comes to freelance writers pay if you are looking for work on writer’s platforms you won’t be paid well and you have a ton of competition, and you will have to work really hard to make a living.

You will literally be working for pennies. 

The truth of the matter is that the work is the same regardless of how much you get paid for it.

So, if you want to work less and get paid more, then you need to find your clients directly. Then you get to decide how much your time and ability are worth, and trust me, it is worth a lot more than you realize.

There are a lot of ways to go about finding your own clients. I did it the easy and fast way by calling or email businesses directly. Going this route you can have clients in just a couple of days or so.

You can then determine how much you want to make per hour, even though you will be charging your clients a flat fee, it allows you to figure out how much you are really making.

When I first started freelancing, I decided I wanted to make at least $45 dollars per hour. That sounded like a nice amount.

I knew I could research and write a 500-word article (which is what most people were looking for at that time) in about 45 minutes. So, I decided to charge $45 dollars for a 500-word article.

Because I got my clients directly, I had no problems with finding clients that would pay that amount. 

In fact, when I raised that to $50 for the same article, I had a couple of new clients concerned that I wouldn’t be able to provide quality for that low of a rate, so don’t psych yourself out that someone won’t pay what you want.

Work with people who understand and appreciate the value of your work.

After about a year or so, I decided I wanted to make $100 per hour, so I raised my rates. I also raised my rates at the beginning of each new year after that.

The bottom line here is that if you find your own clients you can charge whatever you want. It’s a numbers game. You just keep looking for clients that are willing to pay your rate.

They are out there.

You can clearly see the advantage of finding your own clients over working for a writing platform, but the decision is yours. 

Just understand that whatever you choose it will affect your bank account. 

Not to mention, after writing for hours and hours all day every day, working for pennies can really wear you down.

My goal when I started was to make $100 dollars per day. I knew I could do that with just 2 to 3 articles per day which meant I would only have to write 2 hours per day.

If I was writing for 4 cents per word, I would have to write 2,500 words per day to make the same $100 dollars and it would have taken me about 5 hours to do so.

That just seems really depressing to me.

You might also enjoy:

What You Need to Know About Freelance Writing Education

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2. Who You Are Writing For

The second consideration that is going to greatly affect your freelance writer pay is who you are writing for. 

We already covered the difference between direct clients and writing platforms, but there are other considerations.

When starting out, you may end up writing for some small businesses and that’s fine. I did the same.

As I got more experienced, I realized that writing for mid-size to large companies and corporation makes more sense.

They have more work and they have bigger budgets. 

That means they can pay me more even though the work is the same.

Let’s face it some mom-and-pop businesses may need your writing, but they can’t pay too much for it. They don’t have the budget and they may not appreciate how much value your writing can bring to their business.

The last thing you want to do is have to convince a client that you are worth the money you are charging. 

That is an uphill battle and one that in the end you will lose.

Instead, find clients that already know what you are worth and have the money to pay you.

For example, I do a lot of writing for accountants as I have a degree in accounting. It also pays better and because I know the subject matter it takes very little research.

I have one client that buys 4 articles from me per month. Each of these articles is super short, about 250 to 300 words and he pays me $125 per article, so that’s a nice $500 per month that takes me about an hour and a half to complete.

His accounting firm has the budget to pay me and he knows the value my work brings to him.

The point here is if you find clients that are larger businesses you will make more money without having to work any harder.

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3. The Type of Writing You Do

When it comes to freelance write pay, what type of writing you do may be the most important aspect when it comes to how much money you make.

I started out writing web pages such as service pages, about pages, and the like as well as articles for business websites.

It was a great way to get some experience.

Over time, I moved on to writing case studies, email series, white papers, and so on. This type of writing pays a great deal more.

Case studies can bring in as much as $1,500 dollars for two pages. Email series can pay you $2,000 or more. White papers pay the same and can go up to $5,000 dollars. 

Not to mention, sales letters can easily pay $25,000 or more if you get royalties on the backend.

What’s important to understand about these different types of writing is that they aren’t any more difficult than writing an article and most of them don’t take any longer.

When you move away from writing articles to writing case studies, for example, you give yourself a major raise without having to do any more work.

The only consideration is you might not know how to do this type of writing. Luckily, there are online courses you can take to help learn these different types of writing.

I’ve taken a few myself and can highly recommend them. 

Can you write a simple letter?

If yes, you could be in big demand, earning big money, writing just a few hours a day from anywhere in the world you choose to be. Check out how right here.

I’ve done it myself and it is a lot of fun.

Not to mention, there is a market that pays you up to $500 to write a simple email …

This lucrative, yet little-known market is desperate for good writers who can follow a few simple rules. What’s more, the pay is great. Up to $500 to write a quick email, and up to $3,500 to write approximately 1,500 words. To learn more, click here.

To Sum it All Up:

When it comes to freelance writer’s pay, it is up to you what you want to earn. You can make pennies per word, or you can find your own clients directly and make $100 or more per hour. You can also take a course on how to write content that commands high dollars and earn a six-figure income easier and sooner than you could ever imagine.

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