How Much Do Freelance Writers Make Per Article?

how much do freelance writers make per article
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When it comes to how much do freelance writers make per article, the truth is rates are all over the place from a few dollars to hundreds of dollars. The good news is that there are ways to figure out how much you should be making.

How Much Do Freelance Writers Make Per Article?

There are a couple of ways to figure out how much you should charge and what you can expect to make. You will need to take into consideration who you’re writing for, how long the article is, and yes how much you would like to make.

It’s true. You have a lot if not complete control over how much you make to write an article and that’s pretty cool.

So, let’s look at some of the considerations that come into play.

1. Who You’re Writing For

You’ve really got two choices here or maybe three at most.

You can do one of the following:

  • Find your own clients
  • Work for a writing platform such as Writer’s Access
  • Find work on Upwork

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A. Finding your own clients is always the best route. You will get paid more and you can determine what you want to receive to write an article.

For example, if you feel you want $150 to write a 1,000-word article, you can make that your rate and you will find clients that will pay that.

On the other hand, if you want to charge $75 dollars for the same article you can do that as well. It is really up to you.

That’s one of the best things about finding your own clients, you can charge whatever you want and you will find clients that will pay it. Not to mention, you won’t run into a bunch of competition that’s trying to undercut you.

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B. Sign up on a writing platform such as Writer’s Access or Textbrokers. I am not a fan of going this route.

The platform will determine how much you can make and it will be per word.

You can expect to be paid as little as 3 cents per word and as much as 8 cents per word.

That means if you were to write a 1,000-word article you would make between $30 dollars and $80 dollars.

As you can see, it is a lot less than if you went out and found your own clients.

Even so, it is one way to go if you want to be a freelance writer.

My point has always been that the work is the same whether you’re being paid pennies or if you are being paid hundreds of dollars, so I’d rather make the hundreds over the pennies.

C. Signing up at Upwork is another option. On this platform, you can decide how much you want to make per hour.

That means if you want to make $30 per hour, you can set that as your rate. 

The problem is there is a lot of competition trying to get the same writing assignments, so one of your competitors might offer to write that same article for $20 per hour or a flat rate. If they have a few good reviews they will beat you out of the job every single time.

This means you are going to have to accept less, and sometimes a lot less than you want if you want the assignment.

This can be a quick race to the bottom. 

The other issue is that a lot of the clients on Upwork are looking for writers that will write for almost nothing meaning 1 or 2 cents per word.

So, while you might have great intentions to make that $30 an hour, it is really difficult to get started as a new writer and get paid what you want and what you’re worth.

Again, this is one of the reasons getting your own clients is the best way to go. No one else is contacting these businesses, so there is no competition to compete against.

2. How Long the Article Is

It only stands to reason that the longer an article is, the more you will be paid. 

When I started freelance writing, most clients wanted articles around the 500-word mark. Nowadays, you will find that clients want a 1,000-word article or even a 2,000-word article.

That means you will make a lot more per writing assignment.

Again, if you are working for a writing platform and getting 5 cents per word then you would make:

  •  $25 for a 500-word article
  • $50 for a 1,000-word article
  • $100 for a 2,000-word article

If you’re finding your own clients, it would be more likely that you would make:

  • $125 for a 500-word article
  • $300 for a 1,000-word article
  • $600 for a 2,000-word article

You can see there is a huge difference.

Maybe you are happy with $100 for a 2,000-word article and not having to market to find clients and that’s completely fine. 

Just know you are leaving money on the table and your time and abilities are being undervalued.

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3. How Much You Would Like to Make

This kind of plays into what I said above. It is up to you to determine how much money you would like to make to write an article and then charge that.

I always found my own clients and I always set my own rates. I never had any trouble finding as many clients as I wanted or needed.

If someone felt my rates were too high then I just went on to the next one.

You never want to discount your rates. If a prospective client asks you to, this is not someone you want to have a business relationship with.

It means they don’t value you or your work or the value your writing will bring to their business.

This type of client will be very difficult to work with and will never be happy.

They will see you as an employee instead of a business owner and trust me they will drive you crazy and be more trouble than they are worth.

Find clients that value you and your work, and you will always be happy. Write well and meet deadlines and they will be happy too and you’ll have a well-paying client for years to come.

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How To Determine Your Writing Rates

There are a couple of ways you can determine your writing rates, so you will know how much to charge for an article.

1. By the Hour

This is how I do it and personally feel is the best way to determine how much to charge.

It’s pretty simple. Decide how much per hour you would like to make.

For example, maybe you want to make $50 per hour or $35 or $75. It doesn’t really matter.

You just need to take into consideration how many hours per week you can write and how much you need to make to cover all your bills and living expenses.

When I started out, I decided I wanted to make $45 per hour. I’m not sure where I came up with that amount but it sounded good to me at the time. 

I was making $32 an hour teaching college part-time, so I knew I wanted to make more than that.

Over time, I gave myself a raise and decided I wanted to make $100 per hour.

Anyway, come up with a number.

Then you will need to figure out how quickly you can research and write an article, on average.

For me, I knew I could research and write a 500-word article in about 45 minutes. I wanted to give myself a little wiggle room at first, so I decided to charge $45 for a 500-word article. 

That would make my hourly rate $60 per hour.

That meant a 1,000-word article would be $90 dollars and a 2000-word article would be $180 dollars.

As I said, I raised my hourly rate to $100, so at that point, I was charging $100 for a 500-word article, $200 for a 1,000-word article, and $400 for a 2,000-word article.

After a while, I changed what I was writing from articles to case studies, white papers, and email series which all pay quite a bit more.

It’s really up to you.

You can tap into this lucrative, yet little-known market that 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.

Keep in mind, if you decide to determine your rates using the by the hour method, this is just so you know how much to charge your clients.

You never want to give them your hourly rate. Always use a flat rate. Otherwise, as you get more experienced you will start making less money because your writing and research speeds will increase.

2. Per Word

You can also decide what you want to charge per word. 

It is really pretty much the same as by the hour, and again you will want to determine how long it takes you to write an article at different lengths and how much research you will need to do.

When you know that, you can figure out your per word rate.

Once you figure out what you want per word, you can just relay that to your clients. 

Then they will know how long of an article they will want you to write.

To Sum it All Up:

When it comes to how much freelance writers make per article, it depends on who you write for, how long the article is, and what you want to charge. It really is up to you. You can work for writing platforms that pay 3 or 4 or 5 cents per word, or you can find your own clients and charge them what you want.

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