Editing and proofreading charges

10 replies
I know everybody's different but I'm looking for some guidance on editing and proofreading charges.

I have been copywriting for a number of years so I am more than comfortable with what I can achieve within certain timeframes and how much I think I'm worth.

I started my own business earlier in the year and as a result, I have naturally received enquiries regarding editing and basic proofreading too.

I know that every job is different but I wondered if anyone could share their guidelines for quoting on proofreading and editing?

I haven't accepted any of these jobs yet but it would be good to be prepared for the future so any advice is much appreciated!
#charges #editing #proofreading
  • Profile picture of the author marciayudkin
    Most people in the market for editing and proofreading want to know ahead of time what something will cost them, even before they've finished writing, because they need a fast turnaround.

    So you're best off choosing a way to charge that enables people to know without a custom quote from you what their assignment will cost.

    And since most people don't have a clear understanding of what the difference is between editing and proofreading, much less the different levels of editing, you need to spell those out explicitly.

    Try finding the websites of people who are longtime members of the Editorial Freelancers Association, a reputable professional organization, to see how they charge and how they explain their services.

    Good luck,
    Marcia Yudkin
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    • Profile picture of the author wordsandthebees
      Originally Posted by marciayudkin View Post

      Most people in the market for editing and proofreading want to know ahead of time what something will cost them, even before they've finished writing, because they need a fast turnaround.

      So you're best off choosing a way to charge that enables people to know without a custom quote from you what their assignment will cost.

      And since most people don't have a clear understanding of what the difference is between editing and proofreading, much less the different levels of editing, you need to spell those out explicitly.

      Try finding the websites of people who are longtime members of the Editorial Freelancers Association, a reputable professional organization, to see how they charge and how they explain their services.

      Good luck,
      Marcia Yudkin
      Thank you, Marcia.
      I will have a look at the Editorial Freelancers Association.

      It's important to me that I'm upfront with my clients from the outset as I think that's respectful to them, plus shows professionalism.

      So with that in mind, I'd love to know if people charged per hour/per word/per article just to get a general consensus of what everyone else is doing

      Thanks so much for your response, very helpful!
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  • Profile picture of the author angiecolee
    Check out Ed Gandia's pricing guide. Also look up Writer's Market (current year's edition).
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    • Profile picture of the author wordsandthebees
      Originally Posted by angiecolee View Post

      Check out Ed Gandia's pricing guide. Also look up Writer's Market (current year's edition).
      Thank you Angie,
      I'll check them out!
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  • Profile picture of the author gingerninjas
    I'd make sure they are providing examples of what they need done and then ensure have an idea of how good or bad the content is before you quote on it. If the client is not a native English speaker you could basically be writing the whole content again, so you should be aware of what you are up for. There is nothing wrong with quoting higher and then if the job comes in at less hours give the client a call ahead of sending your final invoice with the good news. Do ensure you are timing yourself with an app to keep track of your hours as it can be super time consuming. Editing and proofreading are a great way to build your client case and show off your skill set however if you are under cutting yourself for the job you will end up resenting the client. Good luck!
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    • Profile picture of the author wordsandthebees
      Originally Posted by gingerninjas View Post

      I'd make sure they are providing examples of what they need done and then ensure have an idea of how good or bad the content is before you quote on it. If the client is not a native English speaker you could basically be writing the whole content again, so you should be aware of what you are up for. There is nothing wrong with quoting higher and then if the job comes in at less hours give the client a call ahead of sending your final invoice with the good news. Do ensure you are timing yourself with an app to keep track of your hours as it can be super time consuming. Editing and proofreading are a great way to build your client case and show off your skill set however if you are under cutting yourself for the job you will end up resenting the client. Good luck!
      Thanks Gingerninjas!

      That's a great point about asking for a sample. I think it's extremely important that I quantify my quotes so it's always good to have the client's work to refer to and use as an example for them.

      For proofreading, do you have a standard word count per hour that you base your quotes on, or do you think that is a too simplistic way to quote?

      Thanks again for your feedback, it's great to hear how other people are doing it!
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      • Profile picture of the author gingerninjas
        Originally Posted by wordsandthebees View Post

        Thanks Gingerninjas!

        For proofreading, do you have a standard word count per hour that you base your quotes on, or do you think that is a too simplistic way to quote?

        Hi, I don't like to do anything really based on word count in this case as it is so variable. You could have a very simple editing job that takes 20 minutes or an incredibly time consuming piece that takes 3 hours, both the same length of words. It is hard to create a price, however, once I work with a client a few times they get a better understanding that I am offering them quality and they get value for the money they spend. If people are asking for edits based on the words, often they are not seeking quality. When you do a few pieces for a client I usually develop a better understanding of the areas that they need support in and can adjust quotes accordingly. Thanks
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  • Profile picture of the author Ivanmediagroup
    Editing and proofreading are not the same. You should have different prices for each, and always concidere the amount of the job. I would go by the deal, no perticular price, so you can arrange the price according to the amount of work. Also google the prices other offer, so you wouldn't stand out much.
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    • Profile picture of the author wordsandthebees
      Originally Posted by Ivanmediagroup View Post

      Editing and proofreading are not the same. You should have different prices for each, and always concidere the amount of the job. I would go by the deal, no perticular price, so you can arrange the price according to the amount of work. Also google the prices other offer, so you wouldn't stand out much.
      Thanks for the advice.
      I should have stipulated that I meant editing and proofreading as two separate items.
      I have checked Google too but it's always good to know what others with experience are doing too
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  • Profile picture of the author laurencewins
    Although different, I include both in any editing/proofreading I do. If I do writing work, then editing and proofreading is included.
    I charge per job, never an hourly rate.
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    Cheers, Laurence. Writer/Editor/Proofreader.
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