Making Money Writing Articles

14 replies
Hey Guys

Just a question, I've seen a lot of people writing articles on here. Now I'm a native UK writer/speaker and have studied both literature and language in a variety of different forms and believe that I have what it takes to become a full time writer.

Just a few questions:
  • What can a native UK writer charge per 500 words?
  • How much business can I expect to get?
  • Are there other sites apart from WF I can advertise on? I'd like to avoid placing all my "eggs in one basket" sort of thing
Any other advice is appreciated - I want to get writing right away to be honest, but need to find a bit of income for the initial $20 thread to see how it works out here at WF. I'm also looking into the possibility of investing some of the money I have elsewhere, into different IM ventures.

#articles #making #money #writing
  • Profile picture of the author Alexa Smith
    Originally Posted by ADRD View Post

    What can a native UK writer charge per 500 words?
    It depends in which markets you choose to compete.

    When I first started off, in 2008, I made the mistake of charging only $25 for an article (they were mostly a little longer than 500 words, admittedly), and this was a very bad move for me. Trying to increase the prices is like starting again from scratch. In my naivety, my idea was to start cheap, get testimonials and interest, and then increase prices.

    As I gradually learned, it doesn't work that way, with article writing. And there are reasons for that (which I didn't understand at all, at the time).

    Originally Posted by ADRD View Post

    How much business can I expect to get?
    It depends on your marketing skills and your website (and a little on your writing skills, too, but not always as much as you'd think, given what you've said about yourself, as yours will obviously be more than adequate.)

    Originally Posted by ADRD View Post

    Are there other sites apart from WF I can advertise on?

    At the very bottom end of the market it's so saturated that by the time you get down to about $5 per article, there are almost as many writers as customers. (At the higher price-bracket end of the market it's exactly the opposite.) This is why all the people who reply to threads here from new members asking "What can I do easily to make some money online?" by telling them to write articles for marketers aren't really helping them at all.

    In the $0.01/$0.02-per-word market, there really are nearly as many service-providers as customers (and there are reasons for that, too), so that's actually the most competitive and difficult market in which to earn anything.

    These posts/threads explain why, in some detail (and quite a bit of other stuff which may also interest and/or help you) ...

    What's The Deal With WF Writers?
    Writing Articles - I'm Done
    How much can you make writing articles?
    How do I make money writing articles???
    Would you still do freelance writing?
    Can anyone suggest good pay, high quality writing jobs?
    Content Writing - Still Viable?
    Are There Many Clients Who Pay $50/Article?
    The appropriate rate for written content is ?
    You must be a superstar professional writer BUT I can only pay you $2 per article - say WHAT?
    Any point in trying to find clients on Warrior Forum..?
    Is it hard to make 30K a year from writing?

    And if you're planning to "write for money", these resources may be useful (but maybe only after you've decided in which markets you want to compete for work, depending on both your literacy and marketing skills) ...

    Jennifer Mattern's blog
    Carol Tice's blog
    Freelance writing jobs (minmum payment requirement of $50 per article to be listed there)
    Free report on how to attract new freelance writing clients during a recession
    The Renegade Writer Blog
    The "Irreverent Freelancer" blog
    The Well-Fed Writer: Lucrative Commercial Freelance Writing - Land Lucrative Freelance Writing Jobs
    Words on the Page.

    I haven't, myself, clicked on all of these for some months, so apologies in advance for any defunct links, above (which there easily could be, by now).

    Make sure you understand the available markets clearly before trying to derive income from them: overall, it's rather a counter-intuitive market, for all the reasons explained in many of the posts/threads linked to above.

    The difference between good writers who earn a lot of money and good writers who struggle is their marketing skills and understanding of the market.

    Don't think of it as "creating work for yourself". It's much more than that. You'll be "setting up a business in which you're self-employed", and to do that successfully, you have to understand the market. There are many writers who've been struggling for years because they dont. They have great difficulty getting $5/$10 writing jobs and are terrifed of increasing their prices because they think they'll go under. Don't become one of them.

    I'm unapologetically "going on about it" because I see from your sig-file that you want to write $5 articles, so you need someone to go on about it, because that isn't a way forward - it's just setting off in the wrong direction.

    And good luck!
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  • Profile picture of the author ADRD
    Thanks Alexa, that's brilliant advice.

    I think this is something I may need to put a little bit more thought into rather than just diving straight into the market. Do you think it would be beneficial to write some smaller articles (just content/blog article) as initial investment?

    Just wanting to go into something online and quit my day job really. I know it's not gonna happen overnight, but it's a goal atleast! I think I might look at other options aswell, just not sure what direction I want to head in!

    Again, many thanks for the advice. I'll take it upon myself to learn as much as I can before jumping in!

    Native English Writer

    Currently looking for people who require 3-5 articles per day (2000-2500 words). Please contact me for a sample!
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    • Profile picture of the author Alexa Smith
      Originally Posted by ADRD View Post

      Do you think it would be beneficial to write some smaller articles (just content/blog article) as initial investment?
      I think probably not, and if you have a job at the moment, you're not desperate for the odd $5 and don't need to (maybe)?

      "Smaller articles" tend to be the market you should be avoiding.

      When you read through the list of threads linked to above, you'll learn that 400-500-word articles are the ones whose customer-demand is led by "SEO considerations" from people who don't understand how to use content at all, and those are emphatically not the customers to whom you should be catering.

      Don't imagine that "that's a way of starting off and getting some experience". It isn't, in any meaningful sense. It's a way of starting off something different and getting some experience that won't really be helpful to you in any senses worth talking about, if you actually want to make a living from it.

      Originally Posted by ADRD View Post

      I'll take it upon myself to learn as much as I can before jumping in!
      You're saying the right things, anyway.

      People don't fail at this because they "never take action": they fail because they set off in the wrong direction through lack of education, lack of understanding the markets, and the entire "attitude perspective" wisely explained above by Travlinguy.

      It's up to you whether you display on your site the type of articles for which people who "want content backlinks" pay $5/$10 each, or the type of articles for which people who syndicate their content pay $150/$200 each (yes, some do, really - and those are the ones who come back for more. Obviously they require a different kind of article in the first place. And a different length).
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  • Profile picture of the author travlinguy
    You ain't gonna like this answer.

    Forget about writing here, at least for now. You've already begun your journey down the road to despair by offering articles for $5. Is that how good you feel you are? Judging by the structure of your post I'd say you're not some low rent $5 writer. So stop acting like one.

    Go about it right. Put up a proper Website with at least 20 excellent samples of your writing. Then when you're seeking work you can send people to have a look at your portfolio. $5 writers don't have portfolios though professionals always have them.

    Most of this is a mind trip. First you need to feel you're good enough to earn real money. Once you do you won't have any trouble competing in markets where good pay is offered. Personally, I'd forget about placing ads in venues (like this one) where people are accustomed to paying peanuts. You might make some lunch money but you'll never earn a living that way.

    Instead start forging alliances with Webmasters and designers. Tell them you'd be willing to be their "on call" writer. That way when they get a design gig you'll be the guy/gal that will be writing the content. Start at 5¢ per word and don't stop until you're well above 10¢ per word.

    The alternative if you start out in the cellar is a long, frustrating journey of compromise.
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    • Profile picture of the author John Coutts
      What Alexa and travelinguy said above ^^^. I can't add much to that.

      If you want to earn $50 (or whatever) for a piece of writing, then ask for it. It really is that simple, and the amazing thing is, it works too. You have to position yourself, both actually and mentally, as a well-paid writer to become a well-paid writer.

      Also, never stop promoting yourself. As a writer, you are the product, and you'll only keep making sales when you keep promoting yourself.

      The mistake that so many make is they go into a frenzy of promotion, which gets them booked up solid with work for several weeks, then they stop promoting and work hard. A few weeks later they suddenly realize they only have enough work left for the next two days and they panic. Then they go into another frenzy of promotion, and the cycle starts all over again.

      If they're lucky, they'll find work quickly, but all too often they don't. A better way is to constantly promote yourself. It will allow you to pick and choose only the best kind of well-paid work, and you'll always be fully booked up as you'll also avoid the "feast and famine" cycle that so many stagger through.

      Oh, and hanging around content mill sites and online job boards is not promotion.

      Good luck!

      Write System - superior web content
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  • Profile picture of the author ADRD
    I may not like the answer, but that doesn't make it wrong or of any less value. I'm happy to pick up on any constructive feedback.

    I'll be taking all advice into consideration. I suppose when you thinking about it, writing 10,000 words for $100 isn't really the best of jobs is it? Haha, I think I'll take a day off work to setup a website and write some samples so I can display them alongside prices. I may offer my services here, but only to the ones who want to pay for what they get - Many thanks for the advice.

    If anyone wants me to write a sample or two, I'd be more than happy to do so as long as I can publish it to my website once it's build.


    Native English Writer

    Currently looking for people who require 3-5 articles per day (2000-2500 words). Please contact me for a sample!
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  • Profile picture of the author ADRD
    Both have been great sources of advice, as I'm sure you would have been should you have arrived a little earlier! I'm working right now yeah, and I have about $150 to be putting into a project. Just want to hit the nail on the head first time really, but don't we all. I'm going to take writing up as a project, definitely, however I may pick something else up and split my investment over two projects and see which I prefer more.

    Brilliant advice, I was reluctant to start posting, but I'll be sticking around!

    Native English Writer

    Currently looking for people who require 3-5 articles per day (2000-2500 words). Please contact me for a sample!
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  • Profile picture of the author danr62
    I will add to Alexa's excellent list of websites with two more of my own recommendations:

    Leaving Work Behind
    Be a Freelance Blogger - Learn to make REAL money blogging for hire

    The last one has a free report of sites that pay $50 and up for guest posts and such.
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    • Profile picture of the author janicej
      There are many great sites where freelance writers can find well-paid work, especially when you're a native speaker from the UK.

      Isn't it better though to just create your own blog/website for your article writing service, adding a portfolio to it and promoting it so that clients will find you? That gives you more authority and allows you to easily present potential customers with your offer.
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  • Profile picture of the author laurencewins
    You have been given some terrific advice from some respected members of this forum.
    How much you make is up to you. You have to take control and be the professional.
    You also need to appreciate that it takes time to build a credible reputation.
    I have been doing this for around 4 years now and I do see fairly consistent income but it has taken a lot of hard work and that work never ends.

    If you're only in it for the short term, you might as well just do whatever you want.
    But if you're serious, take the advice offered and run with it.

    Cheers, Laurence.

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  • Profile picture of the author writeaway
    Don't let anybody discourage you. Rates vary. There's always space for a great writer in the online content industry. As long as you focus on providing a good value, you should do fine. Make sure you love what you do and it will never feel like work.

    Think about it, you are going to get paid to exercise your research, writing, and composition skills. Talk about an awesome opportunity. Getting paid to expand your mind and continuously expand your knowledge. Whether you earn $1 a word or $0.001 a word, the key to this game is to focus on the real reward-getting paid to expand your horizons and express yourself. To me, writing is like breathing and I wouldn't trade writing for anything in the world. It is this sense of GRATITUDE that pushes me forward and upward.

    I wish you the best!
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  • Profile picture of the author tpw
    What you can charge as a freelance writer is in direct proportion to the amount value you give to your client and the amount of revenue that your writing can bring to your client's bottom line.

    In other words, if you are only creating about $20 value for your writing client, then $5 an article is about the best you can hope to charge.

    If on the other hand you are creating thousands of dollars in value for your client, how much should you be really charging your clients? I'd expect that you should be able to charge your client about 25% of the amount that your client can generate as a result of the content you create for him/her.

    It is not always possible to know the real value that you bring to your client's bottom line, but if you can open a line of communication with your client after the sale, you will start to get a solid handle on that number over the next couple months.
    Bill Platt, Oklahoma USA,
    Publish Coloring Books for Profit (WSOTD 7-30-2015)
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  • Profile picture of the author ADRD
    Thanks for all the input, I've had a read through and it looks valuable!

    Native English Writer

    Currently looking for people who require 3-5 articles per day (2000-2500 words). Please contact me for a sample!
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  • Profile picture of the author tmtechno
    $5 for 500 words ? why not ? But do the math also. How many articles you can realistically churn out in a month (assuming you have a monthly target) ? Does that meet your revenue goals? Unless you are looking for pocket money, the numbers do not look encouraging.
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