To make money online from writing, build a portfolio that attracts clients

December 1, 2022, 0 Comments

Make Money Online from Freelance Writing (2023)

If you’re a creative, you probably dream of making money online from freelance work. For writers, the dream is more tangible than ever in 2023. With the rise of digital media and demand for content, combined with the now much more common option to work from home for freelancers and regularly employed staff, there are plenty of opportunities to make money from writing online.

In the last decade, freelancing has become increasingly popular due to its flexibility and potential for high earnings. In the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, more companies than ever are looking to outsource their content needs on an as-and-when-needed basis rather than employ an in-house team. As such, there is plenty of opportunity to make money as a freelance writer.

The freelance writing business isn’t always easy, but it can be immensely rewarding financially and emotionally if you have ambition and tenacity. Here’s what you need to know if you want to make money by writing online in 2023.

5 Tips to finding freelance writing jobs online

1. Develop a Specialty: If you specialize in one or two topics, such as business, finance, health and wellness, travel, or lifestyle, it’s easier to get noticed and establish yourself as an expert writer. This will help you stand out from the competition and become more attractive to potential clients.

2. Build a Professional Portfolio: A professional portfolio is essential when trying to make money writing online. This should include examples of your best work, such as blog posts, articles, ebooks, and other pieces demonstrating your skills. Make sure your portfolio is up to date and that potential clients can view it easily.

3. Network: The best way to land writing gigs is by networking with other writers, editors, and publishers. Reach out to people in your field or industry who may be willing to refer you for work or offer advice on how to make money from freelance writing.

4. Use Social Media: Social media is a great way to grow your network and reach more potential clients. Create accounts on various platforms such as Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook, and Instagram and post regularly about your writing services or publish sample pieces that show off your skills. Share your portfolio, shout out new and existing clients, and generally make yourself the centre of attention.

5. Utilize Online Platforms: Countless online platforms allow writers to showcase their skills and bid on jobs. Sites such as Upwork, Freelancer, and Fiverr are great places to start when looking for writing opportunities. It can be slow to get started, but once you’ve completed your first few offers at a reduced rate, you can increase your prices and start making a real income from freelance writing.

With the right approach and determination, you can make money from writing online in 2023. Don’t be afraid to take risks, network, and be open to new opportunities. Now, of course, these brief tips barely scratch the surface of how to become a successful freelance writer, so below, we have offered an extensive FAQ on general questions about freelance writing that we receive here.

The Ultimate FAQ for Freelance Writers

How do I start a freelance writing business?

Freelance writing has a very low barrier to entry. Not only is it something that anyone with general writing skills can do, but there are many amazing tools out there that can help you sharpen your game, such as Grammarly, Jasper, and SurferSEO. In terms of an actual business – you’ll most likely be starting small, and there will be no need to register as a business until you earn over £1000 in a year. At this point, you’ll be reaching your UK online trading allowance and will need to pay tax and register as self-employed with HMRC. Rules will differ if you are a US writer, but regardless of where you’re located, it’s easy to become a freelance writer.

Where can I find freelance writing work?

Freelancers find work in a variety of ways. A great way to get started is on freelancer platforms, such as Upwork and Fiverr, which have a wealth of job opportunities. You can also search for writing jobs on websites such as Indeed and Glassdoor or even approach businesses directly via email with a pitch or targeted query letter. Social media offers another great platform for finding work. You can join writing-focused groups and post your services or reach out to potential clients directly through messaging. Do not underestimate LinkedIn’s power to find freelance work.

What does a Freelance Writer do?

First and foremost, of course, they write. What they write about depends on their niche and clients’ needs. Some writers specialise in content that helps their clients websites get found by Google and other search engines, called Search Engine Optimisation or SEO writing. Others specialise in persuasive writing, called Copywriting or material designed to grow interest without directly promoting a product or brand, called Content Marketing.

Of course, there are many other types of writers out there, from ghostwriters who write books or articles on behalf of another person and receive no credit to scriptwriters who write for broadcast television and YouTube shows. And let’s not forget that any author you can imagine is a freelance writer! You could even be a specialist freelance resume writer or enter any other freelance writing niche that you can imagine. The possibilities are endless.

Is freelance writing easy?

While the barrier to entry for freelance writing is low, it is necessary to hunt for freelance writing jobs, they will rarely come to you unasked. While online platforms make it easier for you to begin your freelance writing career, you’ll need to actively look for work and polish your portfolio before becoming a successful freelance writer. Expect to face roadblocks on the way to becoming a full-time freelancer, but you can make it happen with hard work and dedication.

You may find that you wish to branch out and become a freelance copywriter or content marketer. You may also consider related writing opportunities, such as editing jobs, journalism jobs, or working on your own blog. However you choose to use your writing skill, there will be clients ready to hire writers like you.

Can I rely on freelance platforms to give me enough work?

Yes and no. Let’s be clear. With some dedication and plenty of great customer service, you can get your score up on any of these freelance platforms to a level where buyers will actively approach you and ask you to write for them. For some freelancers, this can result in six-figure incomes from writing online. But don’t put all your eggs in one basket, as you are a slave to the website’s algorithm, and it’s completely possible, and quite common, for busy and successful writers to suddenly find themselves with little or no work to do from their preferred platform.

How do I get paid to write?

How you get paid will depend on how you are working. If you work via a freelancer platform, the platform will collect the funds from the client and deliver them to you after delivery, minus their cut. If you work directly with the client, you will need to agree upon payment terms and how they will send you the funds. Most freelance writers use PayPal or bank transfers as their preferred method of receiving payments for online writing jobs. Depending on who the client is and the expected workload, you may take a full payment upfront, a partial payment (retainer), or expect payment after delivery.

Can I work from home as a writer?

Absolutely! In fact, for most writers, this is the norm. Many freelance writers work from the comfort of their homes, and you only need an internet connection to get started. You can work around your family’s schedule or other commitments and discover newfound flexibility in bringing in extra income for yourself.

How much do writers make online?

Exactly how much you can earn from writing online will depend on your ability, the clients you can attract and the writing you are doing. Experienced writers can expect to earn anywhere from $50-$80 per hour, while beginner writers may start off earning closer to $20-$30 per hour. For those who start out on the freelancing platforms, expect to sell your soul for $5 per 500 words to begin with.

The overall amount you make will also depend on your work hours and how many clients you have. As you can imagine, Coca-Cola asking you to create 500 words of carefully crafted copywriting is likely to pay very different to writing a 1000-word blog post for a newly formed company. To attract these larger, higher-paying clients, you will have to work your way up, building a reputation as you go.

Is it hard to be a Freelance Writer?

One of the hardest parts of being a freelance writer is knowing how to start as a writer and where to find paying jobs. With a saturated market and so many new writers entering the industry, it can be hard to stand out from the crowd. You will also need to familiarize yourself with the most popular freelance writing platforms such as Upwork, Fiverr and Freelancer.

The key to success is dedication, perseverance, and hard work. You need to be confident in your writing abilities and establish a solid portfolio to attract better-paying clients. As you build up experience, grow your profile, and hone your craft, you will see the rewards of being a freelance writer as more work opportunities come your way.

When work dries up, it can be hard to motivate yourself to hunt for new clients or complete those writing tasks that you’ve been keeping on the back burner, but it’s the freelancers who can motivate themselves during these times that will succeed.

How do I make my first $/£1000 as a freelance writer?

Assuming that you’re starting from the beginning and do not have contacts within a niche industry with which you are familiar, you’ll need to pitch yourself to clients or use freelancing platforms.

On sites like Fiverr, Upwork and Freelancer, expect to earn $5-$10 per article you write. Once you’ve got some positive reviews and get busier, you can begin to increase your prices. For many writers, $40 to $50 is the sweet spot where they attach enough customers to keep them busy but make a moderate income from their writing. If you are specialised within a niche and can prove that your work is of a higher calibre than those who would otherwise skim information from other websites, you can command a higher price for your article writing.

Is Upwork or Fiverr best for finding freelance writing jobs?

Each freelancer writers platform has its pros and cons. In the case of Upwork, it is a great site for finding higher-paying clients. However, you do have to pitch yourself to the clients and convince them of why you are the right writer for them. This can seem daunting and unnatural for a new freelance writer, while seasoned pros will be more than happy to pitch their services. You can make money with writing, but it requires a little persistence in the early days before you’ll see much of a payoff.

On the other hand, Fiverr is geared more towards those just starting out in freelance writing. Here you will find clients willing to pay much lower rates for your writing, usually $5-$50 per article. Your listings are shown in a competitive marketplace, so it can be hard to stand out, but it also requires no active chasing of the work. Just reply to the messages you receive. As such, it is a great way of getting your feet wet with some practice while still making a small income from your writing.

Regardless of which platform you choose, the key is to focus on building a portfolio and reputation that will attract more clients in the future. As such, it is essential to do good work wherever you go to grow your experience and develop a freelance writing career.

How do I start a writing career?

Starting a writing career can seem daunting, but it is not impossible. It will require dedication and hard work to reach the desired level of success. Here are some tips to get you started:

1. Get familiar with online freelancing platforms such as Upwork, Freelancer and Fiverr.

2. Research the marketplace and get a feel for what types of writing jobs are available.

3. Develop your portfolio by creating samples that showcase your skills and expertise.

4. Set up profiles on these platforms, list your services and set realistic rates for yourself.

5. Start bidding on projects that interest you and give you the opportunity to learn new skills.

6. Network! Collect customer data, reach out with ideas, and begin to build a direct client list.

What is the highest-paid writing job?

The highest-paid writing job will depend on the writer’s skill level and niche. For instance, a freelance copywriter in the pharmaceutical industry may be able to command a rate of up to $200 per hour, while an experienced script doctor working on high-budget films could earn thousands of dollars for their work.

In general, however, the highest-paid writing jobs tend to be in specialised fields such as academia, legal writing, medical writing, and technical writing. These writers are usually highly experienced professionals who understand complex topics in great detail and can communicate those ideas clearly and concisely. Freelance writers with a deep knowledge of their niche may also be able to command higher rates than generalist writers.

In addition, some types of writing, such as science writers, grant writing and proposal writing, tend to be higher-paying because they require great attention to detail and meticulous research. Experienced freelance writers may also be able to secure higher rates by offering boutique services such as editing, proofreading, website copywriting, and social media content creation. Ultimately, the highest-paid writing job will depend on a variety of factors, and each writer must assess what works best for them.

We hope that this guide has given you a little inside into how to make money with writing online. Making money as a writer has always been a labour of love at times, with a need to spend time and effort creating material before any money is earned. In essence, it is one of the oldest forms of passive income, as many authors will attest. What you create today can bring in an income for years to come, so while making money as a writer is often overlooked as an immediately profitable source of income, writing for money can prove very profitable over time.

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