work from home

What to Charge as a Freelance Writer

what to charge as a freelance writer

One of the main questions I get asked is what to charge as a freelance writer.

If you’ve searched this question online you’re probably thinking that the answer is as scarce as a mythical creature.

The truth is that there is no set template on what to charge as a freelance writer – which makes it both exciting and frustrating.

Let me tell you a story. When I first started out, I thought that $10 for a 500 word blog post was great. I was so happy to be getting paid for my writing that I didn’t give it too much thought – I was naive. I quickly learned that $10 a pop wasn’t going to pay my bills, especially as it meant that I was actually earning under the minimum wage here in the UK. I started searching for better-paid jobs and increased my prices. These days, I typically earn between $50 – $100 per 500 word post, although that depends on research, topic and if it’s an extended contract.

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What to charge as a freelance writer

In this post, I won’t tell you what to charge as a freelance writer – as I said, there’s no set template or guidelines. But, I can give you a guide to help you set your service pricing so that you can confidently bill your clients without worrying that you’re pricing too low. However, be aware that rates vary depending on your location, niche, service and experience.

Pricing on experience

Usually, pricing for freelance writing content depends on your experience. If you have several years of experience as a freelance writer or you’re a fairly new writer but have vast experience in a certain area, then you’ll be able to charge more than someone with no experience.

One of the best guides for freelance writing rates is from Clear Voice. This guide gives you a rough estimate of what to charge based on your experience and type of content.

This guide is very much in line with what I’ve seen many freelance writers charging, but I’d recommend using it as a basic template, especially if you’re getting started.

A basic pricing guide for freelance writers

However, before you consider your income, take a moment to clearly establish your services.

Pricing per word versus pricing per project

I highly recommend pricing per project as I said in my post on how I went from $15 to $100 per hour.

By charging on a per project basis, you have a better earning potential and your fee is linked to the end result. It’s also a much more attractive process for the client. For instance, if you can write a 500 word article in one hour, some clients may gasp at a $50 per hour rate. Alternatively, $50 for a blog post may seem like a much more attractive prospect.

Your freelance services

Before you consider your rates, it’s important to establish your freelance writing services – what are you going to offer your clients. You might specialise in writing for social media, long-form blog posts or writing product descriptions.

Let’s take a more in-depth look at what you can offer.

Blog posts and articles – these may require research if it’s an extensive article or blog post. If it’s in a niche in which you’re an expert you won’t require much research. It’s important to factor research time in your price.

Pricing example for an article: If we take the Clearvoice guide into consideration, writing a 500-word article for a company based on 8 cents per word would be $40 or around £31. If you’re an experienced writer charging 50 cents per word, a 500-word article would be $250.

Whatever your fee may be for a blog post, you may decide to offer a discounted rate for bulk posts.

Web writing – web writing can include crafting different pages for websites. For example, you might be asked to write a homepage for a service provider. These pages may require a little research on the company you’re writing for.

Social media content – this may include tweets, Instagram content and Facebook posts. These are usually required in bulk, so its likely that you will charge a monthly fee based on X amount of posts.

E-books – An e-book is normally 5000 words plus. Again, pricing on a per project basis is a better option for this type of content.

For editing and proofreading, you might want to check out this guide from the Editorial Freelancers Association on common rates.

Factoring in research

If you’re writing an article or piece of content that requires a lot of research, factor this into your price. Let’s consider that you are writing an article of 1000 words for $100. If you’re comfortable with the topic, you may be able to write this within 2 hours, earning you a nice $50 per hour. However, if you’re writing about a complex topic which requires 5 hours of research, you’re earning far less for your time at just over $14 per hour. If a piece of content requires research, I normally add at least 25% onto the price, obviously depending on how much research is required.

Profitable niches

If you’re using job boards to find work, you’ll likely find that pay differs depending on the niche or topic. It’s well known that common topics like lifestyle, celebrity and home etc are less well paid than those that require more expertise. If you want to maximise your earning potential, take a look at the following profitable niches.






Very specific niches – for example, health insurance for business to business or report writing for the finance industry.

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I hope this post has given you a basic idea of what to charge as a freelance writer. Remember, as your experience grows so does your rate. Let me know if you have any thoughts on this topic in the comments!

How To Make Your First 1k Freelancing

How to make your first 1k freelancing

So, you’ve started freelancing or you’re thinking of transitioning to freelance work. You’re going to want to know how to make money right? Of course, doing something you’re incredibly passionate about is great but unfortunately that’s not going to pay the bills.

Having set myself up as a freelancer with very little guidance – and it really has been me just jumping in at the deep end, I feel I can share my wisdom with you.

Earning you’re first 1k as a freelancer really isn’t that difficult. That hard part is getting started freelancing. Once you’ve cracked that, you’re on your way.

However, there’s a few things that are going to help you…

Price yourself fairly when freelancing

When you start out, you need to know what are you going to charge per hour or project. The best way to do this is to consider how much work you can do in an hour. If that’s say writing a 500 word article then that’s going to be your base price i.e if you’re looking to charge £10 to write 500 words then that’s your hourly rate. Some clients may pay in dollars, so it handy to know the current exchange rate. I always use this site to calculate the difference.

Don’t overprice yourself but increase your fees as your experience grows

You don’t wanna undersell yourself either but if you start charging too much for your services when you start then you’re not going to find much work coming your way. Keep it reasonable but remember that when you become more experienced in a certain area to increase your hourly rate.

Sell yourself

This is your main target as a freelancer. If you don’t believe in your own skills then no-one else will. Obviously you can fake confidence but you need to demonstrate to potential clients that you’re the best person for the job.

Look at different income streams/clients

Ever heard the saying, don’t put your eggs in one basket. I gained a monthly writing gig pretty quick – 5 days per week at decent (ish) money. Two days into the project the gig got cancelled and it was back to the drawing board. A lesson I learnt quick is not to rely on one type of income. I always try to have more than one project going at the same time and I’m always looking for the next one to take on. Be proactive and don’t just stick to one source of income.

Get looking

Actively look for work and don’t wait for opportunities to come to you. Search freelance sites, indeed, gumtree and other sites like the ones listed here.

Consider things you wouldn’t normally do

Can you work in other areas? Write about topics you may not normally consider? It could open up opportunities to other avenues.

Learn new skills

Part of the reason I set up this blog was down to the fact that I needed experience of WordPress. Many potential clients were asking for WordPress experience, so it made sense for me to go and get it. There are loads of free courses on the internet (see said post here) that can teach you new skills and help you to find work in other areas.

Have a personal website or blog to showcase your skills

It doesn’t need to be a source of income in itself but it can help you to open up to potential readers and clients.

Review yourself

Take into consideration your goals. What can you do better? What can you change? I recently found myself at a crossroads and I’m starting to work in a different direction than I previously did. At the end of every month, take stock of what you’ve achieved and ask yourself if you’re doing enough to achieve your goals.

Accept constructive criticism

Receiving criticism is tough but when it comes to your work, you can use it constructively to achieve better results. Learning what you can improve on will help you to grow. If this is something you struggle with then try asking a friend or relative for unbiased feedback first and ask for their suggestions in how you can improve.

Be realistic

Gaining work is always good when you’re self employed but be realistic with what you can achieve. Don’t take on projects that are too big or demanding if you can’t deliver. Think carefully before accepting a project to ensure that you can finish it on time.

If you want to learn more about getting started then read my post on making the leap into freelancing



Web Evaluation – A Work From Home Job

web evaluation earn money online

If there is one thing that is a struggle to find when you first start freelancing, its work from home opportunities. Now, you may already have a few contacts to help you and I mentioned a few places to start looking in this post. However, today I wanted to talk about a real work from home opportunity that exists – web evaluation.

What is web evaluation?

Web evaluation involves a web search evaluator to assess many web pages to consider how they should rank in web searches. The role of a web search evaluator may also be defined as a web judge or internet assessor.

Where can I find web evaluation work?

There are several companies that offer genuine work from home opportunities in web evaluation.

* Appen – Appen or Appen Butler Hill as they are also known offer worldwide positions in web evaluation. You’ll find current vacancies here.

*Leapforce – Leapforce is another company that offers jobs based from home in web evaluation. You can find out more here.

* Lionbridge – There are several job opportunities available at Lionbridge. These include translators, interpretors and crowdsourcing jobs. You can find out more here.

*isoftstone – There are vacancies from transcribers, annotators and crowd workers. You’ll find the current vacancies here.

How do I apply for these roles?

Each company has different requirements. Most will require you have a good internet connection, up to date anti-virus protection and good analytical skills.

I’ve applied to two of these companies and I can assure you that they are quite difficult to get into. Once you’ve applied and got through the first stage, you’ll normally have to pass an exam. These exams are pretty hard going but its basically a trial run of the job you’ll be doing.

With web evaluation, you’ll either be great at it or you’ll struggle. I managed to get to the exam stage at two companies and failed both times. I really found it hard to grasp as each company has a set of guidelines you have to follow when you’re rating websites. If you can understand the guidelines then you’ll probably find it relatively straightforward.

The pay for these companies is above the national minimum wage and you normally have to commit to 10-20 hours per week. You dont get paid for the training/exam stage either. None of these roles are call centre based, so you dont need to worry about answering calls. The job is completed from your home computer.

These are all genuine and real work from home jobs – no scams or pyramid schemes! These jobs are definitely not easy though, so if you’re not prepared to put the work in then these probably arent for you. If you want to earn some extra cash and are up for a challenge then give it a go. I’m pretty sure Lionbridge offer an 11 month contract but the others vary. These may not be long term and as with most freelance work, you dont have the luxury of job security but there are people out there who have done this line of work for many years.

Let me know if you decide to apply. I’d love to know how you get on!