- By Yuwanda Black
- Published 01/28/2011
- Article Writing
If you’re a new freelancer who’s sticking your toes into the waters of online writing jobs, knowing how to charge can be a bit perplexing. I mean, do you charge by the hour, by the job, by the project, by the word – how? Setting your freelance writing rates doesn’t have to be so hard though. All you need is to know what to do. As a long-time freelance writer (since 1993) and an online (SEO) copywriting specialist, following are some tips to help you charge enough so that you’re not working for pennies – which is what so many newbies do. 3 Tips for Setting Freelance Writing Rates for Online Writing Jobs Ask Questions: Get as much info up front from clients as you can. Why? Because time is your greatest asset as an online writer. The longer it takes you to churn out a piece, the more it’s “costing” you if you’re not charging enough. So, find out as much from clients as you can, eg, will they supply keywords, how many words should the piece be, do they expect you to do some social media posting in addition to writing the content, do they want you to include anchor text in your copy, etc. Each and every one of these factors adds more time to each piece you write.
Create a Checklist: One of the best ways to make sure you get all the info you need from clients is to formulate a list of commonly asked questions. This way, every time a prospect queries you about wo
rking for them, you can simply pull it out and run down the list. Figure Time: If you have no idea how long it will take you to, for example, write a 300-word blog post in your defined niche, sit down and write a few – at least three. Calculate your time from the time you start to write, until the piece has been finished and is ready to be posted (these can be used as online writing samples). Remember, time is your greatest asset as a freelance writer. So, your freelance writing rates are heavily dependent on how long it takes you to produce a piece of content. Note where you’re spending the most time: is it on research, writing, editing, proofreading, thinking up a topic to write about. The more experienced you become, the quicker you’ll be able to write. When I first started out as an SEO copywriter, it took me about an hour to an hour and fifteen minutes to write a standard 400-500 word article. Now, I can write most articles in anywhere from 20 to 45 minutes, depending on the subject matter. As an aside, the more experience you gain as an online writer, your freelance writing rates will garner you a higher per hour wage because you’ll be turning out content quicker. Don’t be Afraid to Lose Writing Jobs: If you know what your time is worth, don’t be afraid to lose because someone tells you that your rates are too high.
Your freelance writing rates – if set carefully – are a reflection of your skills, abilities and your time. So stick by them.