Are you looking for a way to make money from the comfort of your own home? Do you have basic writing skills? If so, the online writing business could be just what you’re looking for.
There are countless companies and websites looking for people to write on all kinds of different topics. For example, companies hire SEO copywriters to get their websites on the first page of the search engines and increase their sales.
Whether you want to make a little extra income in your spare time or develop a full time job as a writer, there are plenty of opportunities to make money from writing online. It can be challenging to get started, but once you’re off the ground it can be a very satisfying and profitable way of making money from home. And there are LOTS of BENEFITS:
The Benefits of Online Writing Jobs Include:
- Much greater freedom and flexibility than a regular job – greater scope to work around family and other commitments
- No travelling to work – saving time AND money!
- Work from the comfort of your own home
- No need to get dressed up for work!
- No boss!! You are your own boss, in charge of yourself!
- Freedom to manage your own time – work when and where you choose.
The kind of paid writing jobs you can get online include:
- Writing articles
- Website content writing
- Technical writing
- Creative writing
- Writing for eBooks and blogs
Whether you’re looking for a part-time job, some easy extra cash, or an entry level writer position, there are lots of ways to access writing jobs online, whatever your level of experience. But how do you get jobs? How do you find enough work to earn the money you need?
Writing expert David Harris offers a few tips in this short video:
Here are some simple guidelines to help you get started…….
1. What Skills and Qualities Will Help You Succeed?
- GOOD BASIC WRITING SKILLS. You do NOT need to be an expert writer when you start out – all writers have to start somewhere and you will develop your writing skills as you gain experience on the job. However, you do need to have a good grasp of spelling, grammer and punctuation. You must be able to write accurately – grammar and spelling mistakes look unprofessional and will definitely jeopardize your chance of success.
- Great COMMUNICATION skills. You must be able to ENGAGE your readers, to write in a way that CONNECTS with people on an emotional level. For example, if you’re writing advertising copy, you need to understand WHY people would want to buy something, what will MOTIVATE them to click the ‘buy now’ button.
- DETERMINATION and MOTIVATION to succeed are essential. You’re highly unlikely to get the first job you bid or apply for – you need to be patient, persistent, focused and determined. Don’t give up just because you don’t immediately succeed in landing a job – it would be very surprising if you did! You might have to make many bids before you actually get a job offer – there’s a lot of competition out there and remember, you’ll be competing against writers who already have some positive feedback and references under their belt, which will give them the edge. The very process of applying for jobs will help you to hone and develop your skills, so see it as a learning process and a challenge. Remember – Rome wasn’t built in a day! Have a positive attitude and your persistence will pay off in the end.
- Having a SPECIAL INTEREST is an advantage.You may already have knowledge and experience in a particular area – if not, it’s a good idea to try to develop expertise in a popular, profitable niche market. This helps to give you an edge over your competitors and a better chance of selling more articles to different outlets. Specializing can earn you a lot more money. If you’re a specialist clients will be more likely to employ you because they know you’ll be familiar with the jargon for their industry and the needs of their customers. There are plenty of profitable niches you can specialize in, such as health, weight loss or dog training.
- Being FLEXIBLE! If you’re going to write for other people you need to be flexible and adaptable. You have to be prepared to adapt and tailor your writing style and tone to meet their particular needs.
- Ability to RESEARCH – any articles you write MUST be adequately researched, so you need to have the ability and willingness to do this background study. However, with the amazing resources of the internet at your disposal, you have a global encyclopedia at your fingertips, so this shouldn’t be difficult for anyone with basic web surfing skills.
- SELF-PROMOTIONAL SKILLS. You MUST be able and willing to SELL YOURSELF to your prospective clients. You need to get used to MARKETINGYOURSELF!You should put yourself across as a serious, professional writer with extremely high standards. You need to be able tosell yourself like gangbusters!
- A LEARNING MINDSET. Be prepared to keep developing your knowledge and skills – this is one of the most important things you can do to enhance your chance of success.
- EVIDENCE OF ONLINE WRITING EXPERIENCE HELPS. When you apply for jobs it’s a good idea to have some examples of online writing to show prospective employers. If you haven’t already done so, think about starting a blog or website of your own. This can be one of the best ways to enhance your credibility and showcase your talent.
- WHEN YOU LAND A JOB, GIVE IT YOUR ALL – DO A GOOD JOB! If you produce great work for your clients, you’re more likely to get referred to people’s friends and business partners, which will reduce the amount of effort you need to put into marketing your own work.
2. How to Get Started FINDING Writing Jobs Online
Method 1: Using the Search Engines
Here are some step by step instructions on doing a targeted search for online jobs:
1. Enter the phrase “write for us” in the search field – include the quotation marks because this will yield more precise results. This will return lots of results with writing opportunities, but will include sites that won’t necessarily want to PAY you.
2. In order to return results for paid writing jobs, try adding +pay, +paid, +payment , +earn money or +for money immediately after the phrase “write for us”, but outside the quotation marks, as follows:
- “write for us”+pay
- “write for us”+payment
- “write for us”+paid
- “write for us”+for money
- “write for us”+earn money
This tells the search engine that you only want results that include the additional word or phrase – it will yield fewer but more targeted results.
3. Adding other search operators can help to refine your search even further. Adding inurl: immediately before your search phrase will only show results with your search term in the url. Adding intitle: will only bring up results for sites with the search term in the title. For example, you could try the following:
- inurl:”write for us”
- intitle:write for us”
4. If you want to search for jobs involving your specific area of expertise, leave a space after the initial search phrase then add the word or phrase denoting your specialists field. For example:
- intitle:write for us” health
- intitle:write for us” weight loss
- intitle:write for us” seo
This will return highly targeted results for people looking for the services of someone who can write about a particular topic.
Method 2: Apply For Jobs on Freelance Bidding Sites
There are tons of freelance websites where you can ‘bid’ for individual writing jobs. These sites list people who need writers to work for them alongside writers looking for work. You can register with most of these for free though some may charge a fee or offer premium services for an additional charge.
Some of the best known of these are:
Freelance writing often involves writing articles for people who need content for their websites or blog pages. As a freelancer you will usually be given an assignment to write an article on a particular subject – you may be given a very detailed remit or just some specific keywords to write about. Getting paid to write articles can be one of the quickest and simplest ways to start earning some income online.
Method 3: Applying for jobs through other job websites
In addition to the bidding websites for freelancers there are many other sites where writing jobs can be found, including:
Method 4: Promote Yourself to Potential Clients:
- Generate Leads Through Your Own Website or Blog – use your own site to promote your writing skills and attract clients.
- Use Social Media (Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn etc.) to build your own network and promote your work to potential clients.
- Send out self-promotional sales letters, targeting companies you feel you will ‘fit’ your skills.
- Ask for referrals – if you’ve done a piece of work for someone, ask that person to refer you to colleagues and friends.
3. Secrets of Making a Successful Bid for Work
- FOLLOW JOB WEBSITE GUIDELINES.If you’re applying through one of the freelance ‘bidding’ sites, make sure you check out their guidelines and follow them to the letter. These sites often have free tutorials – make the most of these and heed their advice.
- CREATE A REALLY COMPELLING PROFILE for any job sites you join, making sure you fill in all the fields. The more information you can provide, the better. If possible, include an online portfolio of your work to show off your talents. Refer to any relevant previous experience and add contact details of your previous employers as references – this really helps to enhance your credibility. Whenever you do a writing job for someone, always keep their contact information and the url where your articles are published – this will be useful evidence of your work and ability.
- Prepare a COMPELLING BID LETTER that is CLEAR, CONCISE AND FOCUSED ON THE CUSTOMER’S REQUIREMENTS. If your bid is long and rambling it may turn prospective clients off. Remember, they’re not interested in YOU – they just want to know what you can do for THEM. So think basic marketing tactics – focus on the BENEFITS you have to offer. Make prospective employers think they might really be losing out if they don’t employ you – make them want to bite your hand off!
- READ THE JOB LISTING CAREFULLY and make sure you refer to some aspects of it in your bid. This demonstrates to the client that you’ve gone to the trouble to take careful note of their particular requirements. You need to reassure them that you understand exactly what they’re after and that you’re responding personally to their request, not just submitting an automatic bid.
- Make your OPENING SENTENCE as compelling as a KILLER HEADLINE – make it utterly attention-grabbing so that it can’t help but catch the client’s eye.
- Only refer to past experience and skills that are RELEVANT to the job you’re bidding for. Refer to previous jobs if possible. If you’ve no specific experience related to the job you’re applying for you will need to emphasise your ability to handle a wide range of different subjects and learn fast – but DO show a genuine interest in the subject of the bid.
- USE YOUR BID TO SHOWCASE YOUR WRITING SKILLS. Make sure it’s really well written and persuasive (with no spelling or grammatical errors!!) Your bid should show off your writing skills and help convince the client that you’re the best candidate for the job.
- GIVE A FIRM COMMITMENT OF YOUR ABILITY TO PRODUCE THE GOODS! Your prospective clients will be looking for competence, speed and efficiency. You need to reassure them that you’ll be able to complete the job successfully and ON TIME!
- COMMUNICATE! Clients like to be kept posted, so reassure them that you’ll communicate with them regularly in the course of the job to keep them updated on your progress.
- MAKE A COMPETITIVE OFFER. Your quote needs to be realistic and reflect your skill-set and experience. You’ll probably need to underbid slightly at first in order to gain experience, get your foot on the ladder and a few jobs under your belt. Once you’ve received some favorable feedback from your first few clients, this will help you to win future bids.
4. Some Cautionary Tips to Help Keep You Safe!
- BEWARE OF SCAMMERS – for example, people who give you jobs and take your work but then don’t pay you. You can protect yourself from fraud by using mainstream bidding sites with robust processes for dealing with disputes between writers and clients to avoid getting ‘burnt’ by unscrupulous individuals.
- RESEARCH YOUR PROSPECTIVE EMPLOYERSand find out if you actually want to work for THEM! Check out what kind of feedback they’ve had from other freelancers and how long they’ve been registered on the website.
- WRITE ABOUT WHAT YOU KNOW – and if you’re not an expert on the subject, make sure you research it thoroughly.
- PROOFREAD, PROOFREAD, PROOFREAD!!! Double, triple check your work for spelling and grammatical errors and typos.
- CHECK OUT LOTS OF DIFFERENT JOB SITES. It may take you a while to find the ones that suit you best.
- BE PREPARED FOR SOME INITIAL DISAPPOINTMENT. Don’t be surprised not to get the first few jobs you bid for. It can be very frustrating to get a succession of refusals, but you need to be prepared for this and determined not to give up at the first few hurdles. Getting off the ground may be hard work, but everyone has to start somewhere. You just have to be persistent and keep trying – and make sure you learn from your mistakes!
- DON’T SELL YOURSELF SHORT. Although you do need to be prepared to work for quite low rates initially, in order to get some jobs and build up your profile, don’t feel you have to work for peanuts – this should NOT be slave labour! You’ll find some jobs posted offering a derisory fee and you’ll also find there are many writers willing to submit rock bottom bids just to get some quick cash. However, decent employers will offer a decent rate of pay and are usually able to distinguish between a good writer and a poor one from their bids. So keep your standards high, offer a quality service and you should eventually be able to make a reasonable income. Don’t settle for mediocre standards just to make a quick buck. Your best chance of making a good income is to build a reputation as a high quality writer.
I wish you success in your search for online writing jobs!