As online employment possibilities continue to grow, one of the areas that has seen the most growth — and is constantly in high demand — is writing for money. The occupation is as broad as the English language is complex, and it offers writers of all skill levels the opportunity to earn money for their work. These occupations range from writing instructional online articles to crafting resumés and even writing electronic books to be downloaded by customers at a later date. And each of them pays relatively well for the amount of work involved.
Possibilities for the Talented Writer
All writing is not created equal, and the internet is full of possibilities that cater to a wide range of interests and experiences. This helps to ensure that various kinds of writers are catered to equally in this growing home employment category — and ensures that a well-diversified pool of available writing jobs will be in constant supply of income-earning possibilities. Among the leading types of writing online for money:
- Article Writing
If you have in-depth knowledge of one or more specific topic areas, it’s easy to start a career in online article writing. These articles are typically used for a variety of purposes: blog posts, informational articles, how-to guides, and search engine optimization articles that focus on keywords. They’re typical several hundred words long and, while most articles provide a rough guideline for writers, they respect the creative process and allow each writer to go in their own direction during production. That ensures unique and quality content, and it’s the way the internet gets millions of pages of new content on a daily basis.
- Resumé Writing
For the business-minded professional who is looking to save future job candidates from some of the industry’s most notorious resumé-writing mistakes, this option is a great one for extra income or as a primary source of income altogether. Resumé writers bring their experience in the business field to other people on a mostly freelance basis and help them prepare professional resumés that will put them ahead of the competition. This occupation not only uses creative writing techniques when emphasizing a candidate’s skills and experiences, but also business-related knowledge of which skills are most relevant — and most worth emphasizing — for each job that is being sought by the candidate.
- Book Writing
Ever wanted to be a published author? Many writers have long dreamed of the day that their work would be available in book form, purchased by the masses for its informative or engaging content. But the process is no longer dependent on publishers; instead, the internet has made it possible for individual publishers to write their own electronic books, or eBooks, and have those books sold in independent online bookstores. Their work can be downloaded to eReaders, portable tablets and smartphones, and traditional computers alike. Each time a copy of their work is purchased, writers earn a small bit of residual income by way of royalties. It’s a great way to make secondary income and the talented book-writer can turn this into a major source of annual salary, as well. And there’s no limitation to the type of content that can be produced: fiction and non-fiction works are treated and enjoyed equally.
How Pay is Determined For Freelance Writers
There are two types of income that a writer may earn when they write for money online: linear income and residual income. While linear income is the predominant form of payment in the industry, those who write and publish their own electronic books will have access to residual funds as copies are sold.
- Traditional (Liner) Income for Writers
When a writer signs up with a website to write articles or resumés, they will typically be asked to submit at least one sample of their best work. Their website of choice will then evaluate any samples they have submitted and they will be judged based on their skill level. Each skill level, whether it is basic, intermediate, or advanced, has its own rate of pay. The more experienced and talented a writer is, the more they can expect to be paid for their work.
Typically, these sites work on a per-word or per-article basis. The most popular form is, indeed, a per-word payment scenario. Writer will be paid anywhere from half a cent to several cents per word that they write. The articles that they select will often have a minimum and maximum word count, and they’re free to work within those confines. As their experience increases, their pay will increase as well.
Other sites pay a simple, flat fee on a per-article basis. These articles, too, often have minimum and maximum word counts but the author will not be punished for writing an article that is closer to the minimum amount of words expected. This setup is typically reserved for more advanced writers, and can be harder to find online, but those who have a strong command of the English language can use this more lucrative and lenient pay structure to their advantage.
- Non-Traditional (Residual) Income Opportunities
Those writers who produce a book and sell it online for income will typically be paid a small amount for initially submitting the work to an independent online bookstore. Following this payment, they will continue to earn a small royalty payment each time a book is sold by the bookstore. This tends to be more of a long-range earning plan than the linear earning possibilities of article sites, but many writers prefer to combine the two income options so that they have a steady stream of income throughout the year — rather than suffering through dry periods where very little work (thus, income) is readily available.
Earnings Potential When Writing for Money
The amount of money an author can make by writing online articles and electronic books is truly up to the author themselves. This is because each article written has its own pay-out amount, and each book has its own royalty fee payment schedule. The more work that an author competes, the more they can expect to be paid.
It is quite possible for a freelance online writer to make a sustainable primary income simply by putting their command of the English language to work. But, like any job, they will have to commit the proper amount of time — anywhere from four to twelve hours per day — if they wish to make something close to the median American wage.
Make Money Writing: Getting Started
The number of websites willing to pay authors for their work is only on the rise, especially as search engines have raised their standards on websites who engage in “keyword spam” rather than providing well-written content to their readers. That being said, every aspiring writer will need to have several samples of their work and would be well-advised to pick a few content areas where they are most knowledgeable and can easily write articles that appeal to a large audience.
And, before selecting a website, it’s wise to research what their quality standards are — and what they’ll pay an author of each skill level. The goal of an online writer is not just to write for money, but to write for the most money. For many people, this will become a primary occupation. It is wise, then, to pick the best online writing company with the most robust selection of articles before committing to this growing occupation on a full-time basis.