Are you a budding freelance writer trying to earn a living from your craft on content mills?
Here’s some bad news for you: content mills are not the best places to land online freelance writing jobs. Surprised?
Most beginners end up there, lured by sweet promises of quick and easy money. But is that true? Hardly!
Let’s face it: most clients you meet on content mills are looking for the cheapest deal they can get. They are not shopping for value. You end up pouring hours and hours of your precious time and effort for peanuts.
I started my career writing for content mills, specifically on iwriter where I could earn $1.01 per article. Not only was I getting paid peanuts and working long hours every day, but I also wasn’t sure if the article would get approved.
So, you’re not even sure whether you’re going to receive the stupid $1.01 dollar or your content would end up getting rejected.
Moreover, you’re only given a couple of hours to complete a job which is hardly enough to research and create high-quality content.
Fortunately, content mills are not the only places you can find online freelance jobs.
In fact, big-time, high-paying clients are not looking for freelance writers on content mills.
There are several places where you can market your talents and find high-paying work from home jobs worth your time and effort.
ProBlogger was created in 2004 by Darren Rowse to help bloggers grow their blogs and make money from them.
Since then, the site has carved a niche for itself as an authority site on blogging and a popular marketplace for freelance jobs.
Problogger has been my all-time favorite for landing freelance jobs and, it was also the first job board I landed online writing jobs. I was able to land some of my best, long-term clients on this job board.
I also like ProBlogger, unlike some of the other job boards because you don’t need to be an English native writer to land high-paying online jobs. Whether you’re in the USA, Canada, India or Africa, all you need are the skills and expertise to do what the client wants to be done.
As a beginner, you may find ProBlogger a little more competitive. Some of the freelance jobs will call for more experience than you may have. However, something to cheer about is that new listings are created every day.
Job opportunities are from all kinds of blogging niches. If you are looking for something specific, a keyword search will help you comb through the listings.
Terms of engagement are specific to each job. You can be hired on a contractual, freelance, part-time or full-time basis.
Finally, there are thousands of posts of valuable blogging materials which you can access for free to hone your blogging skills.
If you are more of a versatile writer, BloggingPro may be a better fit for you.
Unlike ProBlogger whose primary listings are paid blogging jobs, BloggingPro has 8 separate job categories, giving freelancers a wider range of work from home jobs opportunities.
Moreover, jobs are sorted by type, that is, freelance, contract, part-time, temporary or paid internship.
Other than that, BloggingPro seems like an iteration of ProBlogger. Clients, mostly businesses, companies, and individuals looking for talented writers, create job listing and invite qualified writers to apply.
Since the job board is updated on a regular basis to include fresh postings, you can expect a somewhat regular stream of online freelance writing jobs opportunities.
BloggingPro also maintains an informative blog and allows freelancers to submit posts.
All Freelance Writing, previously known as All Indie Writers, displays online job ads based on date and pay ranges.
What I like about the job board is that the pay range helps writers to quickly scan through the work from home jobs listings and make selections based on price. Therefore, you don’t waste any time reviewing freelance jobs whose pay range fall way below your minimum writing rate.
All Freelance Writing also highlights ads from multiple third-party sites, putting more jobs in one place.
They also have an RSS feed that can keep you updated on the latest writing gigs posted on the site.
The Freelance Writing site curates work from home jobs for beginners and experts as well as job postings drawn from a couple of third-party sites like BloggingPro and Indeed.com.
It is one of the oldest job sites having started in 1997, and jobs are delivered daily and on a real-time basis.
If you would like to join their rich and diverse community of writers, you can sign up by following the “Become a Writer” link at the top right corner of the website.
You can also make use of the “sort by” and “filter by” tools to sift through the posting and locate what you may be interested in.
Craigslist is far and away the largest online classifieds site.
However, you would be mistaken if you thought it is just a place for people to sell goods and services. Job openings are also posted and if you are brave enough to look, you can find an array of well-paying work from home jobs.
Jobs on Craiglist are categorized according to cities and you’ll have to comb city by city. Then, you’ll find writing jobs under the “Writing/Editing” category.
Nonetheless, be cautious about what jobs you apply for. The site is infiltrated by scammers who post ads for non-existent positions to trick unsuspecting job seekers to submit their resumes which are then used for nefarious purposes like identity theft.
Luckily, there are far fewer scams in the writing category.
An easy way to ascertain whether an ad is legitimate is to highlight, copy and paste a sentence or two of the ad and toss it in Google, using “” quotes around it. Google results will tell you if the poster put up identical posts across multiple cities and states on Craigslist classifieds, in which case, it will most likely be a scam.
If it passes the Google test, other key tip-offs that something may be amiss is if the ad has an affiliate link, or if very little information is provided to direct people to watch a video or visit a scammy-looking site.
Social media sites are the last places a freelance writer can expect to find work from home jobs, right? Think again.
Social networking is the lifeblood of many seasoned freelance writers.
With clever marketing, you can boost your visibility, engage potential clients and get writing gigs.
However, the key to unlocking the power of social media is to have an online portfolio of freelance jobs. There has to be something to drive prospective clients to.
As a beginner, you may not have a portfolio but it would be wise to start building one as soon as you can. In the meantime, make the most of the online writing gigs on social media job boards.
To get started on Twitter, update your profile to reflect what you do, connect with people who smell like prospective clients, engage with their tweets, and make comments on their blogs.
If they follow you back, tweet and retweet some of your work that they may find interesting. Once the ice is broken and they have an inkling of what you do, inquire politely about online freelance writing jobs.
If you have an online portfolio, harness the power of Twitter hashtags to market your services.
The secret of making the most out of hashtags is to go niche and research on how they work. A tool like hashtagify.me can help you pick the best hashtags to use in your tweets. It shows users how popular a particular hashtag is, and gives them a list of related hashtags to core topics.
Having said that, the easiest way to get freelance jobs on Twitter is to hunt for companies and people who collect and tweet freelance writing job opportunities. Alternatively, use hashtags such as #freelancewriter, #writingjobs, #freelanceblogger or #copywriter to search for writing jobs on Twitter.
Many writers neglect the ‘About’ section of their Facebook profiles.
However, an ‘About’ section that says you are a writer, carries a link to your portfolio, and an email address where prospective clients can reach you will open doors.
Facebook also has many freelance writing communities where clients look for freelancers. Hunt for such groups via the search bar, join and network with other freelancers. Participate in discussions and share your experiences. Allow Facebook to send you notification from those groups whenever something new is posted.
Finally, use your Facebook profile to showcase your writing talent and attract prospective clients. Share links to your blog or website and invite people to read and comment.
To many people, Google+ is dead.
But far from it, Google+ is home to many freelance writing communities where freelancers build networks, get decent advice, market their services, and land online jobs from home.
If you want to make headway on Google+, create a client-minded profile, join small communities where clients hunt for writers, and bond with other writers.
Many writers are surprised to discover high-paying work from home jobs exist on Reddit.
Ready to find online freelance writing jobs on the site? Sign up for an account and visit Hire a Writer and writing opportunities subreddits. Then respond to a post in the shortest time possible to boost your chances of landing it.
If you are not on LinkedIn, you are missing out.
Online jobs and networking are closely intertwined. And LinkedIn has the biggest network of professionals.
There are seasoned freelance writers on the platform that you can connect with and ask for advice.
Many clients headhunt writers just by looking at their profiles. Therefore, optimize your profile to give a good account of what you have to offer.
Moreover, LinkedIn has a high-quality job board that any job seeker can tailor to find any job. Use suitable keywords on the ‘Advanced Search’ tab to narrow your job search and located all freelance writing jobs currently listed.
LinkedIn can also send you daily emails notifications of all online jobs that meet your search criteria.
As the name suggests, the Journalism job board mainly focuses on journalism-related gigs. However, editing jobs, copywriting jobs, and blogging jobs are some of the other online jobs advertised. Some jobs are location-based, while others can be completed remotely.
You can search for the kind of job you are looking for using the job title and location.
Since clients pay a minimum of $100 to create a posting, you will hardly find spam postings on this site.
You have arguably the best chance of landing an online job as a freelance writer on Indeed.com owing to the sheer volume of jobs postings.
Apart from the jobs posted directly by clients, Indeed.com allows job seekers to access jobs posted in thousands of job sites, company websites, and newspapers.
As a result, more than 820,000 jobs are posted weekly on Indeed and over 180 million people visit the site every month.
All you need to do is to perform a job search stating the ‘what’ and the ‘where’ of what you are looking for. Indeed.com also allows freelancers to upload their resumes to enable potential clients to find them.
Simply Hired is a Google-like job search engine. It aggregates jobs from company websites, social media, and from all around the web.
You just need to know what you’re looking for and the location.
What I like about this site is that it tells you how many job listings have been added since the last time you logged in. Therefore, you don’t feel like you’re missing out on a great opportunity you didn’t see.
They also boast a one-click job application feature which allows online job seekers with saved resumes to quickly apply for an open position using mobile devices.
When I first started I didn’t know where to look for online jobs. That’s why I landed on content mills. But you don’t have to go through the same path I did. You can fare far much better by looking for work from home jobs in the right places.
And this popular idea that working in content mills is the best way for beginners to gain experience is hogwash. It is a race to the bottom.
I know of many writers who have toiled on content mills for ages with little to show for it, both professionally and financially.
There are plenty of clients on job boards out there who will value your work and compensate you accordingly.
As a beginner, spend most of your time pitching. That means visiting job boards almost every day. That’s how you land your first online writing gig. Good luck!
Hi, I’m Mercy Mmbone. My mission is to help beginner freelance writers find success online. Even if you don’t have a degree, becoming a successful freelance writer is not as difficult as you’d think. The most important thing you’ll need to get started is self-motivation.
I’m honored to have worked with many popular companies including Ring Central and Freelancer FAQs.