Freelance writing is one of the best ways to start working from home, but finding paid online writing jobs is a struggle, to say the least! Especially as a beginner.
There is so much competition nowadays because freelance writing is such a popular work at home opportunity. There's also so much information out there that it's hard not to get overwhelmed.
No need to stress.
After reading this post, you will have a leg up over most freelance writers, and you'll be well on your way to landing your first writing job. As long as you take action and follow the advice below, you should have no problem becoming a paid writer (the dream).
Keep in mind that you are going to be competing with thousands of other writers with the same goal as you: to get a job.
Don't give up. The only way you lose is if you quit.
Where To Find Online Freelance Writing Jobs
Some of the sites listed below are freelance sites (lots of competition from other writers), and some are job boards (no bidding, less competition). Try to test out both types of sites and see what works best for you.
You've probably heard of this one (previously oDesk). It is one of the largest and most popular freelance sites.
After you sign up and complete your profile (make sure to make it nice), Upwork will automatically highlight ideal jobs for you. As you complete work and get more reviews on your profile, you'll have a better chance of being picked for jobs.
You will either get paid hourly or by the job, via PayPal, Payoneer, and other payment methods.
Heads up: Freelancer has been going downhill recently based on user reports and is no longer recommended. Read this comment for more info.
Freelancer is another one of the largest freelancing websites on the web, connecting over 26 million employers and freelancers.
The way it works is you simply sign up and select the skills that you are bringing to the site. After you do that Freelancer will start showing you jobs that match your skills. When you find a job that you like, you place a bid and hope for the best. Since Freelancer does use the bidding system a lot of people will put low bids on jobs in hopes of landing them.
This method can work but don't low ball yourself, you're a good writer, and your pay should reflect that. Just keep on bidding on more jobs with a price that you think is reasonable.
On constant-content, you can write articles about any topic you want, and then upload them to the marketplace. The marketplace is an area where clients can buy ready-made articles instantly. When you upload your work to the marketplace, it is first analyzed by an editor who checks the work for plagiarism and grammar mistakes. The editor will then either post your work to the marketplace or if there are errors your article will be returned to you to be fixed.
This is a great system for writers for a few reasons:
- You get to write about all your favorite topics.
- You get to choose how much money you want to list your article for, no bidding wars over jobs.
- If you have a good work ethic and can pump out articles on the daily, you can keep uploading them to the marketplace and as they slowly sell it will be like passive income.
Don't worry about the name! Although there are a lot of journalism jobs on this job board, other jobs are also available. Right now there are over one thousand jobs posted so take your time to sift through them, and you could find a gem.
You can also sign up to receive daily job alerts via email which is great cause it saves time.
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Guru is special because not only can you apply to posted jobs just like on other sites, employers can also find you by your profile, look at the previous work that you have showcased, and hire you if they think you are a good fit. They also send you new job matches every day that suit your skills so you don't miss out on anything.
There are nine skill categories in total listed on Guru, so there are more than just writing jobs, go check them out!
BloggingPro has a job board that is full of…you guessed it…blogging jobs! The board is updated daily with new blog writing jobs, freelance writing jobs, and some other stuff too.
Job boards are great because there is no bidding, just apply for jobs that you are a good fit for. There are so many high-quality jobs posted here so definitely don't miss this one.
Yeah, this one is similar to the one listed above, it's another blogging job board.
Big name blogging sites have been known to post on here so don't forget to check back every day. Or just subscribe to the RSS feed to get notified when new jobs appear.
Peopleperhour offers four ways for you to sell your skill, the more the merrier, right?
The first way is simple: build up your profile. Put some pictures on there, videos, whatever you want, the more you have the more a buyer is going to want to buy from you instead of your competition. PPH ranks your profile economically, so the more buying and selling you do, the better your profile will rank on the site.
Another way to get jobs is to search directly (you can get daily job notifications too) and send a proposal, you can submit 15 proposals a month, but you can buy more if you run out.
Next thing is Hourlies. If you've ever heard of Fiverr Hourlies are the same thing, you post a job that you're offering, put up some videos or pictures, and wait for the buyers to come to you.
Final thing: contests. You can browse contests on PPH and submit your entries, but this seems to only be for web developers at the moment.
If you are only going to use one site on this page, this is a good choice.
Freelance Writing can get jobs from a handful of different sites such as Craigslist and Indeed and show them to you all in one place. You can choose which websites you want it to show jobs from and then sort them by the skill the job requires. This could save you a lot of time, and we all know how valuable time is.
They also have a contest section, where you can apply for writing contests and potentially win a lot of moolah.
Writers will love ContentMart because that is all it focuses on, writing.
To get jobs here, you're going to have to work on your profile and get your rank up so you can be more visible. You can also create a writing package where you describe the job you will do and hope that people will come and hire you.
There are actually 129 thousand writers at the time of writing this, as well as 105 thousand clients, and these numbers are going up constantly. You may have a hard time landing a gig here because of all the competition but what's new.
Contena is another job board, which gathers and posts jobs from all over the internet. They post a lot of jobs everyday (20+ just added today while writing this).
The downside of Contena is the subscription price, which is $49.50 per month for the gold membership. This may seem like a lot, but it could be worth it. When you subscribe you get access to tons of jobs and useful tools that Contena provides. It's worth checking it out and maybe saving up.
You thought I forgot about this one, didn't you?
Craigslist may get a bad rep sometimes, but it's a place where many people land their first paying clients. The best part about Craiglist is that it's a place where you can find returning customers. People who keep coming back to you for work.
Remember: If you're looking for remote/work from home jobs, you don't have to stick to just your city on Craigslist, you can check everywhere. SearchCraigslist.org is a good tool for this, it let's you search everywhere on Craigslist.
Other Ways To Find Online Writing Jobs
There are other ways to get freelance writing work without using the sites listed above. They may even suit your style better and bring your freelance writing business to the next level.
You'll have a significant advantage over other freelancers who aren't utilizing these more unorthodox methods.
Start a Website
Starting a blog or website is a must these days for freelance writers. Having your own website makes you look more professional, and it makes it easy for potential clients to get in touch with you.
If you want to start your own website, I'll tell you right now that it's not as hard as it may seem. You can follow my tutorial here:
Make an unsolicited call on (someone), by telephone or in person, in an attempt to sell goods or services.
Find a local business that you think could use some new content on their website, call them up, and offer them your writing services.
It may sound scary, but you will have way less competition with local businesses. There's also a chance that they will tell other people how you helped them, which is free advertising for you!
Did you know you can find writing jobs on social media? Of course, you can!
Try to search #writingjobs on Twitter.
Guest posting, you gotta try it.
What is guest posting?
Writing a post and publishing it on another website or blog (for free).
Guest posting is great because it adds to your portfolio and builds your authority in a specific niche. It's even better if you have your own blog/website because you can link back to your site within the guest post.
A guest post on a popular blog could bring in thousands of new readers and potential clients!
Here's a trick to find websites in your niche that are looking for guest posters.
Do a google search like so: “your niche + write for us.”
Here is what I got from searching “beauty + write for us” as an example:
You should be able to easily find a handful of sites in your niche that offer guest posting using this method.
Try some different combinations and searches as well such as “your niche + guest post,” and you might find that someone has already compiled a list of sites in your niche (if you're lucky) that are looking for guest posters!
Now that you know how and where to find online writing jobs, get out there and start pitching! If you want to stand out from the thousands of other freelance writers and impress the clients you're pitching to, I highly recommend starting a blog to showcase yourself and your work.
Also, if you're someone who likes to learn a bit more about something before diving right in, my friend Gina Horkey runs a course called 30 Days or Less to Freelance Writing Success where she teaches you how to become a paid freelance writer in 30 days or less.
Gina has started her own freelance writing business in the past so she definitely knows what she's talking about and her courses are some of the best around!
In the course you'll get:
- 9 self-paced course modules (50+ individual lessons)
- Built-in follow-up
- 15 enhanced resources
- Custom pitch tracker (and sites to pitch on)
- Pitch like a boss checklist
- Optional private Facebook group
So as you can see, tons of value is included in the course! If you're confident in yourself and willing to invest a bit to get ahead, you can check the course out here.