Why in the world would you want to be a starving artist?
This was one of the most common reactions I got when I took a break from writing for television to focus on freelance writing instead. And that was from family and friends.
In their heads, they were probably imagining that I was turning my back on any semblance of stability.
That I was going to live from paycheck to paycheck whilst pursuing my creative dreams.
The truth is, you get out of freelance writing what you put into it. And while some might not earn big bucks, those who know where to look and are strategic could have a lucrative career.
It’s also about building and nurturing relationships with clients so that they’ll give you projects regularly.
So the starving artist archetype really needs to take a back seat. Because with freelance writing, you won’t have to choose between fulfilling your creative potential and paying the bills.
You can do both. And work at your own pace to suit your lifestyle. It’s even more relevant now that most of us need to work from home, since freelance writing can always be done remotely.
To get ready for your journey into the freelance writing world, I’ve listed the best freelance writing websites to help you make money online.
Our Top Picks for the Best Freelance Writing Websites
Entry-Level Starting Portals: Fiverr and People Per Hour
If you’re just getting started in the freelancing game, Fiverr and People Per Hour will help you get your foot in the door.
All you have to do is create a profile and make a list of the services you offer. Then you’ll be notified if there are any interested parties.
Both are seriously easy to use as well.
Here’s what you can expect from Fiverr and People Per Hour:
Fiverr is a popular micro jobs website, and getting started here is free. On this platform, you can create your profile, and list your offerings for writing jobs.
Fiverr started out as a platform for any type of freelance work that would cost potential clients a fiver. It has since evolved, and it’s now a bustling hub for freelancers, especially in the creative field.
Needless to say, freelancers who get projects via Fiverr get paid far more than just a fiver. It’s also worth noting that even reputable agencies use Fiverr in hopes of stumbling upon hidden gems, so there’s a lot of potential there to find a decent writing job.
Fiverr also makes your life easier by having its own payment system. Plus it’s so flexible in the headaches of getting paid, and you have an option to change your writing price at any time.
To join People Per Hour, you’ll need to complete an online application form to join the freelancer community. Every application is reviewed and approved by their moderation team, ensuring that freelancers can meet their standards.
Once approved, you’ll gain access to a whole host of projects from their international client community. You can then create your profile and offer your services to potential clients.
People Per Hour makes it a breeze for freelancers to review bids and offers. There are also built-in communication channels that can help you move projects along the pipeline.
The website also runs contests where creatives can show off their work while competing for projects.
For both Fiverr and People Per Hour, having an attractive and user-experience-maximised profile is key. It’s crucial to be crystal clear on your level of expertise and experience, as well as the types of writing projects you can do.
It will be good to check out the profile of top-rated writers on these platforms to get to grips with what works and how you can make your own profile stand out.
This blog post gives some helpful tips on getting started.
Experienced and Intermediate Freelance Writer Hubs: Upwork and FlexJobs
If you’ve had a few years of experience and already have a decent portfolio, then you could level up to using UpWorthy or FlexJobs.
They’re a bit more advanced than Fiverr and PeoplePerHour in certain aspects.
For instance, there will be times when you would have to submit proposals on Upwork before even landing a gig. And you’d need to pay a small subscription fee to access full details of a job on FlexJobs.
Here’s a more in-depth look at both freelance writer hubs:
In Upwork, potential clients post a job and freelancers who are interested in the project submit their proposals.
You can list an hourly rate or fixed price for projects whether you’re offering logo design or content creation services.
The potential client will then compare bids, reviews and prior work of all the writers who submitted a proposal. Then conduct interviews with a shortlist before hiring the best fit.
It’s as if you’re an agency competing with others for the same project. And this is good because it gives you a feel of how things play out in the agency world. This will also massively help you when the time comes for you to set up your own agency.
But remember that Upwork takes a percentage of your pay, so make sure to take this into consideration when submitting bids.
If you’re looking for a job portal that is secure with 100% legit projects, then look no further.
In FlexJobs, all freelance job listings are screened and verified. You’ll get an ad-free and junk-free job search for high-quality remote and flexible jobs.
This also means you won’t have to worry about scams, low-paying gigs or delayed payments. And they have in-house researchers who can match you with the best-suited opportunities for you in 50 different categories- from part-time to full-time, from associate level to executive and more.
As mentioned earlier, you’ll need to sign up for a paid subscription to get access to the job details. But the small fee you’ll have to pay gives a lot back in terms of value, as the platform gives get excellent support with online courses and events, articles, etc.
The challenge in using Upwork and FlexJobs lies in the fact that you would have to compete with a lot of other writers of the same calibre. Plus you would have to invest more time to make proposals and money for the subscription fee.
So make sure that you’re ready for this level of competition and commitment before deciding to use these websites.
Where the Experts are: ProBlogger and Constant Content
Even the most seasoned writers are choosing to go freelance and make their money online because the topnotch quality of their work demand equally hefty paychecks.
If you’re one of the experts, ProBlogger and Constant Content have features tailored to your needs. Both websites are incredibly efficient at posting jobs with high-calibre potential clients representing top brands and companies.
It’s the ideal venue to form connections and build, as well as nurture long-term relationships for regular projects.
Here’s the lowdown on ProBlogger and Constant Content:
Problogger charges $70 from a client to post a job on their board, so just like FlexJobs, you can be sure that the clients who post here will definitely hire someone.
You’ll find that in beginner-friendly websites such as Fiverr and People Per Hour, clients have the tendency to post jobs and never look back. With Problogger, you can rest assured that clients need high-quality writing and are looking for serious writers.
It’s professional all round and the opportunities available are unprecedented, especially if you’re qualified for the job.
As its name suggests, this website is a niche for expert bloggers. So you can use the ProBlogger to create and grow your blog and make money blogging.
As a plus, they’ve got over 8,000 posts with blogging advice, tips and in-depth tutorials alongside the latest blogging trends, which can help you be on top things even if you’re already an expert.
I actually have a mate who once landed a job on ProBlogger, and she was able to take home about £3k per month during her half a year stint. Not too shabby, right?
For more info about blogging, check this post out.
Constant Content is one of the premiere article marketplaces for serious freelance writers to make money online.
Like FlexJobs, it has a rigorous screening process but the large marketplace and demand for writing make this marketplace one of the best.
And because Constant Content caters to highly experienced writers, freelancers can demand top dollar for their articles (charging upward of $100 and more for each article). And top writers earn up to $90,000 per year.
It’s super versatile too. You can establish a steady workload that fits your schedule and availability, find projects that match your expertise and interests and choose your working set-up, whether you want to do it alone, on a team or in an expert group.
You know what they say: if you’ve got it, flaunt it. ProBlogger and Constant Content are the perfect venues for showcasing your hard-earned skills and experience. The payoff will be completely rewarding.
All Round Flexibility and Tight-Knit Community: TCC Academy
The TCC Academy is a common space for everyone. Whether you’re a budding copywriter, a more experienced one or an expert looking to enhance existing skills while mentoring newbies, then this is the sweet spot.
Besides having a comprehensive 8-course curriculum and tons of practice activities, TCC Academy also has its own community where fellow course students can post their works, comment and give feedback to each other.
And soon, there will be a sub-portal where freelance writers within the community can access projects from different brands. You’ll also have the opportunity to be connected to brands whom TCC have worked with, such as Adidas, TikTok, Hyundai and Thomson Reuters, to name a few.
Besides getting access to freelance jobs and forging connections with top brands, being part of the community and taking the course will help you master the ins and outs of freelance writing.
Even the nitty-gritty stuff like best practices in creating a website, writing a proposal, building a portfolio, putting together an effective invoice system and setting yourself up as a freelancer are all covered.
In other words, it’s the kickstarter pack for any writer who wants to go freelance.
At $290 (reduced from $1197 for a limited time), it’s a good investment for the value-rich knowledge, experience and opportunities you’ll get.
And once you get cracking with projects from the community, you’re most likely to get your money back within 2 working days, as freelance writers can get paid from $200 to $2000 per day, depending on the size of the project and their level of expertise.
So why not give it a go?
Writers can count themselves lucky, especially during these times, because there are so many remote working writing opportunities online for freelancers.
And even before COVID-19 times, freelance writing was already a thriving industry, so it looks like it’s going to become even more lucrative as we usher in the new normal.
As you begin your journey towards carving a freelance writing career, remember that you can make the most out of online opportunities by knowing where to look.
It’s all about being strategic. You have to determine your level of expertise, the kinds of projects you’re willing to work on and the amount of time, energy and money you’re willing to spend. There are corresponding freelance writing websites that would cater to all of these needs.
So now that you’re all set, you can start going places in the freelance writing world. Fire up your engine because it’s gonna be one hell of a ride.