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Content Writing Services: Often Maligned, These Freelance Writing Jobs Have a Lot of Value

Updated on April 12, 2016

All work is good work when it comes to the freelance writing job market.

Content writing is sometimes brutally sneered at by those writers that consider themselves serious artists. This is why you might find so many discussions online about freelance writing jobs putting down services offering consistent streams of revenue for those freelancers willing to put the effort into writing for them. Commonly dubbed content farms, freelance writers looking for high paying assignments will condemn the very existence of these services.

Such an attitude is really not the best way to take for anyone serious about becoming a professional writer or earning a living. The truth is these freelance writing venues do create opportunities for freelancers and any chance to earn money at writing should never be dismissed.

And a little bit of extra money is better than no extra money.

Common Complaint: The Pay is Low

Probably the main complaint writers have about the pay on many freelance writing jobs would be the seemingly low pay. $3.50 to $5.00 per 500 words might not exactly be the type of fee that will help you retire to a tropical island. However, you also have to look at the pay realistically and from a proper fiscal perspective. 500 words is just one page and writing one page on simple topics such as home improvement or basic personal finance is going to be too taxing.

The simple math is this: if you write three of these simple articles a day, seven days a week for $4, you will make $12 a day. That comes out to $84 a week, week in and week out. Again, do the math. That is a nice supplemental income to earn over the course of a year. Why turn down such money? Reputable services often pay on time and without delays. Getting a weekly reliable payment for simple freelance writing job tasks is not exactly something to put down.

At the end of the week, getting a $50 payoff for very simple writing work is not all that bad.

Low Paying Work is Common to All Business Endeavors

No matter what type of work you do or what type of business you are involved with, low paying work is commonplace. Think about those folks that walk into a convenience store and buy a .99 cent item and leave. The store takes the money because, well, it needs all those little purchases to stay in business. Small purchases add up and help cover those days when large purchases are not being made. Such a truism will extend to anyone interested in accepting a less than stellar paying freelance writing job.

No one is saying a writer should only work for pennies on a freelance writing job. No one would suggest anyone should exclusively take low pay on freelance writing jobs. You can always set your own fee on classified advertisements or on freelance bidding sites. While you are doing this, you still can make extra money (or even a lot of money) from content writing services.

Here is some news: a lot of well paid and even famous writers have worked for low pay at some point in their career. You do not have to take any work you think is below what you are worth, but do not lose site of the fact if you always turn down work, you will not be working.

The Silver Lining in the New Search Engine World

Chances to earn higher pay are emerging thanks to the new, stricter requirements the search engines place on content. The days of low quality, duplicate, boring content driving a website or blog to the top of the search engine ranking are over. At one time, purchasing 10 articles for $5 to fill up entries on a promotional blog was good enough. This is not the case anymore.

The written word has to be engaging in order for the search engines to smile upon it. The benefit for writers is higher end work comes with higher fees. Those capable of delivering high quality writing may find themselves in demand at content services that far double or triple the going rate for work.

All Work Experience is Good for Resume Boosting

Any and all type of writing you do ends up going on your resume. Trust me. This will definitely help you down the road when you are trying to find a job in a communications or media related field. Those in a position to hire want to see whether or not you have accomplished anything.

A resume that proudly notes you have completed 500 freelance writing jobs while working for a content service over the course of 3 years says a lot of good things about you. After all, what service would want to hire you and keep you for three years if you were not a decent writer?

While we would all those to take those freelance writing jobs with high pay and uniquely creative topics, they are not always available. In the interim, accepting work from a content writing service does give you steady employment, regular pay and work experience. Those are three things any freelance writer should at least seriously take into consideration.

Concerns do exist today about the slowdown of the amount of work available through these services. In reality, there is next to nothing anyone can do about this issue. Skilled writers can take solace in the fact that any work they does count for experience. Quality generally will trump quantity when trying to establish your professional skills.

And do not fall for the hype about changes in the search engines have killed the content marketing business. While the amount of work is not at the glory day levels of 2006 - 2009, assignments are still available in sizeable amounts.


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    • profile image

      John Kohli 4 years ago

      Thank you so much for writing this blog. I was confused between choosing a career as a website content writer for a company and a freelance writer. You have solved my confusion.

    • theluckywriter profile image

      Stephanie 5 years ago from Canada

      I guess it really depends on how quickly you write, and on the expectations that you place on yourself. I'd have a hard time justifying spending up to an hour on an article that will only pay me $4 - and an hour is about how long it takes me to write a good, error-free, well-organized 500-word article.

      The only content site that I work with is Constant Content. The pay-per-article there is MUCH higher than $4/500 words - although you do often have to wait a while before an article sells.

    • profile image

      Ellen 5 years ago

      That's a good, practical perspective. :)

    • TCaro profile image

      Tony Caro 5 years ago

      Yes, that is my point. Even low paying content work has some value. Even a small amount of low paying work help with the bills while also boosts your writing experience and credentials.

    • profile image

      Josie 5 years ago

      This post caught my eye because I recently took a content writing job on Elance. The pay is a bit higher than you mention but still on the low side. I agree with your basic premise, though, and look at this job as my baseline. It's a year-long project and my time spent is two days per week on it. Knowing I have that minimum each week for a year is a good thing as far as I'm concerned!