Would you like to be a freelance blogger and get paid to blog?
Blogging is a great way to make money as a freelance writer and establish yourself as an expert. And nearly 70% of SEO experts agree that blogging is a valuable way for businesses to grow their audience and increase sales.
The demand for freelance bloggers is real. Businesses and brands need freelance writers who know how to craft a killer blog post that draws readers in and converts them to customers.
If blogging is a skill you can master as a freelance writer, you could easily make some serious money. I routinely make $300-$500 and sometimes more for 500 to 700-word blog posts.
Blog writing is a great freelance writing niche for so many reasons:
- Blogging is more conversational, which is great if you have a casual writing style.
- While video traffic is growing online, businesses and brands still rely on blogs to sell their products and services.
- There are freelance writing clients who are willing to pay hundreds (or sometimes thousands) of dollars for blog content.
- Blog posts can take less time to write if you’re an expert and know your topic inside and out.
- You could parlay your blogging skills into a profitable blog of your own.
Does any of that sound good to you? If you said yes, then here are my best tips for becoming a highly-paid freelance blogger.
How to Get Paid to Blog (Even If You’re New to Blogging)
I became a freelance writer and blogger more or less by accident. It didn’t keep me from being successful but it did mean that it took a while before I started making serious money from writing.
So these tips are designed to help you lay a strong foundation for succeeding with your blogging efforts.
1. Start a blog of your own
Everybody and their cat has a blog these days, or at least it seems that way. If you don’t have a blog yet, then there are some good reasons to start one as a freelance writer:
- Blogging can be a great way to build your freelance writing portfolio.
- You can use your blog to establish your freelance writing brand.
- Networking with other freelance bloggers and writers could lead to better-paying gigs.
- You can become an expert in whatever you blog about.
- Most importantly, starting a blog of your own teaches you how to blog.
That last one is important if you want to eventually get paid to blog for clients.
Businesses that hire freelance bloggers don’t have time to teach you the difference between an H2 and H3 header or how to use SEO keywords. They expect you to come to the table knowing that kind of stuff already. And cutting your teeth on a blog of your own is a great way to get the knowledge you need.
If you don’t have a blog yet, then here’s exactly what you need to do to start one.
Choose a domain name
Picking a blog name is one of those things you could easily spend months agonizing over. But that’s just wasting time.
You want to get your blog up and running and for that, you need a domain name. So pick something short but sweet that spells out what your blog is about.
For example, this blog is called “Write to Six Figures” because my goal is teaching other freelancers how to make $100,000+ each year from their writing.
If you can’t think up a catchy name then you can always use your first and last name or a variation of it. Whatever you do, keep it simple so you can move on to the next step as quickly as possible.
Choose a blog host
If you’re going to start a blog so you can get paid to blog, you don’t want to waste time with a free site. That makes you look like a rookie and it’s tough to get clients to take you seriously as a freelance blogger.
What you want instead is a self-hosted WordPress blog. Self-hosted means you pay a blog host to keep your site up and running and your domain name ends in .com (or a similar extension) instead of wordpress.com, which is a free domain.
My blog host of choice is Siteground; they are hands-down the best company to work with for blog hosting in my opinion.
I am not techie at all and I’ve had to call on Siteground’s support team more than once to fix mistakes I’ve made on the backend of my blog. They are always extremely responsive and understanding, and they never make me feel like a blogging moron.
If that sounds good to you, then head over to Siteground now to purchase blog hosting. You can also get your domain name through Siteground as well, which makes starting a blog oh-so-simple.
Once you have your blog domain name and hosting, the next things you’ll need to do are install WordPress and choose a theme. From there, you can start posting blog content and customizing your site.
For more on the nuts and bolts of getting your blog up and running, read this post on how to start blogging as a freelance writer.
Pro tip: Monetize your blog
You might be focused on how to get paid to blog for clients but you could also make money with your own blog. Some of the best ways to make money blogging include:
- Offering a service through your blog (like freelance writing!)
- Place ads on your blog
- Write sponsored posts
- Sell digital products through your blog
- Promote affiliate products
You can use one of these methods or a combination of all of them to make money blogging.
If you’re looking for more help on how to make money with a blog, check out Simply Blogging from Sasha at Everyday She’s Sparkling. She knows everything there is to know about launching a profitable blog!
2. Learn the basics of blogging
I already mentioned this but it’s worth repeating: if you want to get paid to blog, then you need to know something about blogging first.
Writing a blog post is totally different from writing a reported article with interviewed sources or a white paper or copy for a sales brochure. There are certain elements that make a blog post a blog post and not something else.
If you’ve never blogged before, the best way to learn how to do it is by studying other blogs. This is exactly the approach I took. The second best way to learn how to blog is by practicing on your own blog.
As you learn how to craft the perfect blog post, here are a few pointers to keep in mind:
- Strike the right tone. Blogging is more conversational than other types of content writing. You might even have a client ask you to write something in a “bloggy” style. If you don’t know what that means, here’s a simple rule for writing great blog posts: write them like you’re talking to your best friend.
- Use your keywords strategically. Ideally, you should have your keyword in the first 100 words of the post, in at least one subheading and used throughout the body every 200 words or so.
- Know your headers. The H1 or Heading 1 is for your blog post title. H2, H3 and so on are your subheads and you need to use them in order. So if you have a subhead H2, then you could break each point of your content down into H3 subheads, but not the other way around.
- Keep sentences short. Don’t let your blog post sentences run on and on. Try to aim for 20 words or less per sentence and 3 sentences or less per paragraph.
- Break up your text. No one wants to read a solid wall of text. Numbered and bulleted lists are your friends so use them to create some variety in your posts.
- Back up what you’re saying. As a freelance blogger, your content has to be readable and credible. So make sure you’re including links to relevant statistics, studies, surveys and other data from legitimate sources.
- End with a clear call to action. Your call to action or CTA is where you tell the reader what to do next. If you’re writing for a clients’ blog, they may tell you what the CTA should say. But if you’re writing on your own blog, then tell your readers exactly what you need them to do, whether that’s comment on the post, share it or sign up for your opt-in.
3. Craft some killer blog writing samples
Here’s the thing about being a freelance writer. If you want to get paid to blog, you need to have some writing samples.
It’s a chicken-or-the-egg kind of situation since you need to be able to show blogging clients you can write to get a blog writing gig.
Again, this is exactly why it pays to have your own blog. You can use the posts you write for your blog as samples for prospective clients.
Now, that doesn’t necessarily mean you can post anything on your blog and use that as a freelance writing sample. When creating samples, you want to make sure they’re:
- Relevant to whatever niche you want to write in (i.e. finance, parenting, digital marketing, business, etc.)
- Long enough to cover the topic in detail (Think 1,000 to 1,500 words)
- Perfectly proofread and spellchecked (I love Grammarly for this!)
- Visually appealing (Use bulleted lists to break up the text, keep sentences short and add images!)
Remember to think about who your ideal client is when writing posts.
If you want to get paid to blog for a finance website, for example, then you should be able to show a prospective client samples that are finance-related. Studying potential clients’ blogs to see what kind of content they’re already publishing is a great way to get inspiration for what to write.
4. Set your freelance blogging rates
You might be ready to go out and start looking for freelance blogging gigs but hold on a sec. First, decide what you want to charge as a freelance blogger.
There’s no standard rate that you can get paid to blog; every client is different. But you can influence what you earn from freelance blogging by setting your minimum and maximum rate.
When setting rates for blog writing, consider:
- How many words you’ll be writing.
- The amount of research you’ll need to do to write the post.
- Whether there’s any extra legwork required, like sourcing images or interviewing experts for quotes.
- How many rounds of edits the client expects you to make, if any.
All of that can help you come up with a guideline for what to charge. For example, if you know that you’re going to have to spend an hour on the phone interviewing sources for a post, factor that into your rate. The same goes for sourcing images or making edits later.
All your time spent on writing a post adds up so you want to get paid fairly for it. If you’re a new freelance writer, at the very least you should ask for $0.25 per word. So a 500-word post would be $125.
If you’re more experienced, then your rate should be $0.50 per word or more. And the more involved a post is (i.e. if you need pictures or expert quotes, etc.) then the more you should charge to make your time invested worth it.
5. Get some freelance blogging clients
So by now, you should have everything you need to get paid to blog. Now it’s time to find those paid blogging gigs!
There are three main ways you can do this as a new or established freelance writer:
- Leverage your network and social media to find paid blogging gigs
- Cold pitch business or brands you want to work with
- Apply for freelance blogging gigs through job boards
Use your network and social media profiles to get paid to blog
Building your freelance writing network and social media presence are two things you should be doing from day one.
Having a solid network can open the door to better-paying gigs, including paid blogging jobs. The people in your network can make introductions or refer you to prospective clients, which means more money for you if you pick up a gig.
Your social media profiles can also help you lock down blogging gigs. Twitter, for example, can be a gold mine for finding blogging and freelance writing jobs.
If you aren’t leveraging your network or social media profiles yet to find paid blogging gigs, here a few tips that can help:
- Fine-tune your LinkedIn profile. Use keywords in your profile that are relevant to your niche, add links to your writing clips and ask for past clients to give you a testimonial.
- Make use of hashtags on Twitter. Using the right hashtags on Twitter can be a fast and easy way to find blogging gigs. Try hashtags like #writerneeded #bloggerneeded or #writingjobs to get leads on paid blogging jobs.
- Don’t forget Pinterest. Pinterest isn’t a social media platform, it’s a search engine. But you could use it to attract clients to use if you’re using your Pinterest profile as a way to share your best blog posts.
- Ask your network for referrals. You don’t need a huge network to find paid blogging jobs but you do need to use the network you have. If you know a writer or editor who has a connection to a blog you’d like to write for, drop them a friendly note mentioning that you’re looking for writing opportunities and ask if they know anyone who needs a writer. The very worst they can do is turn you down.
Start cold pitching
Cold pitching can be your bread and butter as a freelance writer.
When you pitch, you’re basically reaching out to a prospective client and putting yourself on their radar. You could write a simple introductory pitch or a more in-depth pitch that includes a few blog post topics you’d like to write about.
Here are a few rules to remember when writing pitches:
- Address your pitch to the right person. If you’re pitching a blog or business, make sure you’re sending your pitch to the editor, marketing manager or whoever is in charge of blog content. And of course, address them by name instead of using a generic greeting.
- Keep it short and sweet. Your cold pitch isn’t the time to write a book. Keep your message tight and focused: introduce yourself, mention what you do as a blogger and focus on how you can help the client.
- Make your pitch tempting. If you’re including some post ideas in your pitch, that’s your chance to wow a prospective client. Read their blog and look for angles they haven’t covered yet. Then pitch them a few unique ideas, complete with catchy headlines.
- Close with a clear CTA. Wrap up your pitch email with CTA — tell the client to email you or call you to schedule a chat about how you can help them with their blogging content needs.
For more on pitching, read this guide on how to write a pitch that gets clients.
Use job boards to find paid blogging gigs
Job boards were how I found most of my gigs early on as a new freelance writer. When you’re using the right ones, you can find plenty of quality paid blogging jobs.
If you’re looking for some good places to start, check out these job boards:
I used all of these job boards to find paid blogging gigs when I was brand-new to freelancing.
As you’re applying to jobs from job boards, remember to read over the ad carefully and follow the directions to apply. If a job poster asks for samples, send them. If they as for a specific keyword or phrase to be used in the email subject line, use it. Those kinds of things can help you stand out from the crowd.
You might be wondering whether a site like Upwork is worth your time if you want to get paid to blog. If you asked me a few years ago, I would have said maybe. But now the answer is a firm no.
Upwork is a bidding site that in my opinion, is essentially a race to the bottom. Many clients that use the platform pay literally pennies for bloggers and freelancers.
If you want to make a six-figure income as a blogger, then that’s not the kind of work you want to be doing. So unless you’re truly desperate to make money blogging, give Upwork and similar bidding sites a hard pass.
For more ideas on places to find freelance writing jobs, check out these posts:
- 55 Places to Find Paid Freelance Writing Jobs Online
- 3 Ways to Get Freelance Writing Jobs With Zero Experience
- 10 Ways to Land Your First Freelance Writing Job (and What to Do Next)
Are You Ready to Get Paid to Blog?
Being a paid freelance blogger is an awesome way to make money online. As a busy mom, I definitely appreciate being able to make $1,000+ from home every day from my couch.
If you’re ready to start making money as a freelance writer, check out my free 6-day email course! It covers everything you need to know to get paid for your writing skills!
And of course, please pin and share this post if it helped you!