Let’s face it. Freelance writing is one of the most popular careers for stay at home moms and dads. Thanks to its popularity, students in colleges and young adults back packing through Europe or North America have used freelance writing opportunities to earn a quick buck and fund their different ventures.
As a career that helps to catapult one from the 9 to 5-day job, one can become a full-time freelance writer and be able to take home more pay compared with one’s day job. Furthermore, you will get to learn new things as well as build up a great portfolio of skills. Do you want to get started and learn how to become a freelance writer? Well, read on!
Getting Started – Requirements
As a freelance writer, you must equip yourself with a few tools. These will help you to work efficiently and provide your clients with superb content that is relevant, entertaining and informative. Here is what you need:
- A laptop installed with the latest operating system and antivirus
- Reliable internet connection
- Approved payment system, for example, PayPal, MasterCard or Visa
- A better understanding of English grammar is a must. Knowledge of other foreign languages is a plus
- Research skills
- An attitude to succeed
How to Become a Freelance Writer Online – Step by step guide
Step One – Prepare yourself: mentally, financially and physically
I know freelance writing may sound like an exciting and adventurous career – which it is – but preparing yourself mentally, financially and physically will help to ensure your success. As a freelance writer, you will probably be spending several hours completing assignments. Also, you will have to spend more time not only communicating with clients and making changes to projects but also applying for new projects. This will definitely take a toll on your mind and you need to be prepared.
When it comes to finances, set aside extra cash that will help to supplement your income for a minimum of 6 months as you embark on your new career as a freelance writer. During this time, there are several problems that may arise. They include:
- Clients may not pay your invoices on time
- You may have difficulties finding projects. This may be attributed to your entry level rating
iii. Your selected payment system may receive charge backs or experience fraud
- Clients may dispute projects you have submitted delaying your payment
- Your writer’s account may be closed due to a particular reason
Physically, you may have to spend several hours sitting at your computer desk completing applications for different writing projects. This will result in fatigue. To address the problem, take breaks after an hour or two. How? By walking and stretching your limbs for 5 to 10 minutes.
Step Two – Understand content creation
Many people assume that creating content is simple as writing an SMS or a message to a friend via a mobile app or social media messaging app. What you ought to know is that it’s quite difficult. There are several things one has to learn before they start writing content. For starters, you have to know what a keyword is and how to use it in your content. Secondly, you have to learn how to format the content with the reader and search engine bots in mind. Lastly, you have to learn about the different niches.
When it comes to keywords, familiarize yourself with SEO and its rules. It is common to find clients requesting you to utilize a particular set of keywords a number of times in the entire article. Furthermore, instructions may require you to incorporate the keywords in specific locations too.
When it comes to niches, learn more about them. Take a notebook, a pen and begin researching. Here is a resource to get you started. Once you have learned about the available niches, it is important to select those that you are well versed in. For example, you can select business and finance. This will allow you to create content centered around businesses and finance. A good title to write about for this niche is “How to improve your credit score.”
Step Three – Apply to be a freelance writer
If you take your time and search the internet using the following keyword “freelance writing,” the search engine will reveal to you platforms that offer freelance writers an opportunity to connect with clients. You can also use “how to become a freelance writer online” to research on personal blogs. Notable freelancing website you will find online include:
These platforms will require you to open an account, create your profile and begin applying for assignments. The best freelance platform for beginners is UpWork.
On the other hand, you may opt to find clients on your own. This technique is suitable for advanced freelancers. To get clients of your own, you have to join forums. A great place to start is the Warrior Forum. Remember, this method is dangerous. You may end up being conned.
Step Four – Start small
I know you are anxious to start making some cash so the piece of advice you need to keep in mind is – start small. What do I mean? Instead of selecting or undertaking large projects as a beginner, start with small projects. For example instead of undertaking a project that requires you to complete more than 1,000 words, start with less than 500 words. Starting small allows you to learn the ropes. Furthermore, it allows clients to learn more about your work. It is common for clients to rate your work. By starting small, you will receive more ratings thus boosting your profile. This will increase the chances for you to get more projects and higher earnings.
Step Five – Refine your writing skills
Now that you have learned how to become a freelance writer online, you can proceed by refining your skills. What do I mean? Learning new techniques to improve your writing and studying the industry. It is important to understand that the freelance writing market does change rapidly. Keeping up with changes helps to improve your ROI. This will set you on the path to commanding higher pay for your projects.
I wish you good luck in your new career!