Online writing jobs are usually contract jobs. You are hired for a particular job, at least at first. Every online writer is a freelancer, competing on price and quality with every other writer for jobs.
Online Writing Jobs-101
What Kind of Online Writing Jobs Are There?
There are many different types of online writing jobs where you are paid directly for the writing you produce.
There are people who will pay you to make forum posts, either in a new forum, or in one that you already frequent.
Forum users are totally intolerant of spam. Any post from a new user with a link in equates to spam, whereas if you are an established contributor to a forum the occasional link will be tolerated.
Most forums allow you to have a link in your profile, some allow signature links, but these have been abused to such a degree that most signature links have been removed.
If you post something that is genuinely useful other users will check out your profile and some of those will follow your profile link. It is this link that people are renting from you; you need to link to a site chosen by the person paying you.
Most bloggers write their own blog posts, but there are some who will pay you to make new posts on a regular basis and to maintain their blog, deleting spam, even replying to comments.
These people advertise their blog writing jobs anonymously on sites aimed at bloggers. Some will be celebrities, others are company blogs, whichever is the case you can expect frequent emails with news to include in your blog posts.
Other blogs pay many different writers to make posts on a pay per post basis. Usually you put a post on your own blog about a particular product and are paid for doing so. This works if your blog is on that topic and you have a genuine first-hand knowledge of the product or service you are being paid to review; otherwise you will lose blog subscribers very quickly.
There are sites that commission articles, acting as middlemen between writers and website owners. These will pay you up to $40 for a 1,000 word article. This is the highest paying type of online writing job.
In between commissioned jobs you can write for your own account. Either write articles for a site that shares the advertising income with writers, or submit articles to a middleman site and set your own price, speculative article writing.
Why Should You Look For Online Writing Jobs?
Everyone has unique knowledge and some spare time. The world economic situation is going to stay bad for a long time, so you are going to need an alternative source of income for many years to come.
Building a library of articles at advertising share sites makes a lot of sense. These will earn you money for a long time.
Who Are You Competing With For Online Writing Jobs?
There are two groups of writers looking for online jobs, those in the developed economies and those in developing countries.
Writers from countries like America, UK, Ireland, Canada and Australia usually write in excellent English, using modern idiom and grammar. These writers have a higher cost of living so need to charge more for their online writing.
Writers from countries like India, Thailand, China and the Phillipines have a varying standard of English, some write very poorly and use peculiar sentence structures. These writers do have very low pay expectations because wages and the cost of living in their countries are so low.
How Do You Compete for Online Writing Jobs?
You cannot compete with both high quality writers in US and with low quality Indian writers.
Decide how much you need to earn per hour. Writers in low-cost economies such as China, typically write articles for less than $0.01 per word. Some will bid $2 for a thousand word article. If you live in UK or USA you cannot compete on price with these writers.
As an American or British writer, your strong point when you are competing for online writing jobs is your education and the standard of your written English. Website owners will pay more for articles that are well written. If you live in Great Britain, Ireland, Australia or US you can only compete on quality and service.
Where Do You Find an Online Writing Job?
Paid blog posts are available at payperpost.com (link opens in new window)
ODesk has all kinds of jobs, including forum posts, data entry and article writing
Constant Content (Link opens in new window) is the best of the article middlemen sites. If you live in USA, check out textbroker.com
For the in-between times, when commissioned jobs are thin on the ground, think about writing articles for a site that gives you a share of advertising. Info Barrel is the best (Link opens in new window), giving you 75% – 90% of the ads around your articles.