While it may seem like these sites are your best best when you’re a newcomer, they’re largely a crapshoot when it comes to winning a project. These sites are a rush for the lowest bid, and you’re competing against hundreds if not thousands of other desperate freelancers prepared to sell their firstborn for the chance to write someone’s 250-page ebook. (Some writers have been able to make a decent buck on sites like Upwork, but they are often the exception rather than the rule and have usually invested huge amounts of time to make it happen.)
This is a job with much potential, in part because the title description covers many things. “You can fit your offerings to what you know how to do,” says Stephanie Foster, a former medical transcriptionist who runs the website HomeWithTheKids.com. One can own a virtual assistant business or work from home for a company that makes you available to other employers or clients. HomeWithTheKids.com, for example, currently features several such companies.
I don’t know what I’m doing wrong. Although it’s more of a marketing position, I write content two days a week for a financial advisor, but it isn’t enough to pay the bills. Maybe it’s just the area I live in but I can’t land a writing gig to save my life. And writing is a real passion of mine so it’s very frustrating. I’ll try and apply some of your tips and advice. And I feel like no matter how many emails and resumes I send out, I rarely get a reply.
What It Is: Do people ask you your secret to perfect pie crust or how you made that wreath? "Everyone knows how to do something, or has a hobby they enjoy," says Kimberly Lawson, owner of OohLaLuxe.net, who has created fashion and beauty tutorial videos. "These can easily be turned into profits." Simply sign up for a free YouTube account. Then use a smartphone or digital camera to record yourself explaining and demonstrating how you work your magic. (If you're more tech-savvy or have a burgeoning teenage filmmaker in your house, you can use desktop software, such as Windows Movie Maker, to create a slicker video.) "Once you upload the video to YouTube, enroll in its partner program," Lawson says. YouTube will then place ads inside or near your video, and you will earn money from the ads themselves, video views and click-throughs. "The key is to put a unique spin on your video," says Lawson, especially if there are lots of others on the same subject.
Sound up your aisle? Fill out an application through the site, which pairs brides and bridesmaids based on personality and location. You could make between $200 and  $2,000 per month, says Glantz, working anywhere from a few hours a month to a couple of hours a week, and you'll generally handle everything on nights and weekends. Most projects—er, weddings—require between 3 to 11 months of your time.
To avoid any confusion, I want to make it clear first that virtual assistant work is not always non-phone, but it can be. Virtual assistants tend to do a little bit of everything, just depending on their skills/expertise. So if you are good at various non-phone tasks (social media marketing/moderation, writing, graphic design, research etc.), then you may be able to do work for some of the companies below putting those non-phone skills to work.
From my own experience, I’ve used Textbroker to make quick cash for bills. They pay every week on Fridays and if you work a lot every day, you can usually have a substantial amount accumulated by the end of the week — definitely more than the $10 cash out threshold. The only bad thing there is you never know how much work they’ll have up to grab from the order board. But I would say that for me Textbroker has been an excellent source for getting bill money together when I need it quick. Amazon Mturk is another idea. You can cash out there at just $1 and it transfers to your bank account. There is an entire sub-forum about Mturk over at the Work Place Like Home forum where people discuss the best tasks to accept to make the most money. Mturk has a reputation for being just an extra money option, but I know for a fact there are some people making more than just extra money over there.
As more companies shift from traditional sales models, the number of online sales jobs will rise. The same thing applies for online content writers, especially as newspapers and magazines shut down their offline publications and rely on online content. At the same time that there is an increase in Part-Time Online Jobs, the number of offline jobs will decrease. From 2012 to 2022, traditional advertising sales jobs will decrease by 1 percent, which means that the field will lose approximately 1,000 jobs.
Thanks so much for this amazing list. I am new to the “leap off the bridge” mindset that is doing freelance writing for a living. I have made my living in the past in management and small business ownership (aftermarket automotive parts store, a NAPA to be precise). I have a BA in Sociology and I have also worked in non-profit management and social work but my dream has always been to write. So after selling the business I decided to follow my dream of being a writer. I have done some blogging and have a novel I’m working on along with a few academic papers that were published while in college. I also have written curriculum for young adults that was published by a Christian publisher some years ago. However, even with some marginal knowledge about writing for a living, I found the amount of information out there to be overwhelming and much of it is people simply promoting scams or trying to sell you on their program. Your post is a breath of fresh air compared to much of the other “content” out there about freelancing. Thank you for taking the time to share
Hey, kelly. This article was an actual eye opener.I’m from India and being a novice writer, I didn’t have any expectations which made me vulnerable to such clients. I’ve worked for clients who have been paying rather poorly but require an ‘outstanding’ quality of work from us. I’m amused and at the same time rather disappointed when I realize that I had been working for 0.16 cents per word !! Once again a big thank you for now I know what to expect and whom to deny. Take Care.

Thank you for the encouragement…It’s that first step that is the scariest! I have written and designed all too many things in my lifetime and going/doing this new phase of my ‘connecting the dots’ and reaching out to find my nitch and have fun again with words and thoughts….My oh my!!!! Infinite possibilities open-up!!! Onwards and upwards! Take care 😊
Hey Elna! I am currently working towards breaking into the field of freelance editing and your advice has helped me immensely. I’ll be finishing my degree this year and I’ve been feeling anxious about future job opportunities (and lack thereof). After reading this, I feel so much more at ease. Do you have any tips for students who still need to gain experience?
FlexJobs, the Boulder-based remote-friendly career postings site, is cutting through the complexity of this question. Each year, they compile a list of the top 100 companies hiring remote workers. This year, though, they’ve created a special list of all the companies who have made their top 100 lists for each of the past five years. While many companies require you to clock in and out each day, the employers on this list don’t care whether you do your work from Santorini or Shanghai.
More than ever, writers are needed to formulate news articles, create content, and come up with the creative ideas that fill the pages of nearly every site on the Internet. And although many bigger sites have in-house writers, a growing number of sites outsource their content and hire freelance writers and content creators. Writing experience is very helpful, but what you really need to get started are drive, ambition, and the ability to find a unique angle on events that happen every day.
7. SigTrack – SigTrack works with independent contractors to record whether petition signers are voters or to process voter registration and other forms. Since this work revolves around the petition season, they only hire at certain times. Pay is per work unit based on accuracy, and they require that you maintain at least 98% accuracy to satisfy your contract and also peer review others’ work. They pay via PayPal. This position is only available to U.S. citizens and you’ll be required to do a short Skype call during the interview process to establish identity. Equipment requirements are pretty standard, but note that they require dual monitors.
Holly fell into freelance writing on a whim. She submitted several pitches for guest posts and ended up landing a few clients. After roughly 6 months of freelancing on the side, she was making enough money to replace her income and work at home full-time. Now, she makes over $200,000 a year from writing alone. Not bad for a home-based business, eh?
Thanks for taking the time to stop by the site. I’m sorry about the difficulties you’ve faced with the Nigerian laws. Unfortunately there isn’t much that can be done if laws like that are in place. Why those laws are there, I don’t know. Many Nigerians seem to have the same problems. Instead of looking at general ways to start businesses or make money, you might use the internet to find strategies that are specific to Nigeria. Hopefully, in the future we can find a way to help more people start businesses in that country.
Many online job platforms such as Upwork.com also have their own system for recognizing and removing job scams. According to the site, many of them involve “employers” who try to pay workers outside the site’s payment system, and engage in some sort of check or money order fraud. For more tips on avoiding job scams on freelancing sites, read about it here.
Hi, not trying to being rude or anything, but if you’re planning a career in writing, you might want to check your spelling and/or grammar before putting it out there. Just saying…again, it trying to be rude or mean. I wish the best of luck to you! I too, am trying to get some writing gigs, and just starting out. I have no idea where to even begin. With that said, I think constructive criticism is a good thing, that if we take need to, can help us out in the long run. If anyone has any constructive criticism or constructive advice for me, please comment. Thank you!
Hi! I'm looking for a reliable math tutor for my 7th grader. I need someone with experience teaching 7-8 grade math who can come twice a week (Monday, Tuesday, or Wednesday) for 1 1/2-2 hours each time. Please contact me if you are interested. P. S: I'm looking for a Spanish language tutor as well, if you can do both that would be great. If not that's OK. Thank you!
Are you a great listener? Good! That and solid typing skills are the basic requirements to becoming a transcriptionist online. Generally, you should type at least 60 WPM, and you should be able to type efficiently and accurately. While listening and typing is pretty easy work out of the gate, you will likely have a set of guidelines you need to follow to the letter. But once you get those guidelines down, you can settle in and let your fingers do the talking.
I thoroughly enjoyed the article and am waiting for my husband to get off work to discuss taking your course. I have been struggling to find the next step in my career and I keep leaving my job searches to research free lance writing instead. I have always loved writing creatively and journaling, and I think I’m ready to really jump into this for a career.
But once you’re in your home office—alone, every day—you might start to miss that collegial camaraderie. Since the UPS incident, I’ve reached out more to colleagues via IM and will post cute pics of my new puppy for my colleagues to see on Yammer. And when we’re on deadline, we even (gasp!) talk on the phone. It’s helped tremendously to make the disconnect not feel so severe. It’s a good balance between having peace and quiet when you need it and much-needed interaction with others, too.
I actually want to reply to David Russell but can’t seem to. David, you should write to the editor of MedicalExpo e-Magazine and propose your journalism services. Take a look at the magazine first (emag.medicalexpo.com) to see what they’ve recently published, get an idea for the kind of info, and pitch a potential story. I know the editor and they pay well.
If there’s one course I’d recommend to anyone starting out as a freelance writer, it’d be yours. It was exactly what I needed when I started out and it’s helped me immensely over the past few months to put things into perspective. This post is just a teaser of what to expect from Writeto1K, but then again, all your blog posts are packed with the most useful tips you can find online. I can only say thank you for sharing them with us!
As a novice freelance writer, you’ll need to get some experience under your belt before you can start grabbing for lucrative writing gigs. Although many people slag off content mills such as TextBroker (which turn out bulk content and don’t pay very much), students shouldn’t ignore them as they are a place to earn guaranteed money (even if it’s rather low money).
I just love this list, my husband was none too happy when he found out that I had paid 100 dollars to an online scam…. So getting frustrated and just about giving up hope on getting a job for home I ran across this…. I was just wondering if there happened to be anymore job opportunities now since it has been a couple of years…. I have three children and I want to afford their extracurricular activities such as baseball and gymnastics… I don’t want to get a job that would keep me from taking them to practice and or games so I have been trying the online job search and as I have mentioned its basically one scam after the next…. I just really want to make it a little more easier on my husband since he is working so hard and going to school so our children and I can have a good life. So to make it easier I want to work from home and help some with bills without the cost of childcare and just putting more stress on him… We don’t have a lot of money as it is…
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