Looking for work as a freelancer can feel pretty challenging at first. There are so many sites out there, all offering you the promise of financial security and a free schedule. But if you've tried looking for freelance jobs before, you know it isn't that easy to just hop in and find something.
Thankfully, there are some genuinely good freelancing websites out there that aren't just scams looking for your cheap labor. Here are a few of the best ways to find real freelance writing gigs.
Job Boards and Freelancing Sites
Job boards are the go-to for most freelancers, mainly because most are free and don't require bidding. They typically charge businesses to post their gigs.
Keep in mind that job boards merely act as bulletin boards to put you in touch with potential clients; they’re different from freelancing platforms, which post jobs but also expect you to use the platform to submit the job and communicate with the client.
On ProBlogger, you'll find plenty of well-paying jobs, although there are also low-paying gigs too, so look for the details before you apply. Still, the jobs are high-quality and vetted to ensure they're the real deal.
Just like a typical job board like Indeed, you can create a profile with your resume to showcase your unique skills. From there, you can save and apply for any job you want.
BloggingPro lets you see tons of jobs, hiring full-time, part-time, freelance, or contract. It posts jobs from all around the United States, including many remote options. Just click to apply and have a resume and a reference handy just in case. The website also offers guides for helping you get your freelance work going if you have a few bucks to spare.
After a quick application and writing sample, you'll be set to start writing as much as you want. With the iWriter system, you'll move up the ranks until you can earn up to $80 on a 500-word article. You get paid 65% of the total cost of any article, but if you get consistently good ratings, you can move up pretty quickly to an Elite Plus writer for those higher payouts.
Freelance Writing Jobs
From internships to online contracts to full-time jobs, you can find whatever you need on Freelance Writing Jobs. You can also submit guest posts and articles to the site for the chance to be featured on their site and social media posts. Besides that, there are dozens of options for editing, copywriting, journalism, and other freelance opportunities.
Freelance Writer's Den
Famous freelancer Carol Tice started the Writer's Den in 2011. It opens regularly for writers to join a community dedicated to helping them succeed. The Den provides regular courses and 24/7 support in online forums as well to help you succeed as the excellent writer that you are.
If you've got a hankering for a media job, MediaBistro is for you. Not only will you find tons of great courses, but you'll be connected with some of the top media companies out there. This site has jobs with giants like HBO, Fox News, CNN, Penguin Random House, and more! There are plenty of opportunities for writing, editing, and other skills.
If you're a freelancer, you'll want to be set up on LinkedIn. From their businesspeople-centered platform, you can connect with professionals in any field you want. Plus, they have a dedicated job board where you can search for any kind of job you're looking for.
Freelance Writing Jobs
Freelance Writing Jobs is the perfect spot to find a job for your skill level. On every posting, you'll find the pay rate and the level that this relates to (Low, Semi-Pro, Pro, etc.). It also has a helpful word count tracker and keyword density analyzer to help you do your best work and fit every client's needs perfectly.
FlexJobs is one of the top-rated job sites in the world for finding legitimate, flexible, work-from-home positions. If you don't want to jump into full-time freelancing right away, this site is a great one for finding part-time gigs that won't take up too much time. Plus, every job is highly vetted by experts to ensure you're working with good people.
Upwork is one of the most popular professional freelancing sites. You build your profile, apply to jobs, and connect with professionals from all around the world.
However, there is a BIG drawback. When working with Upwork, a percentage of everything you earn is taken by the platform. So, while you'll probably find lots of jobs on here, keep in mind that you won't be getting everything you deserve. It might be better to start with other options first to ensure you aren't missing out on hard-earned money.
Guru is a popular job site for writers and translators. It works by allowing writers to post writing samples or sample blog posts on their profiles. Then, writers can bid on potential clients' projects, or clients can approach writers in whom they're interested in specific projects.
Guru also offers its writers a virtual workspace to allow you to invoice clients or work with other writers. Although Guru does charge fees for its usage, its writers are also able to set their own rates and can customize invoices to be sent on their ideal schedule.
If you're looking for a job site where potential clients are looking to hire freelancers who are comfortable writing for digital marketing projects and/or high-tech operations, Freelancer.com may be a great first stop. Although there are hundreds of writing gigs on Freelancer.com, most of them are more focused on copywriting, technical writing, and translations.
The website, similar to others described here, allows writers to bid on projects that can range from brief assignments to longer-term opportunities. If you're looking for an online job that allows you to make money with your writing skills, Freelancer.com is worth checking out.
In the field of content creation and social media engagement, Constant Content is a giant. They focus on allowing freelance writers to generate content for websites, blogs, and social media accounts, ranging from SEO-friendly blog posts to industry-specific articles.
Writers have the option to respond to a call for articles or write material for an on-demand content catalog that potential clients can shop from directly. If you're interested in digital marketing or have a specialized area of expertise, Constant Content may be home to a great writing opportunity for you.
The Writer Finder
Just as its name suggests, The Writer Finder specializes in finding freelance writers and pairing them with potential clients looking for writers with specific skill sets. How does it work? Clients pay a fee to be matched with 3-5 writers, and then they select the one with whom they're interested in working.
Writers are promised a steady stream of work and the ability to write about a wide variety of topics. As one of the newer job sites on this list, The Writer Finder is an intriguing project that could appeal to a wide range of freelance writers looking for a unique challenge.
Contena is a job site with a clean interface and easy-to-navigate design that offers plenty of opportunities for freelance writers. Writers on Contena are able to show off their writing portfolios to attract potential clients, take courses and receive coaching from other users, and set their own rates. Although writers are required to pay a fee to access the site, Contena prides itself on offering enough high-quality, well-paying job opportunities to make up for it.
As one of the most popular content creation sites on the web, Textbroker is a great resource for anyone looking for freelance writing gigs related to content creation or website content. Textbroker also offers translation services and prides itself on providing content in any field, so if you have a rare or unusual area of expertise, Textbroker may be a great place to help you find potential clients in need of your knowledge. With past clients such as eBay and Staples, Textbroker could be an effective tool to kickstart your freelance career.
Personal and Professional Connections
As straightforward as job boards and freelancing sites are, your personal connections could be more effective gateways than you think in your freelancing career. Consider these ways to tap into those resources.
Friends, Family, and Colleagues
Networking is one of the most important things you can do as a freelancer. Whether or not you're good at selling your talents, you're sure to need good references once in a while.
Get connected with people who may need your work or who have seen it before, so they can promote you to others. Keep in touch with them and keep up a hefty online presence so people can look you up and know exactly what you're about.
Your LinkedIn Network
As mentioned above, LinkedIn is the place to go if you need to connect with professionals. You can post on your page and include in your profile that you're a freelancer looking for work. That way, when people suddenly realize they need help with a good article, they know who to reach out to.
LinkedIn also recently enabled a feature for users to show on their profiles that they are "open to work," and you can list your services at the top of your profile as well. All of this makes it easier than ever for clients to find you when they need you.
Social media may be a distraction when you're trying to write, but it can also be an essential tool for finding work when you need it. There are at least 12 great freelance writing groups on Facebook that you can join, and you can probably find more.
These groups are the perfect spot to engage with other freelancers for support, find clients posting jobs, and enjoy your craft with coworkers from around the world. There's a group for every stage and every age.
We all need a mentor or two to help us get going. Find other freelancers, whether on LinkedIn, Facebook, or an official freelancing site, and get to chatting.
You can ask questions about anything that's confusing you--how much to charge, how to apply to jobs, how to pick the perfect subjects to write about, and so much more. If there's a freelancer out there whose work you admire, try reaching out to them first. Most of them will be delighted to help. And one day, maybe you'll be the one giving out the advice!
Curated Professional Groups
Check out sites like Meetup to search for professional networking groups in your area. You have a chance to join freelancing groups where you can learn and interact with other freelancers. They can refer clients to you when they're fully booked in the future.
Others like groups for startups will give you direct access to potential clients. The chances are that there are groups in your area for any specialty or industry.
The secret is to actively engage with people during your scheduled socializing time. Ask them about some of their pain points so you immediately see someone who might require your services.
Yes, it can be scary to seek out verbal or written approval from someone. But it's important! If you have clients who love working with you, wish you could help them more, or are no longer working with you but want to help you, ask if they'd be willing to give a referral (or a simple testimonial). If they appreciated your work, they'll likely be delighted to suggest your services to anyone they know who might need them.
Building Your Brand
Another top avenue toward finding new freelance writing jobs is to get clients to come to you by establishing a reputation as a well-known, reliable, talented writer. Try these strategies.
If you've got a ton of knowledge in a particular area, guest posting is a great way to get your name out there for other clients to see. Many companies are looking for guest writers to help them improve their SEO, so it shouldn't be too hard to find somewhere to put out your best work and build an audience with someone else's platform.
Creating Your Website (With a Blog)
Most people go immediately to someone's website before considering doing business with them. It's essential for you to have your own site set up so they can see what you've written. This is especially important if you're just starting out, as this allows potential clients to get a taste of what you can do even if you have nothing published yet.
Optimize your site so that clients can easily find it when they search for terms like “startup content writer for B2B” or whatever they need. The landing page should clearly state how you can help propel their business to new heights.
As you advance, you can start writing blog posts that address your audience’s pain points. You can even guest post on more established blogs and link back to your own blog to expand your clientele.
Is there an organization you've been dying to write for? It might sound frightening to simply send an email out of the blue, but it's really easier than you think. Let them know how you found out about them, why you love their work, what you could do for them, and what you've accomplished in the past.
Cold pitching is a more straightforward approach, but warm pitching allows you to build a rapport with potential clients. With warm pitching, you follow desirable clients in your niche and then engage with the content they post. It can be something as simple as liking and replying to their tweets or congratulating them on LinkedIn for their achievements.
This allows you to build a connection with them such that when you later pitch to them, they'll be more likely to say yes. Other times, they might just contact you directly if they check out your profile, but approaching them is your best shot.
Hosting Informational Seminars
Hosting webinars or conference presentations can be a daunting yet life-changing opportunity for most freelancers. If it's too big a leap, you can invite other freelancers to share the stage with you. You'll get to display your expertise in front of a larger audience without having to bear all the weight.
Your sessions should have topics that reel in your ideal audience. For example, if you’re targeting B2B startups and you post that you will discuss “The Basics of B2B Marketing,” most startup owners will be sure to pause and sign up for the presentation.
You do need to advertise it on sites where your audience hangs out and structure your ad in a compelling way, which should be no problem for copywriters.
Becoming a Successful Freelancer
As you find freelance writing gigs and build your client base, it can be slow going at first but don't give up. If you follow these important steps, you'll be well on your way to crushing it as a successful freelance writer!