Making money writing online—anyone with an internet connection, a love of writing, and some gumption can do it. Writing can be a rewarding side hustle to supplement your salary. Or if you have some serious guts, it could even become your main income.
Learning how to make money writing online content isn’t rocket science. And if you need mentorship, you should check out the How To Become A Freelance Writer Course.
The number of ways to make money writing online content is only limited by your imagination. Let’s break down six of the most common ways writers use the Internet to bring home the bacon:
- Product Reviews
- Content Writing
- Social Media
Blogging has been around since the Internet first started kickin’ it back in the early ’90s. And guess what? It isn’t going anywhere anytime soon.
In modern times, making money through blogging isn’t just for influencers or seasoned writers. It’s available to anyone who has a story to tell, a little bit of patience, and a whole boatload of commitment.
Because blogging, unlike other types of paid gigs, is a long-term game. In order to start seeing any cheddar from your blog posts, it’s critical to publish content consistently. If you can commit to blogging for the long haul, it can become a huge asset and income stream.
Luckily, starting a blog has never been easier.
You can choose to make your own website through hosting sites such as WordPress or Squarespace. Or you can try to start monetizing your blogs early through Medium.com, a popular blogging platform. Access to Medium articles behind the paywall only requires a small monthly fee and you can earn money through “claps” (their version of likes) right away.
The beauty of blogging is that you can write about anything you have expertise in or are willing to research. Love home decor? Interested in UX design? Got a knack for romance? You can blog about it!
Plus, blogging is a great way to connect with potential clients who might want you to help them with other types of writing gigs. If you really want to make money through writing, starting a blog is a great way to build a portfolio, gain exposure, and attract potential clients.
If you’re interested in checking out our #1 recommendation for building a website and starting a blog that will actually earn money one day, click here.
Many people have ideas they’d love to write about, but they don’t have the skills or time to actually write. Writing can be time-consuming and it takes a certain level of know-how that some people may not possess. As a ghostwriter, you can help these people create quality content that showcases their ideas.
It’s important to understand that ghostwriting means the content you create will have someone else’s name on it. Businesses or authors hire ghostwriters to write material that the ghostwriter won’t have a claim to. However, this also means that ghostwriters are often paid well compared to other writing gigs.
Consider carefully if you feel comfortable letting someone else take credit for your words. If you are fine with that, you may be able to earn some serious cash!
Here are some examples of content that someone may need a ghostwriter for:
- Nonfiction Books: This could include autobiographies, technical how-tos, or guides.
- Fiction Books: Sometimes publishers hire ghostwriters in order to capitalize on an established author’s name.
- eCourses: People or businesses with a lot of knowledge may want to create an online course to showcase their expertise and earn some money. They need ghostwriters to write their ideas down in a clear and easily understandable way.
- Articles: Business owners or executives often like to produce articles about their business to share with clients, but they may not have the skills or time to write for themselves.
- Speeches: Many orators need ghostwriters to help write compelling and effective speeches.
Typically, ghostwriters get started by first producing their own content. They get their own name out there enough for people who may be in need of their services to find them. Then, ghostwriters start building their credentials through writing articles about ghostwriting, writing for small publications or business, and building a portfolio.
Check out these 5 Self-Publishing Tips to help kick-start your ghostwriting career!
What someone else says about you is a thousand times more credible than what you say about yourself.
Businesses know this, which is why they hire writers to promote their products for them. Someone is much more likely to buy a product if a source outside the business promotes it honestly and fairly.
The goal of a product review is to educate consumers about new products. Reviewers highlight benefits, compare products to similar products and help foster enthusiasm in potential buyers.
Product reviewers can get started by reaching out to local businesses and offering their services in order to build a portfolio and gain testimonials. You can also start your own blog showcasing your product reviews. A blog can be a great way to start earning passive income through views or if someone buys one of the products you recommend.
There are also a whole host of websites dedicated to paying writers for reviews, and you can find a list of them here.
Ever heard of Mad Men? Yeah, they were copywriters. Very swanky copywriters, but copywriters nonetheless.
While blogging may have been around since the beginning of the internet, copywriting has been around since the written word.
And no, copywriting has nothing to do with copyright—which I totally thought of too when I first heard of it.
Copywriting is actually the act of using words to sell. Put another way, copywriting is turning a lead into a buyer through writing.
Before the internet, copywriting mainly consisted of ad campaigns and direct mail marketing. Businesses would send out thousands of the same letter to people’s mailboxes and hope for a response. Now, with the internet, businesses have seriously leveled up their copywriting game.
Examples of copywriting commonly used on the internet include:
- Product descriptions: Businesses need writers to write compelling and SEO (search engine optimization) rich descriptions for their products.
- Email Marketing: Email is a huge money-maker for businesses of all sizes. Email allows businesses to communicate directly with consumers, making it extremely profitable.
- Website Copy: Every website on the internet has copy. Any time a site recommends a product or offers a discount—that’s copy!
- Ad Campaigns: Again, think Don Draper. Ads are everywhere, and businesses pay good money for writers to develop them.
- Landing Pages: A landing page is a box that pops up when you go to a website offering a 25% discount (or another offer) in exchange for your email. Businesses need writers to write compelling landing pages that convince potential buyers to give them their email addresses.
As you may be able to tell, copywriting can be difficult. You have to have a good understanding of human nature and marketing strategies.
That’s why businesses will pay writers lots of money for high-quality copywriting. If you can spend an hour writing an email that generates hundreds of dollars in revenue, can you imagine what kind of pay you would get for that one hour?
Getting started as a copywriter is similar to getting started writing in any field. You can create copy for your own writing business or offer to work for free for local businesses in exchange for testimonials. These strategies help build your portfolio and credibility.
Anyone with a laptop can start a blog, which means any business with a website can too.
Many businesses have realized the benefits of content marketing and need writers to keep their blogs and “News” sections up-to-date. Of course, not everyone is well-suited to write content for blogs, so these businesses need to hire writers to do it for them.
Content marketing includes writing articles and blog posts for a website to showcase products, services, or other relevant information. These articles get posted to social media and sent out in newsletters to subscribers.
Content marketing is extremely valuable to businesses of all types because it improves their SEO, develops long-term relationships with customers, and builds brand loyalty.
If you love writing for your own blog, you may consider helping a business with theirs. Working with businesses can be a great way to make more money and keep doing what you enjoy.
The best thing about content writing is that almost every business imaginable needs it. As a content writer, you’ll want to choose a niche that you’re familiar with and then offer your services to businesses. Some profitable niches include:
- B2B (business to business) marketing
- Health and Wellness
- Real Estate
Lots of writers get started writing content through sites like Upwork, Fiverr, or Problogger. You can also contact businesses through phone or email and offer to write a few articles for them for free or at a low price in exchange for testimonials and the chance to build your portfolio.
Find out more details about getting clients for content writing in this post: How to Find Blogging Clients.
The last thing a business owner needs to think about is how many likes their Facebook posts are getting. But, as we all know, social media has taken the world by storm and every business wants to get in on the action.
That’s why businesses often hire a writer to create content for their social media pages. Businesses usually use sites such as:
Writers are ideally suited to help businesses with their social media because they know how to write engaging material for followers. If you have copywriting and content writing knowledge, that can also give you an edge because you know how to help engage followers long-term and convert them into clients.
Social media is a constantly evolving world, and it’s important to keep up-to-date with the newest trends, technologies, and resources.
Social media writers can start getting clients by building up their own social media platforms so they can showcase their talents to potential clients.
The internet is primarily a visual medium. That means that the written word is in high demand.
As more and more businesses move online and attempt to boost their web presence, writers with knowledge and experience in all types of fields will continue to be in-demand.
Even though there are more opportunities than ever before for writers to start making cash, it can still take time to establish your business and your brand. Start by setting up a writing website and producing content that you feel proud of.
As mentioned above, you can also sign up for sites such as Upwork, Fiverr, or other freelance job boards in order to get your name out there. You’ll also want to contact businesses directly, either through phone, email, or even popping in and speaking with them in-person.
If you’re starting out with little to no experience, it may be a good idea to offer your services as a volunteer so you can build a portfolio, connections, and experience.
Making money writing online is easier now than ever before, but that doesn’t mean it’s a cakewalk. It takes determination, perseverance, and a positive attitude.
If you’re serious about taking the plunge and earning money for your writing, go here to download the free How to Become a Freelance Writer eBook, or sign up for the in-depth course that will teach you how to jump-start your career as a writer.
About The Author
Grace Claman is a freelance writer living in Kansas, which really is not as boring a place as everyone likes to make it out to be. Grace is best known for her blog on Medium where she’s been published in popular publications such as The Writing Cooperative, The Ascent, and The Post-Grad Survival Guide.
Besides helping businesses with their online marketing, Grace enjoys speaking horribly broken Italian, reading fantasy novels, and swing dancing. She is currently rediscovering the magic that is Instagram and spends entirely too much time on it.