Becoming an online content writer wasn’t what I had in mind when I started searching the Internet for ways to make money from home. I had heard about working from home through a series being showcased on Good Morning America, where a self made business woman introduced ideas and legitimate companies where people could find work from home. I was intrigued as I had been looking for a supplemental income for several weeks when I ran across the series. I wanted to be able to supplement my income without sacrificing what little time I had with my family. I was working a good paying full time job, but when the economy tanked and we were asked to take a pay cut, I was left wondering how I was going to pay for everything. I was grateful to learn that no one was being laid off, however, taking a pay cut wasn’t exactly the best news I’d received, either. I needed a way to make extra money and not sacrifice what precious little time I had to spend with my family.
I looked through the various job offerings listed and found a multitude of customer service companies where I could take calls at home. I had call center experience and knew that I would be in a shoe in, but they were offering $8 and hour and I would have to separate myself from the family. I would still be at home, yet I wouldn’t get to reap the benefits. Plus, I wasn’t sure about how I felt working on the clock and committing to certain hours since my children’s after-school activities were plentiful and varied. I always tried to instill in my children that if you couldn’t commit, don’t make the commitment. I found various other opportunities, but the one that caught my eye was Associated Content. I could write 400 word articles for money on a variety of topics, plus, if other people read my content, I could make revenue sharing bonuses. I didn’t really understand about revenue share at the time, but hey…a bonus is a bonus.
I signed up in February 2009 and began my online writing career. I wrote and received anywhere from $2 to $3 per article I published. Revenue sharing bonuses were slim and pretty much irrelevant since they were only paid once per month. The upfront fees I was paid for the various articles I wrote were paid within a few days and the more I wrote, the more I got paid. I went from $3 per week to $50 per week pretty quickly, though I want to stress that I wrote A LOT during this time.
Then I started getting bummed by my limited opportunities and thought…if there’s one site out there like this, there’s got to be more. That’s when I discovered the truth about the online content industry. There are hundreds of sites out there willing to accept your writing on just about anything in exchange for a few bucks. I have signed up for many, some of which I am writing for, others that I tried and simply moved one. There are pros and cons to each one and while you should have no expectation of getting rich from writing, you can earn a good second income and some even make a decent living from it alone. I’ve not been able to take that leap of faith just yet, even though I know in my heart that I can do it. There’s just something to be said about having a full time job, but for those of you that are out there without that luxury, or, like me, need a steady source of extra income you can make from home, try online content writing.
I would like to say that as of this publication, I am currently averaging around $1000-$1200 a month writing. I have had months where I have been able to land over $2000, but in my world, that kind of effort is unsustainable. I have currently changed my focus from straight upfront payments to creating a residual income base (remember the revenue share?). By writing and publishing on revenue share sites that pay you a residual for each pageview, I can create a passive income stream each month to supplement my upfront only income, easing my monthly production goal burdens.
If you are interested in checking out online writing, try a few of these sites. Some are tougher to crack than others, but understand that making money is not going to happen overnight. You’ll need time to perfect your craft and understand how to write for online venues.
Associated Content- Upfront payments and revenue share
Mahalo- Revenue share
Textbroker-Upfront payment only
eCopywriters-Upfront payment only
Demand Studios-Upfront only or Revenue share only
Suite 101-Revenue share
Helium-Upfront and Revenue share
SEED-Upfront and Revenue share
And these are only a few. There are various websites and blogs dedicated to ferreting out these opportunities and reviewing them for you. Take a look around and see if you can find your niche! Good luck and happy writing!