Freelancer Writers Being Taken Advantage Of?

Posted: October 13, 2014 in Freelancers
Tags: , , , , , , ,

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It’s my very first post. I created this blog because this epidemic needs to be stopped. And while I might go on rambling, and stray off the point here and there, I am sure that I will nail this thing, and many other freelancer writers will agree. So what is my point? As you can see from my headline, which is SEO optimized in some part of cyberspace, I am here to make some sort of statement or complaint. And that simply is: Freelance writers are being taken advantage of and are offered terrible wages for the content they produce. And I am certain that most of the clients don’t even know that they are doing this. What are they doing you ask? How about offering $2 for a 500 word article or even worse, one lousy $1 most of the time.

I think that the majority of clients who are looking for quality content do not realize that their content is the MOST important thing when it comes to their website. I get the feeling reading some of these job postings on Elance, that they must think their website is golden just because it looks nice and has a nice logo. What they don’t seem to realize is that their website content is going to either make or break them. Quality content is researched content. It is also content that is written with Search Engine Optimization in mind. I was taught how to write this content by experienced writers who knew exactly how headlines should be written, what words had to go into H tags (HTML tags), and how many keywords should be used per 500 words or ‘keyword density.

Back to my clients; They just do not understand this. And asking someone to write 15 pages of 500 words for $15 is ludicrous. Clients: You are asking for someone with no experience that has no idea what they are doing. They either live in India or the Philippines and have no idea what they are doing…please no offense to these people. I am sure some of them work very hard, but in truth they are a big part of the problem. They accept these wages and bring down the whole idea of VALUE and QUALITY, and throw it in the trash can. You can get someone to write 500 words of content for your website for $1. But be prepared to have someone else write this over again when their copy doesn’t get you ranked in the search engines. Be prepared to have a professional create the tone you were looking for that accurately describes your business or services, and be prepared to have someone rewrite your content that has proper grammar, spelling, and sentence structure that doesn’t make the reader fall asleep.

A revolution has to happen my fellow writers. There are a few things you can do to help this and stop this problem. I know there are clients out there that DO realize the value of paying more for website content that is awesome. So what do we do?

  1. Stop taking jobs for so little money. Just stop this now. If you are starving, I understand, and maybe you should find at least some part time work elsewhere. When you take jobs for so little money you are doing injustice to yourself as a qualified writer, and you will be setting the bar low for everyone else around you. Would you sell one of your eyeballs for $5? No? Then why are you selling your hard earned and learned talent for so little? And another thing: Do not take jobs for little money to just get feedback. There are smart people online offering feedback and VERY little money if you will write quality content for them. That feedback for the $1 article you just wrote…just tells everyone else what kind of prices they can expect from you. Do you want to advertise your low wages?
  2. Raise your prices. Wait…? Did you just say ‘Raise your prices’? You bet your sweet hiney I did. When you show on your Elance, Guru, oDesk, or whatever online profile you have, that you have a cost of $35 an hour, you show yourself as being a professional who knows what they are doing. You show everyone your expertise and your true worth. You bring curiosity to clients who wonder why you charge so much money. Again…why do we charge so much? Because ‘content is king’ and it makes or breaks a website. Why someone would want to trust $1 content to $30 content is beyond me.
  3. Write the best quality content. If you have been writing for some time and you’ve done some good work, then show this off in your portfolio. If you’re going to ask for decent wages then you better have decent content to show for it.
  4. Never stop learning. If you are writing Search Engine Optimized content, then you need to always stay on top of the game. SEO changes constantly, and Google changes their algorithms as much as I change my underwear. Keyword usage and keyword density has changed a lot over the years.

This is just a few things that we as writers should start doing. I’m tired of seeing jobs posted for ‘slave wages’ and my last client wanted me to take .30 cents for 35 30-40 word descriptions. No. The job before this I was paid $300 cash in hand after Elance fee’s for 50 product descriptions. I’m not stupid, I am not desperate, and if I wanted to be humiliated, I’d definitely find a better way or at least $5 per humiliation.

I’d like to hear what you have to say, come on…I know I missed something, and if I did, let me know.


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