I’ve been trolling the freelance writing job boards practically every day for the past five years. All of them. I read Craigslist, use the Indeed search engine, and visit a variety of other job boards and networks including Journalism Jobs and Media Bistro. As noted in another post, even if I wasn’t looking to place leads here, I still like to check the job boards because it indicates the nature of freelance writing. I can see trends in who is hiring and who is paying.
I’d love to share some of those trends with you here.
Rates are going up for Web and Blog Gigs: When I began writing, there were many sites and individuals paying $1 to $5 per article. In fact, it was rare to find blogging gigs earning more than $5. While there are still plenty of clunkers out there, I’m noticing a trend in higher blog post and web content rates. Now, the lowest rate I see for most web content is $10 and I’m seeing plenty of $45 and above payers. For blogs, I’m seeing the bottom rate as being $25 to $50 per post. This was almost unheard of when I was starting out and these type of web writing gigs were very desirable. Plus, when I began freelancing, web type jobs for $100 or more were practically unheard of. Now I find at least a couple of these each day.Private clients are still the way to go for the highest paying freelance writing jobs. They’re advertising for a variety of projects, many paying well over $250.
If there’s one area in which I’m finding a downturn it’s with resume writing. While many resume writers claim to bring in $200 for a single resume and $500 for a resume/cover letter “package,” those who are looking on the job boards to hire resume writers only seem to want to pay about $50.
More businesses are hiring freelance writers: I’m seeing more and more big name brand businesses looking for freelancers as opposed to full timers. This tells me they’re feeling a budget crunch and don’t want to pay the overhead for a full time staff writer. This, of course, is good news for us. Something to keep in mind is how many businesses are looking for writers to work on site, full time, without offering the benefits of a full time opportunity. If that’s you’re thing, cool. However since freelancers are looking for flexibility the full time, on site gigs don’t really afford that.
More clients are asking for a rate quote: One of the reasons so many newer freelancers aren’t sure how to quote a rate, is because plenty of potential clients are dictating what they want to pay in their ad, and there’s no negotiation. The clients are setting the rate. Lately I’m seeing more clients who are asking for a quote. This can be the case for a variety of reasons. For example, they might be looking for the lowest bid. Also, they might not be sure of what to pay freelancers. I find that many private clients are willing to pay for quality, so freelance writers shouldn’t be afraid to quote what they feel they deserve.
More businesses are looking into social media: I’m finding more gigs for bloggers, community mangers, social media evangelists and more. Businesses are beginning to embrace social media as a marketing tool. Get in while the getting is good.
More job board spam: You know you’re as frustrated about this as the rest of us. More places are advertising in every single city in every single state on every single job board. Lordy. I’m good with a few strategically placed ads each week, but please, the feeds? They have to go.
What are some of the trends you’re noticing for freelance writing and freelance writing jobs?