Are you seeking a change in your career or just want to start making money on the side? Freelance writing is an awesome way to earn some money. You don’t need a specific degree, and it affords you a lot of flexibility to write when you want. But knowing how to become a content writer with no experience can be daunting.
If you don’t have a network and haven’t written before, it can be difficult to know where to begin. Thankfully, there are a number of freelance writing jobs for beginners with no experience.
While you’ll need to put in a bit of work to get established, there are many resources available to help you get started.
What is freelance writing?
Freelance writing is simply a self-employed person who makes a living from writing. That can be writing content like articles, blog posts like this one, white papers, web copy, or anything else that requires text.
Freelance writers often have a number of clients and work from cafes or coworking offices. It’s also a popular career among digital nomads.
It’s a job that you can do from anywhere there is an internet connection. In fact, 28% of digital nomads are freelancers.
What do you need to get a writing job with no experience?
If you want to know how to become a freelance writer with no experience, you’ll first need to be sure you have the right tools.
For the most part, you’ll just need a laptop, email, and internet connection. Some clients may ask you to communicate with them through apps like Slack, Asana, or Trello. You’ll need to open accounts with them and know how to use them.
Different clients will have different requirements for invoicing as well, so you may need to set up an account with their accounting software to ensure you’re paid on time.
How much do freelance content writers earn?
To figure out how to become a content writer with no experience, you’ll need to know how much money you can make. The number is a bit broad. It depends on several factors, including what you’re writing about and the budget of your clients.
According to Payoneer, the average freelancer makes $28 an hour. And according to a survey by Peak Freelance, most writers with less than a year of experience can expect to make less than $30,000 a year.
However, the longer you write, the more money you’ll likely make. About 18% of freelancers made $31,000 to $50,000 a year recently, while only 9% of freelance writers made over $100,000.
The other thing to note is, that as you gain experience, it will take you less time to complete articles. So while it might take you an hour to write 200 words when you first start out, after a few months, you could be hitting 500 words an hour or even more.
And since many places pay per article or word, your overall hourly rate will increase over time, and you’ll be able to take on more work.
Where to start with how to become a content writer with no experience
There are lots of freelance writing jobs for beginners with no experience. You’ll likely have to accept less pay until you gain a bit of experience.
If you are in the beginning stages of your freelance writing career, here are some tips for what you can do to build your portfolio, find clients, and start your career:
Start your own blog
One way to find out how to get a writing job with no experience is to start a blog. This allows you to practice your skills on specific topics that you want to get paid to write. And if you grow a decent following, you can even monetize your work through ads.
You can easily use a web hosting site like WordPress to create a professional-looking site even if you have a limited budget. The great part is that you can then send these clips to prospective clients as examples of your writing style.
Look for jobs on sites
There are a few freelance writing jobs for beginners with no experience on various job sites.
Look for job postings with content writing, freelance writing, or blogger in the title. Be sure to look up the companies before you apply, though, as there are scams on some job listings.
Write guest posts
Another way to learn how to become a freelance writer with no experience is to write guest posts on other blogs. While some might pay you to write for them, others will allow you to write for free in exchange for building up your portfolio.
Finding a high-authority site can help you build your portfolio and give you more experience to hone your craft. To find places where you can guest post, do a google search of your niche with the phrase “write for us.” Then find out the requirements and send an inquiry!
Create a portfolio
If you want to be a freelance writer, you need to have a portfolio. A writing portfolio is a place online with an example of all the places you’ve written for, whether paid or unpaid. Building up your portfolio is the key to getting more work.
Clients will often ask to see your portfolio to determine if you’re writing style and niche fit what they are looking for. You can set up a portfolio for free on sites like Contently or create your own portfolio and website with WordPress.
Set up an account on a content writing site
Sometimes you can learn how to get a writing job with no experience by setting up an account on a content writing site, like Fiverr, Upwork, or Skyword. These sites let you post your example content and get clients from a variety of different niches.
For example, with Upwork, you can get set up as a content writer with a simple content writing test. You can advertise the type of work you offer and set your own rates.
If you’re just starting out, then it’s best to set a lower rate. Once you get more content writing experience, you can increase your rates.
Join Facebook groups
Figuring out how to become a content writer with no experience can be difficult. This is why I highly suggest looking for freelance writing Facebook groups. It’s the perfect way to network with other freelancers and get advice on things like contracts and rates.
Many of these groups often post listings for freelancers. Some freelancers will pass on clients if they are too busy or if it’s for a niche they don’t have the expertise in.
Gain SEO knowledge
Another way to learn how to get a writing job with no experience is to learn search engine optimization or SEO. This is many times the bread and butter of a good blog or website. It helps companies rank on Google and, in turn, get customers.
While companies might have an SEO manager who tackles the ins and outs of how to rank on Google, having an understanding of SEO can help you stand out from others. You can take free courses on Hubspot or Udemy.
One of the best ways to learn how to become a freelance writer with no experience is to cold pitch. This can be scary at first. But the most negative thing that can happen is they say no.
The best way to cold pitch is to research the company beforehand and find out about them. Try to identify ways that you can help them by either suggesting a few blog posts or making some SEO suggestions. Then reach out to them by email and see if they respond.
You can learn how to become a content writer with no experience!
If you really want to learn how to become a content writer with no experience, you’ll need to have a lot of patience and do your research. Freelance writing can be a rewarding and lucrative career, especially if you write about a specific topic.
Learn the basics of SEO, start your own blog, and sign up for content writing sites. Once you land your first client, the rest will fall into place.