You want to stay with your kids and watch them grow. Of course, you do! As a work at home mom, it can be difficult to find opportunities that can work for you and your “schedule”. Hard deadlines aren’t ideal. You can’t leave the house at a moment’s notice and you’re not always available to take a call! I write on Textbroker and make enough to pay the bills and save a little while I build my business and pursue my other interests.
I’m always so confused whenever I see posts or videos about making a full-time income online and they start off talking about surveys or Amazon Mechanical Turk or something along those lines. It’s just not going to get you there! This option will probably allow you to pay your bills and hopefully, save money for the future.
Freelance Writing: Start on Textbroker and Go Anywhere
So, I recommend that you begin freelance writing – and before you yawn and click away – just wait. You can do this through several different avenues. If you’re just starting off, I would not actually recommend using a service like Upwork or Freelancer.com. This is because of the personal experiences I’ve had with those websites.
They can be OK, especially if you have a little bit of employment history as a freelance writer. But if you’re just beginning, it’s going to be difficult for you to get jobs on these sites. They are highly competitive.
Also, on some of these sites, you actually need to spend money on before you can make money.
More on Why I Don’t Recommend Using Mega-Freelancer Platforms to Start Writing
For example, on Freelancer.com you have to get certified for each specific skill set you’d like to earn money with. There are tests for content writing, proofreading, academic writing, technical writing, and the list goes on. While it’s not technically required to take these certification tests, it may as well be. Almost every freelancer on the site has several tests under their belt. Having a certification shows potential employers that you do have competitive skills that are related to the job they want you to complete.
You’ll have to take a certification test for level one English to start off with. Almost everyone there has this one completed. Then, if you want to stand out then you’ll have to take even more than that. The level one tests are all five dollars per test, per attempt. The level two tests are $10 per test, per attempt. In order to show potential clients that you have skills, you have to first spend money, which is not ideal when you’re first starting out.
In order to get jobs, you have to “bid” on projects and basically sell yourself, letting the client know why you’re the best pick. As someone with no previous reviews, you’ll often have to take on projects for laughably small payouts. Ouch. Even so, you can still be bidding on projects all day and never win one. That’s another thing – you only receive a certain number of bids per day with a free account. That’s right! You have to pay in order to get more “attempts” to win a job.
Additionally, jobs will be slow until you drum up some repeat business. I personally had a terrible experience using Freelancer.com but that’s a whole different blog post. I don’t recommend them either way. I know that there are a few people who are well-established on these kinds of platforms and use them to make a decent living – this is just my experience.
What I would recommend you to do to begin making money with your writing is to work on a site like Textbroker. Now, this is a content mill. So, you’re not gonna be getting paid an amazing rate – however, this is a great way to start off start out making money for your writing. And you will be getting paid a decent amount. Textbroker acts as a middleman – so the client cannot lowball you and you are not directly competing with other writer’s offers.
There’s no personal information shared, so you won’t know who you’re working for and the clients you work for will never know who you are. This can be a positive thing and negative thing.
- Clients cannot reach you by phone or email. If for some reason you receive an order from some crazy person, they can’t harass you in any way (except the Textbroker message center – and you can easily block them)
- You cannot get lowballed or exploited by customers who have established a relationship with you and know that you depend on your writing skills for income
- You’re still able to receive direct orders from clients who enjoyed working with you and liked your writing. You two can agree on a set rate that is well above your base Textbroker rate.
- You won’t be able to communicate with your favorite clients outside of Textbroker and work with them on other projects. They have to hire you through the site. This is a feature of all of these kinds of sites, though. It’s not specific to Textbroker.
How Textbroker Works
To get accepted as a Textbroker author, you’ll need to submit a writing sample. It’s not a very long one, maybe around 200 words if I remember correctly. They will rate your sample within a week, get back to you, and let you know what they rated you. Textbroker has a rating scale of 1 to 5 stars and as long as you are 2 stars or above, you will likely be accepted. The higher star level you are, the more you get paid and the more jobs will be available for you.
Next, you have to take a picture of yourself with your government-issued photo ID and submit that to the website. Once they verify your identity, you will be able to log in and view the open order job board. In order to get paid, you will have to submit a W9 form to them via mail, email or fax. They pay through PayPal and offer weekly payouts. Weekly is not a bad deal at all, especially in this industry.
The job board is organized by category (home & family, hobbies, health, etc.) as well as by star rating. You can complete jobs that are for star levels that are below yours but not above. For, example, if you’re a four-star author you can complete any of the orders that are four-star or below. Just know that if you complete a three-star level order as a four-star author, you are still only getting paid as though you’re a three-star author because that client paid to have a three-star author write that article. So it’s best to stick to articles that are your star level.
Also note that the difference in pay between star levels is fairly significant, especially between levels four and five. No one can start off on Textbroker as a little five-star author, however, you can become one within a few months to a year.
The first way you can become a five-star author on Textbroker is through the proofreading test. It’s actually quite difficult and you can only take it once every three months so make sure to study really hard if this is something that you want to do (and you should because the five-star level pay is well worth it).
Secondly, Textbroker will give feedback for the articles that you write on a fairly consistent basis. They will reevaluate your star level if you are constantly writing articles that are better or worse than your average article. So, make sure that you keep up the same quality or do better than you did when you submitted that original sample.
Categories and Topics Available to Write About
One of the things I like most about Textbroker is that you can browse all of the articles that are available to write by category and pick one that interests you. On other platforms, I always took what I could get and I was lucky to get one job after days and days of bidding on projects. With Textbroker, you can be pickier about the jobs you take on and write fewer articles that will bore your brains out. Chances are, along with the typical boring content writing jobs you can expect, you’ll find several per week that you truly enjoy writing.
I like writing about computers and tech, and I also know a lot about marketing and general business topics. I do have children, so I write about a lot of the family, home, and baby topics as well. Picking articles like these that I have a lot of experience with mean that I’m able to make a much better hourly rate than I would if I was writing any random article. I can bang these out in less than half the time that it would take if I was writing an article that I had to do extensive research for. They will probably be higher quality as well.
That being said, many of the articles I take on, I do have to do research for. But just know that if you have knowledge in specific areas, there will probably be quite a few articles here for you daily that you’ll be able to write without doing much research at all.
Finishing a Textbroker article and receiving payment
The process of taking an article from start to finish on Textbroker is pretty simple. They have a text editing page that you use in the in your browser. You can save your draft there, but I recommend that you type into Google docs or Word or something similar to have a backup of your work. Just in case!
Most of the articles on Textbroker do not have an extremely tight deadline, however, it’s common to need to complete an article within a day or two. You’ll just have to make sure that you are completing the articles before the specified time.
Once you complete an article, you’re able to pick up another one right away. You can only work on one article at a time. I think this is a good feature. It means that authors cannot hog up multiple articles. They can only work on one. This way, there are always tons of articles to choose from every day. I’m talking hundreds, if not thousands. I’m in four-star author and I never run out of articles to write.
When you submit an article, the client can accept it, request a revision, or reject it. There is not a very big rejection rate on Textbroker. Clients typically request a revision if they have a problem and this rarely happens to me. (You can actually view a client’s profile to see their personal revision and rejection rate before taking on a job from them!) After the client accepts your article, your funds are held until your next payout request (you can do that once a week).
It’s pretty simple! This is what you can realistically expect to make on this platform: As a three-star author, you can make a decent supplementary income. As a hardworking four-star author, it’s very possible to make 2k+ a month, at home with kids. As a five-star author, you earn over three times what a four-star author makes. If you’re able to write quality content without spending a ton of time doing it, this is a very viable option for you! If you go down this route, try to become a five-star. For obvious reasons! This is one of my current goals.
Most of these beautiful stock photos were provided by Ivorymix! Check out their site, they’ve got great stuff.