Sumit is an experienced content marketer and editor with hands-on expertise in writing social media posts, articles, and blogs.
Working in Uncertain Times
The world has changed.
Since the coronavirus outbreak swept across the world, everything that was once normal earlier has changed.
Besides changes in our daily lifestyle, there is a significant shift in the way we work.
The regular routines of 9-5 seem to be a thing of the past, at least temporarily. It is because whenever feasible, work and workers have moved to the virtual platform.
In this near-apocalyptic scenario, a sizeable number of people have turned to freelance writing. I have seen in the job boards where thousands of people are applying for one position.
Another noticeable trend is many fraudsters or scammers, disguised as recruiters, in various social media groups, luring and duping people into doing jobs they won't get paid for.
These instances motivated me to pen this article, because many freelance writers seem to be unaware of some of the best freelance platforms available.
I got projects from most (if not all) of these online platforms. Recruiters on some of these sites have relatively stringent requirements. However, if you follow the instructions and match your experience and skill to the requirements, you can land lucrative projects.
ProBlogger is the brainchild of Darren Rowse, who set up this website in September 2004, and has not looked back. I came to know about the website in 2015 during random online research on Google.
I put this website on the top of the list because the quality of the projects and pay rates are usually better than most other sites.
I got some of my best-paying clients on this site. However, it was never easy since most recruiters have stringent requirements, and you need to read the entire job post before applying.
When you open ProBlogger, click on “Jobs” on the top menu bar. On the next page, you will find options such as “Contract,” “Freelance,” “Full-time,” and “Part-time.” Select the checkboxes and click “Filter Results,” and it will filter job posts accordingly.
Many job posts specifically mention hiring only “native English speakers,” which you may find disappointing despite having all the eligibility. Look for posts that mention “Anywhere” as the location, to save your time.
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Follow the employers’ instructions on the application procedure. Do not forget to add a few published samples, preferably from relevant industries. Then click “Send Application” and hope for the best!
2. Hubstaff Job Portal
Hubstaff is the site from which I received the most responses from recruiters. The pay rates may not be as high as ProBlogger, but they are still decent.
If you wish to look for freelance writing projects, type "talent.hubstaff" on Google, and once the site comes up, click “Browse Jobs.” When the next page comes up, on the left sidebar, under the “Skills” field, you can search with skills such as “Writing,” “Content Writing,” “Blogpost” and other skills.
Skills related to these keywords will auto-generate. You can also select suitable options under the “Job type” section. Other filters are available, including “Pay rate,” “Budget,” “Experience level,” “Countries,” and “Languages.”
You can also search for jobs with keywords in the “Search jobs” bar on the top. Now, you are ready to go through the filtered or searched job posts and apply for them. It is that easy.
LinkedIn is perhaps the world's largest professional network with nearly 660 million users worldwide.
Once you log on to LinkedIn, click “Jobs” on the top bar. On the next screen, you can search by putting your skills in job search fields. For example, you can search with the keyword “freelance writing,” which will populate plenty of job posts. You can apply directly with your uploaded CV on LinkedIn.
I, however, never got projects by directly applying to this site. All my leads have been inbound communications. I will tell you how.
I first started publishing articles on LinkedIn in 2015, and the response was okay. Writing and publishing quality articles on LinkedIn will help you build your portfolio, so I kept sharing my website blogs and articles published on other sites on LinkedIn. After reading these blog posts, several recruiters dropped me messages from time to time, asking to write for them. Several of my associations with these recruiters have been long term.
You can try both ways simultaneously. However, keep publishing and sharing on LinkedIn to enhance your portfolio.
4. Freelancewriting.com and Morning Coffee Newsletter
Freelance Writing is probably one of the oldest websites for freelance projects. The website was founded in 1997 when the Internet was relatively new.
I got my first project from the site in 2011, a story for Canada-based publication for its Memorial Day issue. The overall experience was great.
There are daily job postings on Freelance Writing, and I bet you will find many job posts suitable for your profile. If you subscribe to the website’s Morning Coffee Newsletter, you will receive the latest postings delivered to your inbox. Give it a try.
Upwork is arguably the largest bidding-based freelance platform. It began its journey way back in 1999 as Elance, and then again in a new avatar as oDesk in 2003. Later, Elance and oDesk merged into a single entity and became Elance-oDesk. In 2015, the website became "Upwork."
Whatever the name, the site's objective was the same: providing a platform to freelancers and businesses to collaborate remotely. Some of the most successful freelancers work on Upwork, and they have built their unique brand and clientele.
I first created my profile on Upwork in 2014 but did not start working until 2019, because I was not willing to get into a bidding war. Last year, after doing a bit of research on successful Upworkers, I updated my profile and began sending customized proposals.
Until recently, Upwork used to provide 60 free connects to freelancers, and after that, users need to buy credits to place their project bids. You can buy a minimum 10 connects for $1.50. The website also has two membership plans – Basic (free) and Plus.
I bought 10 connects once after using up all my 60 free connects. I received 3-4 average-paying projects and one high-paying project, and some of those clients are still with me.
To make yourself stand out on Upwork, you need to have a good profile, preferably with client testimonials and high ratings (4 or 5). Long-term success in Upwork will depend on these factors.
If bidding is not your thing, then instead of spending time on Upwork, you can directly apply to jobs on job portals or other freelance writing websites.
This is another popular site for freelancers. Besides writing jobs, this site has plenty to offer for designers, customer service, virtual assistants, marketing, and more.
You can simply search for suitable freelance jobs by typing a keyword on the “Search Job” field. Once the search result comes up, you can directly apply through the website. The whole process is simple and easy.
Freelancer is one of the biggest freelance platforms with a similar bid-based system as Upwork. However, the difference is you can submit your proposal on Freelancer for free.
Optional upgrades are available on the site, called Sponsored, Sealed, and Highlight. The website claims that these paid options provide an edge to freelancers over others while bidding. However, I have never verified it.
Dynamite Jobs has emerged as one of the popular job portals for remote workers. The website has a simple interface that is easy to navigate. There are fresh job postings, including full-time and remote work.
You can get the details of every job post on this site by just clicking it, which will expand the header with the job description.
The job categories are clearly defined on the left side, and clicking the checkboxes will filter the related jobs right away.
You can also filter jobs based on the "Type." For example, if you are only interested in freelance projects, just check the box next to "Freelance/Project Based."
Freedom with Writing is an online magazine for freelance jobs/gigs, and it is free. If you subscribe to their weekly newsletter, you will receive news feeds about plenty of freelance opportunities in your mailbox.
The job opportunities the website contains both fiction and non-fiction gigs from different parts of the world.
In addition, the website also provides free downloadable articles with tips on writing and publishing books. It is a useful website for freelance writers who seek to expand their horizons with quality international writing projects.
We Work Remotely claims that it is the No.1 online source of great remote jobs and gets more than 2.5 million monthly visitors.
Well, I have not verified the authenticity of these facts. I came across the website on Google and browsed freelance jobs there.
There are both full-time and freelance jobs, not just in writing, but also in marketing subdomains.
When browsing jobs there, you will notice the type of job mentioned just below the position, such as "Full-Time/Anywhere (100% Remote) Only," "Contract," "Full-Time" or "Contract" North America/Europe/USA Only, and so on. You need to get yourself registered to apply for jobs.
Indeed reportedly receives 25 crore (250 million) unique visitors every month and has a repository of 17 million resumes.
The job portal has a simple and clean interface, and with a vast reach. The resume building section on this website is comprehensive and easy to edit.
If you click "Find Jobs" and enter "Freelance Content Writing," the result will show hundreds of writing jobs in India and abroad. You can even narrow down your search according to a specific state or city.
When you apply for a job in Indeed, the site will keep providing you the updated status via emails: for example, whether a potential employer has viewed your resume or shortlisted you for the job.
It is a good platform for full-time, part-time, and freelance writing jobs.
To be honest, finding a suitable gig on Facebook is like looking for a needle in the haystack.
Facebook has hundreds of groups where many individuals and companies post short- and long-term writing positions. However, you will feel overwhelmed with the number of scammers whose sole purpose is to get their jobs done without paying the writers.
You have to keep your eyes and sixth sense on high alert while finding gigs on Facebook. If you see job posts that seem too good to be true, they may have been posted by scammers.
Many potential employers may ask for a free writing sample. My advice is not to give one. If they insist, you can offer to write a 150-word piece.
I found a few good clients on Facebook groups in the past and am still working with them. So not all employers on Facebook are frauds.
I hope this list of online sources will give you some good platforms to get consistent writing gigs. This is not an exhaustive list. In fact, there are hundreds of such resources, but including all of them would need several write-ups. Maybe I will be able to do that soon.
Please let me know of any good website that has worked for you so that I can include it in the next posts. I will be glad if you put your comments or inputs to make the posts interactive. Stay safe and happy!
This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.
© 2020 Sumit Chakrabarti
Sumit Chakrabarti (author) from Kolkata on July 30, 2020:
Thanks Suchismita! I am glad that you have found it helpful!
Suchismita on July 28, 2020:
Thanks for sharing this article.
Its really helpful.
Sumit Chakrabarti (author) from Kolkata on July 27, 2020:
Thank you Peggy! I am glad to know that you find the article informative.
Peggy Woods from Houston, Texas on July 27, 2020:
It is always informative to see what other opportunities for writers are available. Thanks for assembling this list.
Sumit Chakrabarti (author) from Kolkata on July 27, 2020:
Thank you John for your comment. It's great to know that you are getting a steady flow of work on Fiverr. I have never worked on Fiverr. Will sure give it a try. I will also include the website in this list when I will next update it. Thanks again!
John Hansen from Gondwana Land on July 27, 2020:
Helpful article, Sumit. I do subscribe to Freedom With Writing and it does have good resources as well as regular websites, publishers, magazines etc that Pay for articles, stories, poetry etc.
I am a freelance writer on Fiverr.com and like it because you don’t have to bid for jobs. Most buyers approach you. Since Covid-19 began I am getting constant writing jobs, so much I fact it is becoming almost full-time. I don’t have time to freelance anywhere else.