A freelance content writer who is paid to write blogs and marketing content is going to be skilled at generating original content in short amounts of time that have excellent grammar, broad vocabulary, and proper calls to action for your website.
But how do you know if you’re getting the real deal?
A true freelance writer will meet all your criteria and those described below. It’s critical that you don’t have rock-bottom price requests for your content pieces because then the quality will ultimately suffer.
Google looks at long-form content that adds value when indexing your website. A freelance writer should understand this and be priced mid-to-high range. A mid range is $.15 per word while a high end would be $1 per word.
Take these actions and make them part of the hiring process so you’ll be sure to get the right person that fits with your requirements.
Hire a Content Writer Native to Your Country
The first and most important goal is to find someone native to your country or the country you’re writing for. It’s tempting to take the lowest bidder, who will be foreigners, but doing so risks your SEO, customer impressions, and overall writing quality.
There is much competition for your business, so finding something that works in your budget shouldn’t be hard.
Spend Time Talking to the Blog Writer
The second step is to communicate with them to ensure they speak as well as they say they write. Never forsake the value of face-to-face conversation (even if it’s done via Skype or Google Hangouts) in today’s world of scams and content fakes.
If you don’t like technology, then ask the writer to send you a video clip describing their fit for the job. You can ask them to put it on YouTube, host it on their website, or embed it in your email.
It’s important that you can communicate well with a writer. More importantly, ensure they understand your needs and can express those needs verbally.
Check the Blog Writer’s Content for Plagiarism
Third, always check your new writer’s work against a plagiarism checker. Don’t pay for work that has been copied and doesn’t pass at a 98% originality rate or better. The 2% gap should only be quoted comments from other bloggers or experts.
What is plagiarism? It’s the act of copying someone else’s writing and acting as if it was your own.
Some websites where you can check for plagiarized content are available for free, but Copyscape is the most popular paid site for checking work. Here are a few plagiarism checkers you can try:
- Small SEO Tools Plagiarism Checker – You simply cut and paste up to 1,000 words into the box and it compares sentences across the Internet.
- Copyscape – Here you’ll put in a URL of a published post to check for duplicate content online, but there are other features available to paid members.
- Plagiarisma – This can be used with documents or URLs and is free. It aligns with many online resources like Google Scholar for a thorough investigation.
- DupliChecker.com – You get 50 free searches per day, and those searches can be pasted articles or uploaded DOCX files.
- PlagScan – This tool searches billions of online sources using a copy and paste interface.
Look at the Writer’s Entire Digital Footprint
Writers should have a digital footprint, which is their presence on the web. It consists of blogs, social media, and websites. Look for some popular blogs they may contribute to in their niche, which gives them some credibility, since popular sites may have stricter quality standards.
A writer will also have their own blog and website. While looking at samples is obviously important, you want to look at the big picture. This includes determining the traffic and level of engagement on their blog posts and social media profiles. Having high traffic and engagement is a great sign that they have worked hard on inbound marketing.
Make Sure the Writer is Quick to Respond
Communication is essential to a great working relationship. How quick does the writer respond to your emails or phone calls?
As a business, it’s important that writers respond quickly and offer quick turnaround. This is determined by whether they are full-time, part-time, or hobbyists.
Full-time writers are organized and keep task lists to manage their days. They are also tied to their email and phones waiting for the next client to respond.
Part-time writers may also be dedicated, but the hours they work may vary according to other jobs they may have. Make sure their availability works with your business’ time zone and schedule.
Realize Prices Should Correspond to the Writer’s Skill
Many businesses want to pay as little as possible for writing, because they don’t see the value it provides. A good writer will help you understand that a long-term commitment is needed to effectively use content marketing as a way to drive traffic.
You also don’t want to pay top dollar for a writer’s work that isn’t well-researched. Their article or ebook should contain outbound links, references to high traffic sites, and unique ideas that are all their own.
A top writer gets paid $1 per word. But, if a business can’t afford that, then start at $0.15 per word and come to a common agreement. Negotiating is part of the process.
Ensure You Hire a Writer with a Blog of Similar Demographics
Blogging is a big part of a writer’s portfolio. When looking at their experience, it’s not only important that they have experience in your niche, but also that they attract the same type of audience. The demographics of the people visiting their articles should be similar to that of your business’ blog.
Choosing the right candidate for your next writing project depends on skill, quality, reach, and experience. All these elements create a win-win situation.
Working with new writers is not unheard of — if you see they have the potential to live up to your expectations. However, that goes back to what you’re willing to pay. Newer writers cost less, period.
Don’t give into temptation and overlook these seven simple actions to ensure you hire the right copywriter. You want the best you can afford and following this advice will ensure you do your due diligence.
What else have you found important in finding the right writer for your project?
Anjana Bhartia Malakar says
Great Post Rebecca. I completely agree that no matter how good a writer seems, it’s always best to run a plagiarism check. I’ve learned this the hard way. One question though. .15 cents to 1 Dollars. Isn’t that a HUGE margin. How do you suggest one judges
Rebecca Sutton says
Thanks for commenting. Yes it is a huge margin. It all comes down to how difficult the article is to write. The price should go up progessively as you need keyword research, sources attributed or linked, studies included, interviews done, etc. .15 cents is for an article I can write in under an hour with simple research on existing articles. It may still be original but it is based on popular articles in culmination. Lower than .15 cents is for a simple rewrite of an article.. Hope that helps!