A career in freelance writing has undoubtedly many benefits, including the freedom to work from home and having a personalized schedule. But success in this career path is easier said than done as it requires a great deal of commitment and dedication from you. In addition, you need to have the drive to constantly be searching for better-paying gigs and excellent time management as you’ll be your boss.
Due to these unique dynamics, it might not be as straightforward to succeed as a content writer. But with enough devotion, you’re bound to succeed, and here are some helpful tips to observe in your journey to becoming a freelance writer in 2021 and beyond.
Learn Basic SEO Skills
If the content you’ll write will be used on the web, it’s a sound idea to set aside some time and familiarize yourself with basic search engine optimization (SEO) skills. This is crucial as you want your content to rank higher on search engines like Google, increasing the chances of it being read by your target audience. Some of the SEO skills you need to know include;
- Correct formatting
- Knowledge on how to use an anchor text
- Using headings and basic SEO principles
You should also constantly keep an eye out to learn of any updates with search engines. This will allow you to develop appropriate strategies on how to incorporate such changes into your writing correctly.
It’s said practice makes perfect and this is best proved when you decide to venture into freelance writing as this is the only way you can succeed in this field. Consistently practicing to refine your writing skills is essential even if English is your first language. This way, you’ll be able to better pass across your point of view to the reader. After all, there are freelance writers for who English isn’t their first language, yet they’re making a killing from writing gigs.
Therefore, you should set aside more time to try and work towards improving your writing skills. Through practice, you’ll learn how to get rid of filler words and adding sensory details. But as you polishing your skills, it’s also important you understand the difference between content writing and blogging, as this allows you to know how best to market your writing skills.
Learn Proper Time Management
As a freelance writer, you’ll often need to meet several deadlines. Therefore, you need to perfect your time management skills to ensure you always finish your projects on time. But proper time management often proves to be challenging when you’re just starting as a freelance writer. Therefore, the best thing to do is to have a routine schedule each day and set aside a couple of hours each day to concentrate on your writing projects.
Perfecting your time management skills is also crucial as you’ll need to balance the time spent looking to new writing jobs, researching, and writing content. Otherwise, you might spend more time doing a specific task and overlooking another, which hurts your freelance writing career.
Set Boundaries To Avoid Distractions
You should maintain complete focus when writing, and the best way to do this is by removing every distraction. The most common causes of distractions that waste time you would have been writing include browsing the internet. For you to keep such distractions at bay, it’s best to keep your phone away while working, as the allure to browse through social media might be too tempting.
It would be best if you also informed your family and friends about your work schedule. This is vital as a freelance writer, writing is your primary source of income, so you need to be completely focused when working. If you don’t set such boundaries, your friends and family might keep invading your space, hindering you from meeting your deadlines.
Have A Portfolio
As a freelance writer, you should always be on the hunt for new jobs. And the best way to showcase your expertise is by showing your prospective clients the quality of work that’s already been published. This gives them an idea of the quality of work which you can deliver.
Having a blog is also another great way of displaying how skilled a writer you’re to potential clients. And starting a blog doesn’t have to cost you money if you don’t have enough finances as there are free blog sites such as Medium and WordPress that you can use. You can write about the niche that best excites you on such blogs, and this is an excellent link to use in your resume.
Start A Habit of Reading
To better your writing skills, you need to read many blogs, magazines, and books. This is important as it’s through these reading habits that you get to better familiarize yourself with high-quality content written by other professional writers. As a result, you get to learn new vocabulary and different writing styles, which eventually helps you develop your distinct style of writing.
Find A Niche
When starting your career as a freelance writer, you should try and write as many niches as possible. But over time, you’ll get to know which niche is the most appealing to you and should then set aside more time to perfect your writing skills. At this point, you won’t be able to command greater pay as you’re still an inexperienced and general writer.
However, it would help if you chose a specific niche to specialize in as time passes by, as this means you can commit more time to refine your skills on that specific topic. This means you can learn a lot more skills and knowledge, hence demanding better pay from your clients. The most popular niches to consider are;
- Health and fitness
- Personal development
- Family and parenting
After picking a niche or two, you’ll be set aside more time refining your knowledge on the specific topic. It also enables you to find more clients.
A career in freelance writing is no doubt exciting, but to succeed in it needs adequate preparation. Discussed in this post are the effective tips you should follow if you’re serious about becoming a freelance writer. By fully implementing the above-mentioned tips, you’ll realize your dream of enjoying the flexibility of working as a writer.