How much can you expect to pay an experienced copywriter or blog writer?

If you’ve been carrying out business online for any length of time, you might have found that the cost of web writing services varies a great deal. You have likely come across writers working for as little as $5 for a 1000 word article, while others want to charge you a few thousand for a 500 word sponsored blog post.

So what’s fair?

As someone who makes a living through writing, I am of the opinion that cheap labour is not worth your time.

The problem with very cheap writers is that the quality is often reflected in the price. Writers who charge a high price however, do so for many reasons; perhaps they’re trying to control workflow, or they are specialised, or have many years of experience that puts them ahead of newer writers. These writers might be working with large corporations, or highly specialised industries and are expected to drive results through their work.

Blogging is often overlooked as a skill, however most of the informational content ranking in Google (and the searches people make) comes from blog posts. Being an effective blogger requires more than just coming up with ideas and writing a fluffy article. It takes time and effort to understand who you are talking to, what they want and how you expect them to find you. You often have to adopt new writing styles depending on the client’s tone of voice requirements and spend a decent amount of time doing research and citing sources as a journalist would.

Copywriting and blogging are two unique skills, and while some people may think that writing a blog article is easy and should not cost more than $20 I would urge them to try to write several blog post a day. It is difficult to maintain high quality, meaningful work if you are constantly churning out content.

As a business, it is up to you to decide how much you are willing to pay for a blog writer. While the issue of what to charge is subjective and based on many factors including whether you are paying an individual or an agency to carry out the work—in my experience, anything less than $100 for a blog post (minimum 500 words) isn’t worth the time or the energy for an experienced writer. Most of the time, you will be expected to pay more than $100 for a blog post if you’re working with an experienced writer or journalist. This is because the time, effort and skill required all influence the quality of the writing.

Now, I am not saying that a decent writer won’t emerge from the woodwork one day and charge you under $100. Yes, it does happen. However, it’s important to bear in mind that while the piece they write will be good enough, it’s not going to be as good as it could have been if the writer was given more time or a bigger budget. For example, the extra time could have allowed them to interview a source and add some more valuable information to the piece making it say, 30% more interesting to readers.

Of course, if “good enough” is what you’re going for—that’s your call! But your competitors might be going for more than just good enough, which leaves you out in the sticks, so to speak.

Copywriting costs on the other hand can vary depending on the industry, the workload and the client—you might be looking at something well into the thousands.

A good copywriter has likely spent years developing their writing and learning what works and what doesn’t. A good blogger understands what people want to read and delivers it in a way that is both helpful and engaging.

At the end of the day, the investment into a great writer who understands how to communicate your message is an important one and it means that you can focus on working on and improving your business.