When I first started freelancing in 2011 I was happy to get paid $50 to write a blog post.
Heck, I was happy to get paid anything back then!
I had just quit my job in corporate America and I did not have any regular clients. So any work was better than no work.
But you can’t survive on $50 blog posts. Even if it only takes you one hour to write it you have to remember you’re not actually making $50/hour. That’s because you still have a lot of non-billable work you have to do like invoicing, prospecting, submitting proposals, etc.
I’ve found that I spend about 1/3 of my time on billable work and 2/3 of my time on everything else. So if I want to make $50 for every hour that I’m actually working then I need to charge at least $150/hour for client work.
I wish I would have known this when I first started. I may have skipped the $50 blog post jobs altogether.
Today I don’t write many blog posts because I focus more on email sales funnels, landing pages and website copy. But when I do, I charge $400 per post.
That’s 8x more then what I charged in 2011.
So what’s the point?
Should you charge $400 per blog post if you’re just starting out? I wouldn’t.
You can’t charge whatever you want and expect it to work out. There is something to be said for the quality of your work and your experience.
There’s no way my 2011 blog posts were worth $400. $100 or $150 maybe. So I could have started there.
If you’re just starting out and you’re trying to figure out what to charge for blog posts here’s a few tips:
1. Track your Time: I use a free app called Toggl. Do this every time you write a blog post. Record your time for all the research, writing and editing you do. Then you’ll have a realistic idea of how much time it takes you to write a post.
2. Assess Your Ability: This one is hard. You may need to consult a friend, coach or mentor to give you honest feedback on your writing ability. You may think you write amazing blog posts that are worth $400 each. But in reality they may only be at the level of $100 posts. Or the opposite could be true. This is why it’s nice to have someone, like a coach, who can give you honest feedback.
3. Determine Your Target Hourly Income Goal: Do some simple math to figure out how much money you want to make a month and how many hours you’ll work each week for that. And remember, you will not be working on billable client work 100% of the time. So you must take that into consideration.
Remember, as you continue to improve as a writer and gain more experience you will be able to increase your rates. The goal is to charge what you’re worth. Not to little and not too much.