Why New Freelance Writers Should Use Content Mills

Updated on: by Amy Kennedy

Begin a writing career online with content mills.Content mills have garnered a bad rap. Experienced freelancers bash them in forums and warn newbies away from them. But are content mills really that bad? No, they’re not, and if you haven’t ever written online, here are three reasons why you absolutely should write for one of these sites.

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1. Experience

When you first start looking for writing work online, you don’t have a clue how to do it. Even if you have a four year degree in journalism, you will soon learn that online writing isn’t exactly like the writing you learned in college. One of the easiest ways to gain experience is to write for a content mill. This is a site that basically pairs clients who want written content with writers who will write it. The pay is much lower than if you were to find clients on your own. But right now, you have no contacts and no idea how to find them. Start earning a part-time paycheck with a content mill and listen to all the feedback that the editors give you. They will help you learn to hone your new writing skills.

2. The Forums

The forum of any content mill is a great place to hang out in your spare time. The writers who contribute to these forums are talented and experienced in the world of online writing, and they have a lot of knowledge to impart to you. Each forum has its own set of rules, but some of them do allow mention of competing sites. This is where you can learn which sites are best and which ones aren’t worth your time. There are also threads that teach you how to find private clients and links to websites that will help you improve your writing. In short, these forums are your goldmine, or at least a stepping stone to finding your own gold.

3. A Paycheck

When you first start writing online, what you really crave is a paycheck. You want to be able to say that your writing skills have put money in your pocket. So even though you aren’t making the big bucks yet, the satisfaction of earning a paycheck, due completely to your fabulous writing skills, will empower and motivate you.

6 Tips to Maximize Your Earnings on Content Mills

Content mills can be a great source of income for freelance writers, providing you with a steady stream of work. However, it’s important to strategize effectively to increase your earnings from these platforms. Here are six tips that can help you maximize your income from content mills.

1. Specialize in a Niche

Finding a niche or a specialized subject matter can increase your value as a content creator. By specializing in a specific area, you can develop expertise that can make you more attractive to clients looking for specialized content. This expertise can often command higher pay rates. Research emerging or high-demand topics, and strive to become an expert in those areas. This will help you stand out among other generalist writers.

2. Prioritize Quality Over Quantity

Many writers make the mistake of taking on too many assignments at once, aiming to maximize earnings through volume. However, producing a larger quantity of mediocre content can harm your reputation and potentially decrease your job opportunities over time. Prioritizing quality and delivering excellent work will help you build a positive reputation, leading to more job offers and the opportunity to charge higher rates.

3. Improve Your Speed

While it’s important not to sacrifice quality for quantity, improving your writing speed can also help you maximize your earnings. The faster you can complete high-quality assignments, the more assignments you can take on. Practice your typing speed, learn to brainstorm effectively, create outlines before you start writing, and minimize distractions to increase your productivity.

4. Leverage SEO Knowledge

Many clients on content mills are looking for content that will help them rank higher in search engine results. If you understand search engine optimization (SEO) strategies, you can provide this value to your clients, and you’ll likely be able to charge higher rates. You could consider taking courses on SEO or reading up-to-date articles and blogs to keep your SEO knowledge fresh and relevant.

5. Establish Long-Term Relationships

Building long-term relationships with clients can provide a steady stream of work and higher pay over time. As you develop a history with a client, they’re likely to trust you with more significant projects and be willing to pay higher rates for your work. Always communicate effectively, meet deadlines, and strive to exceed expectations to foster these long-term relationships.

6. Continuously Learn and Adapt

Content writing is an ever-evolving field, and staying updated with industry trends, techniques, and tools can help you stay competitive. Consider investing time in learning new skills, like using different content management systems, understanding digital marketing, or mastering a new writing style. The more versatile you are as a writer, the more opportunities you have to earn money.

After writing for a content mill for a length of time, you will have gained valuable experience and insight into finding better paying clients. Put in your time and you will be rewarded. Disregard the naysayers who want you to market yourself and spend a lot of time and energy finding clients. First, gain experience at a content mill. Then, you will have the experience and knowledge to move forward.

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November 24, 2014 at 1:54 pm

This article is great! I started writing for content mills and received immediate feedback and weekly pay. It increased my confidence and now, if I find a need a few dollars between other paying gigs, I drop in and pick up a job or two.

A good site for the very beginner is hirewriter.com (which pays weekly through Paypal and is reliable in payments). Then move on to crowdcontent.com which requires a higher level of writing skill with higher pay (again, very reliable in payments). I did not sign up for other sites so I can’t recommend them.

Good luck!

Miranda Grimm

November 24, 2014 at 8:56 pm

Thanks for the advice and the recommendations of companies to try!!


November 26, 2014 at 9:40 pm

The site is hirewriters.com — I didn’t proof my work very well!

James Cochrane

December 27, 2014 at 6:46 am

Hey Miranda,

Before reading this article I would have never considered content mills simply because of the stigma associated with them. You have changed my outlook and thanks for that. What I think could be more helpful is if you included resources as to where to find those content mills and which you have experience with, etc. I know that your reader Kathleen included some which does help. Like anything else there will be good, bad, and probably really bad content mills and I’d love to know which ones to use and which ones to stay clear away.

Thanks for the insightful information.
Best Regards,

Miranda Grimm

December 28, 2014 at 5:07 pm

That is a good point James. Here is an older article, but we could sure use an updated one as these companies are always changing. Keep an eye out for an article listing content mills to get started with, in the meantime check this article out: http://www.wahadventures.com/2013/03/10-freelance-writing-jobs-for-beginners.html

You can also browse through all of our writing company reviews here: http://www.wahadventures.com/category/job-reviews/writing-jobs