Are you looking to launch your freelance writing career on Fiverr? If you’re wondering what you should specialize in, here are 15 freelance writing jobs to consider. For each, we’ll tell you the skills you need, the key mistakes to avoid, how to show your skills when you’re new, and additional tips for success.
- Resume Writer
Writing resumes and cover letters can be a lucrative freelance gig. That’s because many people need a new resume or cover letter every few years. The US Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) says people hold an average of 12 jobs during their working life. And in countries with a high unemployment rate, people are always looking for new opportunities.
Resumes summarize the education, skills and career achievements of job seekers. Cover letters accompany resumes to highlight the attributes that are related to a particular job.
5 Essential Skillsets That Any Good Resume Writer Needs to Have
If you’re going to be a successful writer of resumes and cover letters, here are the key skills you’ll need:
- Knowledge of apps like Microsoft Word or Google Docs
- Understanding how to format and lay out resumes and cover letters correctly
- Excellent spelling and grammar
- The ability to write appealing copy and to sift the information job applicants give you to craft compelling opening statements or career summaries that make recruiters take notice
- Marketing skills
How Do You Show Your Resume and Cover Letter Writing Skills When You’re New?
If you’re just starting out as a resume and cover letter writer, here’s what you do:
- First, practice on your own resume
- Write resumes for family and friends
- Add these examples to your portfolio to help you win more resume writing and cover letter writing gigs
What are the Mistakes to Avoid as a Freelance Resume and Cover Letter Writer?
When writing resumes and cover letters, here are some mistakes to avoid:
- Don’t include every single job the applicant has had on the resume. Focus on the most recent jobs and the most relevant experience
- Don’t rehash the resume in the cover letter. Just pick out the most important points to help recruiters decide to read the resume
- Don’t lie. However, make the information you have look good
- Product Description Writer
By 2020, Statista estimates there will be more than 2 billion digital buyers worldwide. Every product they buy will need a product description. Product descriptions do exactly what the name suggests: describe a product to appeal to potential buyers.
According to NNGroup, 20% of people who fail to complete a transaction on a website, do so because they can’t understand the product description. With product descriptions having a direct impact on sales, product description writers are in high demand.
How do you become a product description writer? Read on to learn more.
6 Essential Skillsets That Any Good Product Description Writer Needs to Have
If you’re going to be a successful product description writer, here are some of the key skills you need:
- Translating technical product information into a brief description that makes sense to potential buyers
- Understanding the buyers’ needs and picking out the aspects of a product that will benefit the buyer
- Creative writing skills to make your product descriptions appealing
- Excellent spelling and grammar
- Search engine optimization, to help searchers find products online
- Research skills to flesh out your descriptions
How Do You Show Your Product Description Writing Skills When You’re New?
How can you show that you can write product descriptions when you’re new? Here are some tips:
- Offer to write product descriptions for friends and family members with small businesses
- Find products you like and write sample product descriptions for them
- Offer your services at a discounted rate to a non-profit with products to sell. You can gain experience and be charitable at the same time.
What are the Mistakes to Avoid as a Freelance Product Description Writer?
Here are some mistakes to avoid when writing product descriptions:
- Don’t just focus on features; benefits are what matter to buyers. They want to know what’s in it for them
- Avoid making product copy too long; many visitors will skim the content
- Related to that, put the key benefit or feature early in the description
- When writing copy for multiple products in the same range, avoid duplication. It’s essential to make each one unique so it stands out to customers and search engines
- Website Content Writer
As a freelance web content writer, you’ll have access to plenty of opportunities. According to Internet Live Stats, there are around 2 billion websites online right now, and the number increases every second.
All of those website need content, so it’s no surprise that the US BLS estimates that demand for writers is increasing by around 8% per year.
Website content is incredibly varied, ranging from copy written for a site’s home and about page, to copy for landing pages and blogs.
How do you become a freelance content writer? Here’s a summary of the key skills you need.
6 Essential Skillsets That Any Good Website Content Writer Needs to Have
Like many other freelance writing specialties, there are some core skills required for writing website content. These include:
- Creative writing skills to make your website content appealing
- Excellent spelling and grammar
- Knowing how to take technical subjects and pick out the main features and benefits that will attract readers
- Writing an appealing call to action to make website visitors do something as a result of reading the content
- Understanding how to promote a company while still being readable
- Search engine optimization (SEO) so people can find website content online
How Do You Show Your Website Content Writing Skills When You’re New?
While it may be a challenge to show off website content writing skills when you’re new to the profession, here are some things you can try:
- Make sure your own website content is stellar
- Volunteer to write website content for nonprofits and small businesses at a reduced rate so you gain some portfolio entries
- Do some “spec projects” similar to the way design students show off their design ideas
What are the Mistakes to Avoid as a Freelance Website Content Writer?
Here are some common mistakes content writers should avoid:
- Avoid writing large blocks of text. Instead, make web content scannable instead by including subheadings
- Don’t be overly promotional; people hate being sold to. Instead, highlight features and benefits in web copy
- Don’t make spelling or grammatical errors; it makes the work look unprofessional
- Don’t deliver work late; deadlines are sacred
- Technical Writer
If you’re looking for a freelance career with plenty of potential for growth, consider becoming a freelance technical writer.
According to the US BLS, demand for this skill is growing above average at 11% per year. With billions of websites online, and more every day, there’s always need for a skilled technical writer.
Technical writers can create anything from instruction manuals and how-to guides to scientific articles on complex topics. Here are some of the key skills you’ll need.
5 Essential Skillsets That Any Good Technical Writer Needs to Have
Here are some of the key skills you need for freelance technical writing.
- The ability to make complex topics simple to understand
- The ability to document processes in a step by step approach
- Expert knowledge of relevant industries, software or apps
- Excellent spelling and grammar
- Design skills for creating suitable screenshots and illustrations of technical concepts
How Do You Show Your Technical Writing Skills When You’re New?
If you’ve never done any technical writing before, here are a few ways to show your skills:
- Download a piece of software you’ve never used before and write a getting started guide
- Take a document or process that you think is complex and write a simple version
- Create a guide for an online or mobile app, including screenshots
What are the Key Technical Writing Mistakes to Avoid as a Freelancer?
If you’re going to succeed as a freelance technical writer, here are some key mistakes to avoid:
- Don’t use unnecessary jargon: the goal of technical writing is to be understandable
- When writing instruction manuals or how-to guides, don’t leave out any steps or readers will find the guide hard to follow
- Avoid using unclear images to illustrate key points
- Proofreader or Editor
With so many websites coming online, there’s a huge demand for web content, and it’s important for businesses to get it right. That’s why becoming a freelance proofreader or editor is a useful freelance career.
Some people get confused about the difference between editing and proofreading. Here’s the difference. Editors check for style, tone, flow, and more, and make sure content conveys the right message. Proofreaders focus more on ensuring there are no errors that can be avoided, like typos and spelling and grammar mistakes.
There is some overlap, though, as both revise content that’s going to be published.
5 Essential Skillsets That Any Good Proofreader and Editor Needs to Have
Here are the key skills you need for proofreading and editing:
- Proofreaders need eagle eyes so they can spot errors easily
- They must also have above average ability in spelling and grammar
- Editors need to understand the principles of good writing so they know when a piece of content flows
- Some editors will have qualifications in the language they are working in, such as a degree
- Both proofreaders and editors must have a meticulous approach
How Do You Show Your Proofreading and Editing Skills When You’re New?
What if you’re new to proofreading and editing? Here are some ways to show off your proofreading and editing skills:
- If you’re a proofreader, pick a piece of writing with grammatical errors, and improve it. Show the two versions side by side in your portfolio
- If you’re an editor, offer to edit web articles for a local small business or non-profit, on condition that you can show the improved version in your portfolio
- If you come across a piece of content you can improve, do it as a “spec” job and include it in your portfolio
What are the Mistakes to Avoid as a Freelance Proofreader or Editor?
Here are some of the key mistakes to avoid as a freelance proofreader or editor:
- Don’t miss common typos, spelling mistakes or grammatical errors. You need to catch them all to prove you can do the job
- If you’re proofreading, don’t make unnecessary changes to the text. The point is to focus on avoidable errors
- If you’re an editor, don’t deliver any work till you’re sure it makes sense and flows correctly
In an era when people can access content from anywhere in the world, businesses need translation services. That’s why becoming a freelance translator is a viable career option.
For example, did you know that only 20% of the world’s population speaks English, and only one quarter of those speak it as a native language? That’s a good reason to consider freelance translation as a career. And it’s likely why the US BLS shows that demand for translators and interpreters is growing well above average at 18% per year.
5 Essential Skillsets That Any Good Translator Needs to Have
Here are some of the key skills you need for successful freelance translation:
- Native fluency in the language you’re translating into
- Native or near native fluency in the language you’re translating from
- A good understanding of linguistic nuances and vernacular
- Attention to detail so you can ensure the translation is accurate
- Good spelling and grammar in both languages
How Do You Show Your Translation Skills When You’re New?
Even if you’re just starting out as a translator, it’s easy to show off your translation skills by:
- Picking a piece of writing in your niche and translating it
- Contributing to web translation projects
- Offering your translation services to a cause you believe in to get items for your translation portfolio
What are the Mistakes Freelance Translators Should Avoid?
Here are some mistakes to avoid as a freelance translator:
- Don’t take jobs in specialist niches (such as medical or legal) unless you have the competency. Translation mistakes in specialist arenas could cost lives or money
- Avoid over-reliance on machine translation. Machines don’t pick up the nuances that humans do, so your translation will suffer
- Pay attention to words with accents where meanings can change if they’re omitted
- Don’t send your work off without proofreading it thoroughly. You’ll want to make sure spelling and grammar are accurate
- Creative Writer
Creative writing is all about storytelling, but these days, creative writers don’t just write novels. Creative writing skills are in great demand in business, because companies want to reach their target audience with compelling stories.
Creative writing is also useful within the media and entertainment industry which is expected to double in size between 2016 and 2020. Demand for writers and authors is growing at 8% per year, says the US BLS.
5 Essential Skillsets That Any Good Creative Writer Needs to Have
Here are some of the key skills you need for successful creative writing:
- A vivid imagination to come up with innovative ideas
- Knowledge of writing techniques like using similes and metaphors and choosing the right words for every occasion
- Excellent spelling and grammar, and a great vocabulary
- Knowledge of key types of marketing and advertising copy
- The ability to write books, ebooks, scripts, screenplays, poems, and more
How Do You Show Your Creative Writing Skills When You’re New?
To show your creative writing skills when you’re new to writing professionally, try these tips:
- Dust off those old stories and essays you did for your writing course or degree program. Some of those will make great portfolio pieces
- Do some spec work. Look at how a piece of online content could be improved, do it, and add it to your portfolio
- Enter creative writing or blogging competitions to get portfolio pieces fast
What are the Mistakes to Avoid as a Freelance Creative Writer?
Here are some of the key mistakes to avoid as a freelance creative writer:
- Don’t try to make a piece of writing target everyone; know the audience you’re writing for and make it specific
- Make sure the start of any piece of creative writing is punchy. You don’t want to lose your audience too early
- Avoid unnecessary repetition; that makes writing dull for readers
- Give readers a payoff with a satisfying conclusion
- Spelling and grammar errors make writing look unprofessional; avoid them
- Research Summary Writer
These days, research is a key part of the most popular content. According to data from Mantis Research and Buzzsumo, 89% of companies who use original research find it successful. In this context, research includes reports, guides, benchmarks and data analysis used to build awareness and generate leads.
But there’s another kind of research, too. Research is also an essential part of technical and scientific papers. In both cases, you’ll want to create a summary outlining key points to be covered. Summaries give readers an overview of the content and get them interested in reading it.
Ready to find out more about this writing specialty? Read on
5 Essential Skillsets That Any Good Research Summary Writer Needs to Have
Here are some of the key skills and knowledge needed for writing research and summaries:
- For marketing purposes, being able to extract interesting key points to create compelling research reports
- Facility with word processing software and apps like Microsoft Word and Google Docs
- For technical and academic papers, understanding citation systems like MLA and Harvard
- Understanding how to structure research papers and write bibliographies
- Great spelling and grammar
How Do You Show Your Research & Summaries Writing Skills When You’re New?
Here are some ways to show that you know how to write a summary or research report when you’re new:
- Download an online report and see if you can write a better summary than the one published. Use this as a “spec” example
- Write a blog post summarizing that same research
- Use any academic research papers you’ve already written as examples of your work
- Take short extracts from academic papers and rewrite them using different academic referencing systems (note that these are for use as examples only; avoid violating copyright)
What are the Mistakes to Avoid as a Research Summary Writing Freelancer?
Here are some of the key mistakes to avoid as a research and summaries writer:
- Don’t forget your reader; make your research writing readable
- Don’t use jargon for the sake of it
- When writing research summaries, don’t leave out key points. People will use those to decide if it’s worth reading
- Don’t use the wrong referencing system. Especially for academic writing, this can result in work being rejected
- Articles & Blog Post Writer
According to the US BLS, demand for writers is growing at about 8% per year. As we’ve seen, if you’re a technical writer, there’s even more growth, at 11% per year. And if you consider how many websites come online every minute, you know that demand for content isn’t going away.
Articles and blog posts are a key part of that content. Articles and blog posts help businesses attract and retain the attention of website visitors, and nurture them into becoming customers, so this type of writing is a core skill in the 21st century.
What’s the difference between an article and a blog post? These days, it’s not so clear. Articles used to be longer, research-based pieces, which sometimes resulted from interviews. Blog posts were shorter, less objective pieces. But today, many sites publish long-form blog posts, with just as much attention to detail as an article.
The bottom line: creating trustworthy content, so let’s look at the skills you need to do that.
5 Essential Skillsets That Any Good Blog Writer Needs to Have
Here are some of the key skills you need to write articles and blog posts:
- Knowing how to promote businesses with readable content
- The ability to research quickly using search engines and other sources
- Creative writing skills to bring content to life
- Understanding search engine optimization (SEO) to help content get found
- Excellent spelling and grammar
How Do You Show Your Article & Blog Writing Skills When You’re New?
When you’re new to writing articles and blog posts, here are some ways to show off your skills:
- Write articles or blog posts like the ones you want to write for clients and publish them on your own blog
- Contribute articles and blog posts as guest posts
- Blog on your LinkedIn profile
- Offer to do “spec” work for nonprofits or small businesses for a reduced rate in exchange for recommendations and reviews
What are the Mistakes to Avoid as a Freelance Article Writer or Freelance Blogger?
If you’re working as a freelance blogger or freelance article writer, here are some mistakes to avoid:
- Don’t quote too liberally from research sources; you might be accused of plagiarism. Instead, summarize research from multiple sources and put your own spin on it
- Don’t write large blocks of text; include subheads to make it scannable
- Don’t forget about SEO; without it people won’t find the content
- Avoid making spelling and grammatical errors. That just looks unprofessional
- Sales Copywriter
These days, every business is online, and all businesses need to sell products and services to their customers. That’s just one reason why becoming a sales copywriter makes sense for freelancers.
Promotional writing is in high demand, and those who do it well help companies earn hundreds of thousands – or even millions – of dollars in revenue. Here’s what you need to know about this freelance career.
4 Essential Skillsets That Any Good Sales Copywriter Needs to Have
Here are some of the key skills you’ll need for successful sales copywriting:
- An ability to tap into emotions with your writing because this is what will get people interested in your copy
- Understanding persuasive writing – sales copy is all about persuading readers to take the next step
- Excellent spelling and grammar – as we saw earlier, a misplaced comma can cost millions – and that’s not hype
- Excellent research skills to identify the best way to reach your audience
How Do You Show Your Sales Copywriting Skills When You’re New?
Here are some ways to show your sales copywriting skills when you’re new to the business:
- Sell yourself – write a sales promo for your services. As a bonus, if you’re successful, you’ll get copywriting work
- Try a spec project, writing a sales letter for a product you love
- Challenge yourself to write a sales letter for a “boring” niche then put that copy on your portfolio page
What are the Mistakes to Avoid as a Freelance Sales Copywriter?
Here are some of the key mistakes to avoid as a freelance sales copywriter:
- Don’t get bogged down in talking only about features; be sure to highlight benefits to the readers
- Don’t stick to a particular word count; write as much or as little as you need to reach your audience
- Avoid hype; your audience will spot it and it will send them away fast
- Press Release Writer
Press release writers are public relations specialists who help companies create media releases to share their news and distribute those releases in the right places. With so much competition online, it’s a skill that’s often in demand. Press release writers also draft releases for publication on companies’ own sites.
4 Essential Skillsets That Any Good Press Release Writer Needs to Have
Here are some of the key skills you need for writing press releases:
- An overall understanding of what makes news
- Knowledge of the 6 Ws – who, where, what, why, when and how – as these are the key elements of a news story
- Excellent writing, spelling and grammatical skills
- Understanding on online press release distribution
How Do You Show Your Press Release Writing Skills When You’re New?
If you’re new to press release writing, here are some ways to show off your skills:
- Write a press release to promote your own business
- Help a local nonprofit with press release writing and add the examples to your portfolio
- Create a sample press release for a product or service you like
- Check out published press releases and do improved versions as spec projects
What are the Mistakes to Avoid as a Freelance Press Release Writer?
Here are some key errors to avoid as a freelance press release writer:
- Don’t make your press release too long – most fit on one page and are less than 400 words long
- Don’t forget to include quotes from company sources to bring the press release to life
- Don’t forget company contact details for those who want to follow up on the press release
Becoming a transcriptionist is a great choice for a freelance career. Like other freelance gigs, it lets you work in your own time and is hugely flexible. You can also work in several areas: the medical, legal, or business field – or just general transcription.
Transcription means converting an audio file into text. With podcasting and video becoming more popular, there’s even more need for a reliable transcription service. Let’s look at some of the key skills needed to do freelance transcription.
5 Essential Skillsets That Any Good Transcriptionist Needs to Have
Here are some of the key skills required for successful transcription:
- Excellent listening ability
- Fast, accurate typing
- The ability to multitask so you can listen and type at the same time
- A good command of language and key terms for your type of transcription to help you to understand what you’re hearing
- Facility with word processing apps like Microsoft Word and Google Docs
How Do You Show Your Transcription Skills When You’re New?
Here are some ways to show your transcription skills when you’re new:
- Pick an audio file online that doesn’t have a transcription and transcribe it
- Offer that transcription to the copyright owner of the audio file in exchange for a link to your transcription gig on Fiverr
- If you run a podcast, do your own transcription to serve as examples of your work
What are the Mistakes to Avoid as a Freelance Transcriptionist?
Here are some of the key mistakes to avoid as a freelance transcriptionist:
- Mistyping words because you didn’t hear them properly
- Inconsistent grammar and spelling
- Not flagging inconsistencies in the text for the client
- Failure to understand how transcriptions must be formatted
- Legal Writer
If you have an interest or background in legal studies, then consider becoming a freelance legal writer. Legal writers create a variety of content, from contracts and legal briefs, to articles and blog posts about legal issues.
Here are some more things to know about becoming a freelance legal writer.
5 Essential Skillsets That Any Good Legal Writer Needs to Have
If you’re going to be a freelance legal writer, here are some of the key skills you need:
- Excellent research skills, to find the legal citations, pleadings and white papers to support a legal argument
- Understanding of legal terminology
- Knowledge of applicable law within relevant jurisdictions
- Attention to detail, as a comma out of place can be costly
- The ability to make complex information understandable
How Do You Show Your Legal Writing Skills When You’re New?
If you’re just getting into legal writing, here are some things you can do to show your legal writing skills:
- Check out the hundreds of websites that teach you about legal writing to learn more about the business
- Research a case that interests you and do a sample legal document
- Write a blog post about that same case and offer it to a legal blog
What are the Mistakes to Avoid as a Freelance Legal Writer?
Ready to get started with freelance legal writing? Here are some key mistakes to avoid:
- Don’t get caught up in convoluted language. Get to the point and make it understandable
- Keep your law knowledge current – avoid using outdated or superseded legal arguments to support a case
- Don’t neglect proofreading. Mistakes could be costly
- Email Copywriter
One skill that there’s a lot of demand for is email copywriting. This is writing content for emails that companies use to connect with, nurture and market to their audience. Like other writing professions, the demand for this type of writing has grown with the increase in online business.
Here’s what you need to consider as a freelance email copywriter.
5 Essential Skillsets That Any Good Email Copywriter Needs to Have
When writing email copy, here are some of the key skills you need:
- Knowledge of persuasive writing to encourage email subscribers to act on the content of your email
- The ability to write appealing email subject lines and headlines to get emails opened and read
- Excellent writing skills overall, and great spelling and grammar
- The ability to write calls to action that get people to act
- Great research skills
How Do You Show Your Email Copywriting Skills When You’re New?
Here are some ways to show your email copywriting skills when you’re new to the business:
- Do a spec project where you improve an email series you’ve received. You can even share it with the company; you never know – they might hire you
- Work out how you would promote a product or service you love by email and share your concepts on your portfolio
- Offer to help a non-profit with email marketing and share those samples on your portfolio
What are the Mistakes to Avoid as a Freelance Email Copywriter?
Here are some key email copywriting mistakes to avoid:
- Don’t ignore the audience; knowing who you’re writing for is key
- Don’t forget to target your copy and change it for different segments
- Don’t forget to proofread; errors make you look unprofessional
- Business Naming & Slogan Writer
If you enjoy a creative challenge, think about being a business names and slogans writer.
Business name writers help companies name businesses and products. Slogan writers come up with the phrases that help promote products and services. Get it right and you can help businesses make millions.
Let’s take at the key skills you need for creating business names and writing slogans.
5 Essential Skillsets That Any Good Slogan Writer Needs to Have
Here are some of the key skills needed to create business names and write slogans:
- Creativity, to keep coming up with new ideas
- Knowledge of branding
- Research skills, to ensure your idea hasn’t been used before
- Great writing skills to help you evoke emotion in people who see your slogan
- Attention to detail to make sure your business name and slogan match your company
How Do You Show Your Business Name Creation & Slogan Writing Skills When You’re New?
Here are some tips on showing that you can write slogans and generate business names:
- Do some sample projects and show how you’d rebrand a popular product or service
- Find a new product and offer to come up with slogans or taglines
- Help a nonprofit rebrand
What are the Mistakes to Avoid as a Freelance Business Name & Slogans Writer?
Here are some of the key mistakes to avoid when generating business names and writing slogans:
- Don’t make slogans long; they work best when they are short and catchy
- Avoid creating a business name that’s too similar to an existing business. This could cause confusion
- Don’t make spelling mistakes in a business name or slogan unless you have a special reason for an alternative spelling
That’s it! Now you know all the freelance writing careers you can do on Fiverr, and how to position yourself for success. Now it’s over to you – head over to the Writing and Translation category and create your first gig!