As a Content Writing freelancer you have probably struggled to determine how much you should charge for your content writing services.

The competition seems to increase and the rates seem to be going down to ridiculous levels.

E.g see some of the job requests on the Content Writers Group on Fb are offering 10 ppw or 10 paisa per word – That essentially translates to Rs 50 for a 500 word article.

Here’s one way to to determine how much you should be charging for content writing especially if you work as a freelancer.

Note: This model is applicable to those who work full time in content writing as a freelance and not part timers ( i.e. someone who is a student or has a job elsewhere and does content writing on the side to make some extra cash )

I have built an excel sheet calculator which will help you calculate how much you should be charging per-word for content writing ( You can download the calculator at the end of the article )

I conducted a short poll here on the Content Writers Fb Group – Most people take about 2 hours to write a 500 word article so I have gone with that assumption.

If you a freelancer who spends half their time on looking for work, and the other half on content writing, and you expect to earn an annual income of Rs 3 lakhs or Rs 25,000 per month, then you need to charge atleast Rs 1.2 per word.

Take a look at the image below for the calculations – Assumptions are listed below the image.

freelancer content writing rates

Let’s compare a content writing freelancer with someone who has a full time job earning Rs 3 lakhs per annum. Here’s what the numbers will look like.

  • 8 hours a day worked x 5 days a week = 40 hours worked per week.
  • 50 weeks worked per year = Total of 2000 hours available for work.
  • 2 weeks of vacation time off.
  • 1000 hours or 50% of your time is spent looking for work ( posting on Facebook, calling potential clients etc )
  • 1000 hours or the balance 50% of time available for actual content writing.

Now, if you take 2 hours to write a 500 word article, then in a year, you can write a maximum of 500 articles.

Your hourly rate = Total Earning Target ( Rs 3 lakh ) / Total Hours worked ( 1000 hours ) = Rs 300 per hour.

So if it costs you 2 hours ( or Rs 600 ) to write a 500 word article, then you need to charge the client Rs 1.2 per word ( Rs 600 / 500 words ) which will give you an average revenue of Rs 600 pe article.

IF you are able to do 500 such articles, you will make ( 500 x 600 ) = Rs 300,000 per year.

Now, think of how much you will earn if you charge 10 paise per word – Will you be able to survive on that kind of earnings.


As a content writing freelancer, once your expertise grows, you should up your game and charge more. That’s because if you write a great piece of content, that is SEO optimised and relevant to the clients business, it will show up faster in Google’s search revenues and continue to drive traffic and revenue for your client.

As a client, you should remember this adage, “If you pay peanuts, you get monkeys” – Content is a great differentiator and if are able to find a content writer who understands your business and delivers the appropriate content, consider paying them fair market rates with work on a regular basis.

It will be a win-win for both parties concerned.


Note: I have used Rs 3 lakhs as an example and am not suggesting what the salary or income for a content writing freelancer should or should not be. Instead of Rs 3 lakhs, feel free to aim for Rs 30 lakhs and charge Rs 12 per word – There are people who command those kinds rates and more.

Click here to Download the Per Word Rate Calculator to Determine Your Own Rate.

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