One of the rules of freelance writing is to never give it away for free. But did you know that writing for free can actually be profitable? It just depends on how you look at it. Giving your writing away can actually make money in the long run.

The ways that you can give your writing away for free and make money are not big industry secrets. The thing is that they aren't called writing for free, but essentially, this is what people who do these things are doing.


The first thing you likely want to know is why? Why would anyone give their writing away for free? There three big reasons:

1. Reputation: Your business is nothing without a reputation and writing for free can help you build up your reputation to something very good. When people search for your name or your business name in the search engines, what do they find? You had better hope that it is all good because a) web surfers almost always click on something from the first page of search results and b) if there is something negative on the first page of search result they will almost always click on that first. If you want to build your reputation as a trustworthy, ethical, expert make sure that you are providing them with material that says exactly that.

2. Traffic: You can have the best website in the world with great samples and loads of testimonials saying how wonderful you are but guess what? If you are not getting traffic to that site, it is worthless. So, make sure that everything you write has a link back to your site.

3. Profit: Isn't that the ultimate goal? Of course it is. If you want to be profitable you need to put work into it.


Now that you know why you should write for free to make a profit you likely want to know where you can do this. There are many place where writing for free can help you but here are a few ideas to get you started:

  • Guest posting: Write blog posts for others' blogs – especially if they get a lot of traffic and have a well ranked blog.
  • Article directories: EzineArticles, GoArticles, and other article directories let you post short articles on their sites and you can leave a link to your site, to a sales page that offers a product, or to another site that you can benefit from (but no affiliate links).
  • Residual income sites: Bukisa, ListMy5, InfoBarrel, HubPages, Squidoo – there are many sites where you can write articles and place links back to your own pages and sites, plus you can earn from AdSense, Chickita, Amazon, and other affiliate programs.
  • Newsletters: Start your own newsletter or offer to write an article for someone else that already has their own subscribers.

The Benefits

As you write for free there are few guidelines. You can write on whatever topics you like, you can write whatever length of articles you like, and you can write in whatever style you like. While some sites are going to have guidelines they are usually fairly loose. If you feel like you are losing your love of writing, this might be the perfect way to gain it back. Write what you love, give it away, and watch the money come back to you over the long run.