Today I am tackling the controversial topic of content mills. In truth, what I have discovered is that most writers either love them or hate them. There seems to be very few people caught in the middle of this debate. If you are in the former camp, I am sure the headline of this article started your blood boiling. However, before you start composing that impassioned email to let me know how misguided I am, you should know that I will be composing an article tomorrow entitled, “ 3 Reasons Writing for Content Mills Doesn’t Suck!” Nevertheless, today is about why writing for content mills is a waste of time which comes with very little reward.
In the interest of full disclosure, it should be known that I have signed up for 5 content mills. This article is essentially based upon my work so far with these companies, and other research I have conducted on the subject. The content mills I currently belong to are: iWriter, Textbroker, Clickworker, Zerys, and Zemandi. Each company came with a sign-up process which included writing tests and samples to “ensure my worth,” as it may. Having passed all these initiation rituals, I was free to start writing for the content mills and pave my way to full-time freelance writing and independent financial freedom. Forget 365-days…I will do it in 4! Well…not so much. What I did find however was that writing for content mills can actually be a complete waste of time in many ways.
Top 3 Reasons Why Writing For Content Mills Is A Waste Of Time:
- Lack of Quality Assignments: I do understand that I am new to the world of freelance writing and content mills, but I have found there to be a woeful lack of decent assignments. Maybe if I want to write an SEO keyword dense article designed around the subject of reducing breast size I will be fine. However, I really do not want to do that! Also, on a few of the content mills my writing assignment page was empty. I think I even saw some tumbleweed roll across my screen and heard a coyote howling in the background. This was even after doing a ‘superb” job on the various tests. Strike 1 for content mills.
- Measly Compensation: Once again, bear in mind that I am a beginning writer when it comes to writing for content mills. As such, that means any writing jobs I complete are compensated at the lowest pay grade. As an example, on one of the content mills, I am typically offered $2. 43 for a 500-word article. I am no mathematician, but I believe that is approximately half a cent per word! While it is true that this is certainly on the low side, writers can still typically expect to only earn around $3 per 500 word article with that amount climbing to around $25 as you gain experience and credibility. Even on the high side, this is not a pathway to riches! Another point to remember is the fact that working for such a low rate can also drive down wages for other writers. Strike 2!
- Impractical Time Deadlines: When I am writing I try very hard to create the best possible piece I can. This can be particularly difficult when I am given an hour or two in which to compose my masterpiece! However, with many content mills this is exactly what happens. Instead of spending time working on quality of writing, it becomes a battle against the clock designed primarily to pump out articles. It is undoubtedly a quantity over quality scenario. Strike 3…Yer out!
There are actually some other disadvantages to writing for content mills, such as damaging your reputation as a writer and the inability to add a byline to your work thus limiting the development of a solid portfolio. However, I believe the top 3 which were provided essentially encompass all the main deficiencies. Nevertheless, tomorrow we will take a look at some advantages as we investigate 3 Reasons why writing for Content Mills does not always suck!