Website Income

Cheap Article Writing That Doesn’t Suck – Is $2 Per Article Possible

Getting high quality articles written for a very low cost is a key strength for my online business. In this article and for the first time I share exactly how I get high quality articles created cheaply. Websites having good content has always been important and is only getting more important according to this Matt Cutts interview.

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The Typical Way of Getting Quality Articles

I am looking to build my authority site with 50-100 on site articles and one of the most popular options to get quality articles created is to use TextBrokers and get their 4 star articles for $20. That would be $2,000 worth of articles on the website and another $2,000 for off page content. Although I hope that investment would have a positive ROI I would prefer not to put that much money at risk if there is an alternative.

100 quality articles at TextBroker would cost $2,000!


The Typical Way of Getting Cheap Articles

I have tried several methods to get articles created including those recommended by many of the people in this field I respect including the guys at Tropical MBA who talk about using Filipino writers. However in my experience these articles have been of low quality and provide less value than I would like. The guys at TropicalMBA(1 of the guys at least) and AdSense flippers are located in the Phillipines and that may be why they have had better luck than me with Filipino writers.

  • Fiverr – 5 articles for 5 dollars
  • UPWork – Part time Phillipino writer working for $2/hr-$5/hr works out to around $3/article


Here is how I (USED TO) get a 500+ Word High Quality Article Written for $2

This strategy has never been shared before and I have had reservations about revealing this part of my process for getting articles written since I know it will likely be copied. But, I made a commitment with this site that I would be 100% transparent so in the name of that here is my step by step process for creating quality articles.

I use ODesk for almost all my hiring needs. The benefit of ODesk that I love is that you can easily assign a team manager to take care of hiring/firing/supervising tasks. I simply set up a process, teach a team manager it and then let them run with it while I monitor.

Over the last 5 years me and my team managers have paid for over 23,000 hours of work and worked with 370 contractors.

My ODesk Experience

My ODesk Experience

In ODesk  I have a team created called my “Content Creation” team and it is managed by one of my project managers.

The system works like this…


1.       Identify Articles to Be Created

I have a few different simple Google Document spreadsheets for my various projects with a typical list of…

  1. Website
  2. Title(target keyword)
  3. Type of content (Pillar 2000 word article or 500 word blog post)
  4. Link to eventual Google document of the article (for when the article is created)
  5. Link to published URL (either on my site or another page online)

This process could be improved if I used one master list but since I have both smaller niche sites and authority sites I haven’t created a system that works really well tying them all together.

For my authority website case study I have one main Google document I created in the Keyword Research post.

I also sometimes get lazy and just email my team manager saying 10 more pieces of content on site x with a few keyword suggestions and they get the content created. I try not to do this since it messes up my simple systems and tracking I have in place.


Article Tracking Template


2.       Post a Job on ODesk

The job on ODesk doesn’t have to be anything special. The key to hiring good writers is understanding what they are looking for and providing it. My ideal writer is looking for an opportunity to get 5* feedback and steady work. I am looking for someone who is…

  • A Native English Speaker (USA, Canada, Great Britain, Australia)
  • Has writing experience
  • College educated
  • Newer to ODesk and looking for experience/exposure
  • Returning to the workforce and hungry to prove themselves

These qualities typically reflect themselves in a stay at home mom returning to the workforce or recent college graduates who is looking to get experience.

Here is my article writing job posting I like to use…


—- Article Writer Post —

I have a quick 10 article writing job if you are interested in getting some 5* feedback on your ODesk profile and potential long term work.

I will provide you with the article titles and would like you to research them and then write 500 word articles

– Native English
– Interested in completing this job quickly for the fixed bid amount and receiving 5* feedback
– interested in potential longer term writing assignment after the successful completion of this job
– Bid at or below the $20 for 10 articles

—- Article Writer Post —


3.       Hire 2 Writers for Each Group of Keywords

No need to interview since there is very little you can learn to better inform your decision. By not interviewing you take on 2 risks…

  1. Writer is not serious and does not complete the work – However, I don’t believe interviewing would reduce this risk and the consequence of not getting your articles is minor since you are hiring 2 writers for each group of keywords.
  2. You receive of sub-par quality content – Again, this risk is minor since you have 2 writers working for each group of articles and if the content is decent(which it almost always is) but just doesn’t add enough value it can be used as an article at EzineArticles, Hubpages or my Private Blog Network.

Many people will disagree with me on this but hiring them right away without an interview saves me a lot of time!

My 2 Reasons for Hiring 2 Writers for Each Group of Keywords:

  • Timing – Some percentage (around 25%) of writers will not follow through on the contract so by having 2 writers I will have a high chance that articles will be ready for the site when I am ready for them.
  • Quality – Sometimes even when I hire my ideal candidate the quality of content is lower than I want on my main site. So by having 2 writers I have 2 articles to choose from on what to post.


4.       Send Them a Message with Instructions

Here are the instructions I send via ODesk as soon as I hire them, this email is nothing special but lays out what delieverables are expected and when they are expected. A great podcast if you are interested in running an efficient team is Manager Tools who teach the basic principle of project management is defining “who is doing what by when”.

One change I made to this template that improved the number of writers that completed their articles was asking for a small action right away “email me confirming you have received and understand these instructions”.


—- Email Template —-

Welcome to the team. I really look forward to working with you!

My name is _____ and I am the team lead here, please email at _______ to confirm you have received this email right away.

If you ever have any questions or concerns you can get in touch with Jon the owner at _______

Here are the 10 articles each article needs to be 500+ words and 100% unique…

Title 1

Title 2

Title 10

Following the general instructions provided at the link below (specifically section 4)

Please send all articles in individual .doc form to the emails above.

Hopefully you can complete all 10 in 1 week, 5* feedback and more work will follow.

If you have any questions please contact me.

Thanks and I look forward to speaking with you more.

_______ (Team Lead)

—- Email Template —-


5.       Receive Articles

Once the articles have been received they should be checked for the following…

  • PlagiarismFree checker
  • Quality – Review the article to see if it is good enough to go onto the website, again if it’s not it can be used at a Web 2.0 property or private blog network.

I then have my team leader copy each individual article into the Google document to be shared with me and other members on my team.

Copy all the articles in a Google document – One Google document for each article. Once you have copied the article share it with whoever is required. Typically the team lead who uploads the article shares it with me and for Micro Niche Sites my WordPress Development guy. For this site I will have a VA working directly with me so they will need to get access to everything.

Once the article has been put into a Google document and shared with the appropriate people it needs to have the URL placed in the main Authority Website Content Tracking Document.


6.       Publish Articles (more to come in future posts)

Once the articles required are available I will trigger the website builder to create the site or if this is ongoing content they would be aware and as soon as the Google document is available the post would be up.

It is very helpful on each Google document to leave comments on where / when the content was used so you don’t get mixed up on whether or not the articles were used.

Depending on the quality of the writer, me and my team manager will move them onto bigger assignments as required.

So that is it, six steps showing how I get cheap articles written that are of high quality!


Other Systems People Use to Get Content Created & The Importance of Quality Content…

About the Author Jon

I am a 36 year old husband, father of 3, engineer and a huge fan of developing systems to build useful and profitable websites. The reason I build online businesses is to provide financial independence for my family and yours AND so I can spend time outside skiing and biking with my family.
Jon Gillham, Online Entrepreneur

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