How I Raised My Rates and Still Kept Clients by Ingrid Cruz

How I Raised My Rates and Still Kept Clients by Ingrid Cruz

Freelance writing is an industry rife with people who believe they must accept gigs that pay below-market rates in order to remain competitive. All writers have to take their experience into consideration when setting their rates, but undercharging does not pave the road to success.

When I started, like most others, I used bidding websites, or charged below-market rates. I also reached out to friends, and offered them low rates in order to gain experience. However, some of the work I did for them turned out to be more difficult than anticipated. To top it off, I wasn’t specializing in a niche. Instead, I was looking for just about any gig I could get my hands on. I thought being a jack-of-all-trades would benefit my career. Unfortunately, this goes against the conventional wisdom I learned the hard way: if you want to be a writer, you need to specialize.

Wanting to showcase my talent and professionalism to potential clients, I purchased my own website. I knew there were free websites I could use but I felt having my own website would help me better market myself.

After that, I focused primarily on product reviews, coverage of immigration issues, and health and wellness. After getting a few more credits to my name, I was no longer a new freelancer and I was able to negotiate higher rates based on bylines and additional experience. Plus, I acquired references from clients who had paid me what I wanted, and were able to prove my skills were worth their investment. I also saved time when I stopped applying to gigs that didn’t pay enough. And, as a bilingual writer, I was also able to charge additional fees whenever work needed to be translated as well.

Through increased experience, and focusing on a few specialties, I was also able to write faster, and spend more time finding high-paying writing work.


Ingrid Cruz is a full-time freelance writer. She enjoys traveling, reading, and a good cup of coffee. Her website is:



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