A potential client is asking me to quote a per piece rate for a 1000 word SEO topic. According to him, it should look like natural writing to a search engine, but doesn't necessarily have to be great from a human perspective. My guess is that these types of articles can be completed in one straight shot, without research, and with only one revision. He seems willing to pay a fair rate for my work. Not a bottom-feeder looking for junk content. I don't have any more information about the subject material.

So, how many long does it take? Include descriptions of your experience producing this type of SEO content?

  • 5
    The answer is based entirely on your writing speed and level of perfectionism. There's no way for the community to judge that on your behalf. Dec 29, 2015 at 14:57
  • This question, or variations on it, gets asked every so often. Dec 29, 2015 at 18:55
  • Thanks for your comments. I searched SE before I asked. This question is about a specific type of writing (SEO) that wasn't covered in previous questions. Moreover, this isn't a simple WPM question. I'm asking for SEO writers to share qualitative information.
    – rolfedh
    Dec 30, 2015 at 2:23
  • Sorry, my last comment wasn't complete. I don't think this is a duplicate, but it is a category of question we get asked every so often. To anyone who wants to discuss this, I've opened up a thread on our meta site about the issue. Dec 30, 2015 at 3:23
  • This issue is one often faced by freelancers. While this site is the best place to ask about the writing end of the issue (which you've done), you might also find guidance at our Freelancing site, but it would be more about the business end of the transaction. Dec 30, 2015 at 3:27

2 Answers 2


From my experience as a reporter, editor, and technical writer, there is a wide range of time required to produce an article, depending on expertise and the need for research. Any good writer can bang out 1,000 words on a topic they are familiar with, such as gardening, a city they live in, a historical event they've studied, or an area of science they've worked in. But if the topics are completely outside their personal experience, then I'd say roughly 6-12 hours for research and writing per article.

How much you can charge for that depends on how much your time is worth, how urgent the client's need is, and how much competition (offering lower rates) there is.

For good, publishable content, freelance writers can get .50 to $1 per word and up. But I have a hard time believing any company will pay thousands of dollars for SEO filler.


A good possible place to start is this article at searchenginewatch.com where they discuss how much a corporation should reasonably spend for search engine optimization. The general timing there (if you do the math) seems to be somewhere between 7 hours on the low end and 16 hours on the high end.

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