Online Authors: Brief Summary
Online authors can be defined as writers or content creators who produce work that is intended to be published on the internet. Examples of the kind of content that may be produced by an online author include web articles, blog posts, online journal entries, web page copy, product descriptions, e-books, whitepapers and even novels.
Sometimes known as online writers, they may focus on particular topics they are knowledgeable about, or write more generally, based on the requirements of their employer or any clients who approach them with proposals. Although online writing shares similarities with offline writing, there are some unique skills and practices involved too.
Online Authors: Detailed Summary
Online authors are responsible for writing content that will be published on the internet for other online users to consume and engage with. They may be employed by a website or publication to produce content, work on a freelance basis, source work through online writing platforms, such as Textbroker, where they are connected with clients seeking online content, or they could even opt to self-publish their own content on their own platforms.
Writers who specialise in creating online content may also have specific expertise. For example, an online sports writer is a writer who has expertise or knowledge of a particular sport and produces content on that topic, while an online political writer will have knowledge of politics and produce political content. Some online authors specialise more generally in online writing and are willing to research and write about a range of topics, based on client needs.
Online writing can take many forms, but some of the most common include articles, blog posts, white papers, e-books, research papers, online journal entries, web page copy, product descriptions and social media posts. The rise of audiobooks has also meant that a growing number of online authors also distribute content in audio format.
Additionally, the emergence of more traditional books being published in e-book format, as well as authors releasing their work as serialised web content, has meant some conventional authors can now also be classed as online authors too. A good example of this can be seen with the children’s story, The Ickabog, written by British author J.K. Rowling. Prior to publishing it in other formats, it was released for free in daily instalments on her website.
Although online writing takes many forms, there are certain conventions that are widespread, and many online authors will need to become familiar with these. For example, it is often considered good practice to provide links to sources used to create online content and quotations should also be referenced with a link to the original source. Many forms of online content are also typically written using short paragraphs, with subheadings, in order to make it easy to consume.
The rise of content marketing, where brands or organisations attempt to reach out to a target audience through the creation of useful content, has increased demand for talented online authors. Websites use content marketing to generate hits, increase conversions, improve visibility on search engines, establish expertise, promote products and services, and improve relationships with customers or potential business partners.
To produce high-quality content of this kind, online authors need to focus on creating original or unique content, which is genuinely useful to its target audience, or which offers them something valuable to take away.
Important Skills and Requirements
In order to find success as an online author, an individual will need to possess excellent written communication skills, which includes having an excellent understanding of spelling and grammar. In addition, a knowledge of the main style guides, such as the AP Stylebook, the Chicago Manual of Style and New Hart’s Rules, can be beneficial and research skills are important, because it may be necessary to write about unfamiliar topics, or to back up any arguments made.
Online authors may be required to write for different regions, and this could lead to a requirement to understand the main differences between, for instance, US English and British English in terms of spelling and word usage. It is also common for online authors to have some editing or proofreading responsibilities too.
With the popularity of online content marketing strategies, many online authors are now expected to have a basic understanding of HTML and content management systems, such as WordPress. On top of this, some degree of knowledge of search engine optimisation techniques and principles can also be valuable. This could include learning the importance of keywords, or learning how to create effective meta titles and meta descriptions for content.
There are no mandatory qualifications to work as an online author, but individual employers may give preference to candidates with degrees in relevant fields, such as English, journalism, history or creative writing. Additionally, some employers and content mills will require online authors to pass a writing test before offering work.
It is also important to understand that online content is subject to laws regarding published content. This means an online author will need to understand how to use citations and quotations properly, will need to avoid accusations of plagiarism, and will need to steer clear of publishing libellous content or hate speech.
Finding Online Authors With Textbroker
Textbroker is an online content platform, which allows clients to access a pool of talented online authors, while allowing those online authors to write content for money. The service can be used to find authors who specialise in a range of topics and who can write various forms of content, including articles, blog posts, product descriptions and SEO content.
The online authors who write for Textbroker are separated into different levels, according to the quality of their writing, and this quality level is decided not only by an initial writing test, but also through continually monitoring the quality of the content they produce. This helps to ensure their current level reflects their current ability.
Clients ordering content have the option of placing an OpenOrder at different quality levels, and this makes those orders available for any eligible online author to pick up and complete. Alternatively, DirectOrders can also be placed, with the client identifying a particular author they wish to use and sending them their order directly. Another option is to place orders as TeamOrders, where the order can be made available to a smaller pool of authors selected by the client. If you require author recommendations, please contact support – we are happy to assist you in any way.
The platform provides protections for clients and authors alike. Clients have the ability to request revisions and, if they are still unsatisfied with the quality of the content, they have the option to refuse the text. For authors, the service itself is completely free of charge, a range of writing resources are available, and payments can be requested every week.
Online authors are defined by the fact that they create content intended for publication and consumption on the internet. However, there is a wide range of different types of online authors, ranging from bloggers and journalists, through to scientific journal writers and novelists, which can make generalisations difficult.
Some online authors are employed, some work on a more freelance basis, and some self-publish their own content. Meanwhile, online authors can specialise in different fields. Nevertheless, the vast majority of online authors are united by the fact that they create original content, that is designed to have use or value for their target audience.