iWriter Review: Is it worth it?
Is iWriter worth it?
This is a question commonly asked among many writers searching for high-paying, steady work online.
This website is similar to other iWriter alternatives previously covered here on Writer Town, including TextBroker and Demand Media Studios. It is a place where both clients and writers meet and work with each other. Clients put up an article and available writers claim it and write it. If all goes well, the client accepts it and the writer gets paid.
I have always been a fan of this straight-to-the-point structure, and I have always found little to no satisfaction in bidding to get an article or a project awarded, as is the case with sites like Freelancer.com.
In any case, let’s look at iWriter’s positive and negative sides to help you decide whether it is a place wroth visiting.
Overview and Structure
As a writer, you begin with a basic level and have to work your way up to become a Premium and/or an Elite writer. The money you potentially earn is directly tied to your current level, which gives you more incentive to work harder by completing high-quality articles.
There seems to be a decent selection of articles available at any given time. These are separated between Basic, Premium and Elite levels, and you will immediately notice that the latter two levels offer much more money than the former. Continue reading for more details on this later on…
Writers have the ability to be featured on a “Top Contributors” type leader board which displays the most prolific and successful ones. This definitely works in your favor, as clients can potentially contact and work directly with you if they acknowledge how good of a contributor you are. Working with a client directly often leads to higher earnings.
While on the subject of clients, iWriter gives writers the chance to rate/review each client after your work with him is completed. This rating system helps other writers in deciding whether to work with such client or not. It provides a fair idea about a client’s approval/rejection ratio, which in turn could help writers avoid a bad apple.
One of the best things about iWriter is the payment flexibility available. Although they only process payments through PayPal at this time, writers can choose to be paid on a weekly, bi-weekly, or monthly basis. If you take the monthly route, you can receive your money either on the 5th or the 25th of each month.
I have yet to come across a platform that allows you to choose between so many payment dates, so this reason alone makes iWriter stand out from the crowd in this regard.
Additionally, a client may optionally choose to tip you at his own discretion, although it’s been reported this doesn’t happen very often. It’s probably due to iWriter’s nature, having a reputation of a “cheap” place to write.
Lastly, it is worth noting that iWriter pays 81% of the article price, while the rest goes to PayPal transaction fees, CopyScape plagiarism checks and (I suppose) the iWriter staff.
Earlier in the article I briefly mentioned a Premium and Elite status, which pays more per article once your writer account reaches such level.
Unfortunately, writers have to complete a whopping 30 articles with an average rating of four stars or greater to get there.
If you’re a fast and enthusiastic writer, perhaps you can reach that article count fairly quickly. Nevertheless, it doesn’t change the fact that you will be working a lot for an incredibly low compensation.
The average article pays a measly $2.43 for 500 words to the writer at the most basic level. If you are willing to tolerate such a low amount, then go right ahead and get to work, by all means.
However, there is a way to skip that initial burden, for a price. For an astounding fee of $147, iWriter gives you the choice of writing three trial articles (based on keywords that the staff chooses) and submitting them for review. The staff then gives those articles a rating, and also looks into your existing rating from all the previous articles you have written, if any.
If you pass, then you can happily move onto one of the higher levels without having to slave yourself away. While this is a decent option for those who wish to skip the initial hard labor, I can’t help but feel that this price point is just a tad too high.
IWriter’s reasoning is that “they need to pay their staff” to proofread and rate your article. However, I have seen other websites where you have to submit a sample chosen by them (during the initial application process) and the price is always zero.
I’m all for the staff getting paid, obviously. I am just not fully convinced that this pricing option is entirely fair. My best guess? This price is in place primarily to prevent just anyone from taking this route, which could potentially allow bad writers to infiltrate into the higher levels (by having those samples outsourced, and so on.)
So, is iWriter worth it?
No, iWriter is not worth your time and effort. Consider using this website only if you desperately need to make a few bucks and you have nowhere else to turn. Reaching a higher level will take some serious work, and you may find yourself burned out before you get there.
In all honesty, you should spend your time perfecting your portfolio and eventually reaching out to real clients; that is, people who actually appreciate your time and skills a lot more than the average Joe on iWriter.