The Best Blog Content Writing Services for 2021 (CASE STUDY Comparing 27 Content Sources)

Sack of magazine articles

UPDATED July 6, 2021: My fleet of content sources changes periodically.  This is updated to reflect recent changes and a recent massive content source case study.

Welcome to the best content services case study I’ve ever conducted. It was high time I ran this case study.  It’s been on the backburner for a long time.

I’ve used a good number of content providers over the years but not all of them.

My main business is content publishing. I have a growing portfolio of content sites (monetized with display ads).

I order a lot of content.

I typically publish decent content. I’m always on the hunt for the best content without spending way too much.

I also field many questions from readers about asking what is the best content provider.

I usually suggest the service I’m using at the time.  How could I not?

Regretfully twice I’ve suggested services that dropped the ball when dozens or hundreds of readers signed up and ordered all at once.

I don’t want that to happen again.

So I decided to go about the “what’s the best content provider?” question differently.

I set up and paid for the following case study where you be the judge.  After all, whether content is good or not is to some degree subjective, especially when cost is a factor (and cost is a factor in this business).

How I set up the case study

I wanted to compare as many content providers as I could find.  You’ll see below the list is long.

I needed to compare apples to apples.  Here were the case study parameters:

I ordered the exact same article topic with the exact same instructions from all of the following 30+ content providers.

The total amount I invested in this case study was $2,200 on articles from 27 services.

I stipulated a 1,000-word count range for each order.

Price per word was not the same. Price varied by content service, although as you’ll see, most are within a fairly similar range. Where there were pricing options, I went with something in the $.05 to $.06 per word range ($50 to $60 per 1,000 words).  In most cases this was the second-highest cost option.  For a few services, I ordered from two price points.

Eliminated the Fat Stacks effect.  It’s been mentioned that due to my publishing Fat Stacks and/or the fact I order quite a bit of content that when I order I get better treatment.  It’s possible. I wanted to eliminate this from the study.  Accordingly, I did not order the content.  I hired someone to order every article using his email and to not mention anything about Fat Stacks.  In other words, all orders were anonymous.

The Case Study Article Topic & Instructions

As mentioned above, I ordered the same topic with the same instructions from every service.

The topic: What are Handshake Alternatives?

Word count: 1,000 words.

My order instructions: You can read my article order instructions in my course bundle.

The Results

The person who ordered up all the content and dealt with all the services made some brief notes about each service.  I include his notes below for each service.

Please note that links to some of the services are affiliate links.  I did not list them giving the affiliate links preference.

Where are the delivered articles?

If you’d like to read and compare all of the articles delivered by each service, you can do so in my bundle of courses.  You can read my favorite delivered article here.  My favorite was written by PassionPosts.

My TOP 3 Content Services (plus my favorite resource for hiring freelance writers directly)

  1. Content Development Pros
  2. Content Development Pros

    Recently (Sept. 2021) I started a new project with Content Development Pros. They provided me the best low-cost per word quote for a huge content experiment. The content is decent at very low rates and they can produce a lot of content quickly once up and running. I suggest talking to them about your needs for a custom quote if you give them a try.

    Order through the button below to save 15% on your order.

    Save 15% on Content
  3. WriterAccess
  4. WriterAccess

    I've ordered OVER 1,000 articles from Writer Access. They aren't the cheapest (nor the most expensive). They get content out quickly and it's good; very good (assuming you pony up for higher-level content). I usually pay $.04 to $.10 per word.

    They can cover pretty much any topic. Their customer support is good as well. Recently I had a problem where for some reason Textbroker authors refused to do a very important and lengthy article. I had submitted it 3 times, authors picked it up, held on to it, then let the deadline lapse. This wasted 2 weeks. I then submitted the same article with exact same instructions to WriterAccess and it was done in 5 days (and done very, very well).

    GET $50 OF FREE CONTENT WriterAccess Review
  5. Passion Posts
  6. Passion Posts

    Use coupon BWMZ0ZXDWK at checkout to save 10% on your order.

    I discovered Passion Posts doing this case study. My favorite returned article was by this service. Passion Posts assigns article topics to in-house experts and writers with actual experience on the topic. I could tell immediately with the article they returned to me.

    I've now spoken with the founder who is a great guy and is able to accommodate my workflow. He's also offering reduced per word rates for bulk orders. I've now ordered over 300,000 words of content from them. The quality is exceptional. However, the turnaround time is fairly long so please be patient when you order from them.

    Use coupon BWMZ0ZXDWK at checkout to save 10% on your order.

    Visit Passion Posts My Passion Posts Review
  7. Problogger Job Board - Great Source for Hiring Writers Directly
  8. Problogger Job Board - Great Source for Hiring Writers Directly

    In 2019 I started hiring "in-house" writers which means I hired them directly. There's no middle-service such as a writing agency or service.

    Since then, I've hired 5 writers, most of whom I hired at the very awesome Problogger Job Board. Of all the freelance writing hiring platforms, the Problogger Jobs is by far the best. Every time I posted an ad, I received over 60 applications, many of which were excellent. The only negative aspect of this entire process was deciding who to hire because I received so many excellent applicants. If you have the budget to hire and employ a writer directly, this can be a great content option.

    Visit ProBlogger Job Board
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This case study helped me out in a couple of ways.  First, it helped cement my appreciation for WriterAccess. While WA’s article was not my favorite, it was in the top 3 (the $.06 per word version).

Second, I discovered a new content service that generated an outstanding article for a very reasonable price.  That service is PassionPosts.  The 1,000 word article cost $55.  I will be working with PassionPosts going forward.  Please note that PassionPosts has a limited number of writers so turnaround time could be longer, especially for large orders.  They’re a newer service in the space and are still ramping up.

Third, for $27 TextBroker delivered a solid article.  I use Textbroker here and there for very simple content.  The cost is low. The platform offers plenty of great features.  While I do send quite a bit back for revisions, when articles are good, they’re quite good (for the money).

A. Content Sources I’ve Used Extensively

This section lists out many different writing agencies I’ve used over the years.  I don’t use all of the following.  If you want to know which ones I use currently, check out the section above where I list my current content sources.

The following list is long in case you’re looking for something not set out above.

The first set are content sources I’ve used extensively.  I set them out first because I know them well.  After that I set out content sources I’ve only used in the case study.  The last section includes a mix of alternative content sources I’ve used in the past and that can still be a viable option.

WriterAccess.com

Writer Access Orders

WriterAccess.com (get a $50 credit) is a writing agency.  They have a large pool of content writers serving thousands of clients.

Like many article writing agencies, they offer various article qualities from 2 to 6 stars.  The cost is based per word.

Cost: $40 and $60 per 1,000 word articles. You can spend less or more but I tend to order mostly $.04 and $.06 per word content.

WriterAccess.com Pros

  • Their 5 and 6 star writers will generate a very well written article.  So good that it’s the only article writing service I’ve used for my law niche websites which requires carefully researched content.  If you need well-researched and well written quality content and you’re prepared to pay a bit of a premium, WriterAccess.com is a good option.WriterAccess writers are truly talented.  They can inject character and humor if you ask for it.  They can be technical and professional.  Frankly I’m impressed with the work they do.
  • Able to provide huge volumes of articles quickly.
  • Able to create order templates to for fast recurring orders. I often have similar formats and parameters within a particular niche or for a particular website.
  • Native English writers.
  • Their writers at the 4 to 6 star levels (I’ve never used 3 stars or lower) follow directions very well.
  • Very easy writer interface.
  • Nice search engine optimization control:  You can specify keywords to cover and also specify exactly how many times those words show up in the content.  This makes it easy to control for over-optimization which can hurt your website rank.
  • Live chat so you can get help really fast.

Cons

  • Will not upload and format articles in the backend of your website.  FYI, unless otherwise arranged (i.e. pay for it with large orders, writing agencies will not typically upload and format articles in the backend of your website).
  • Pricing is a tad bit higher than other agencies.

TextBroker.com

TextBroker offers content at various quality levels as well.  Their 4 and 5 star writers generate decent content.

TextBroker Pros:

  • Amazing customer service.  They offered me a rep who handled all the ordering details and delegating work to writers.
  • Will upload and format in the backend of my website.  Granted I placed a large order, but they are the only article writing service who took the time to let me train them on formatting articles directly in my website.  I did pay extra, but the few extra dollars was totally worth it given the time it takes to upload and format articles.   They even obtain images for the posts.
  • Great quality: I’ve used 2 through 4 start writers and the content quality is good; in other words worth the money.

Cons:

  • The article ordering system is not as easy to use as iWriter and WriterAccess.com.

Content Development Pros

I included CDP in my latest case study. They delivered a very good article for the money.  I’m not currently using CDP for content but I have to say the article they delivered was very good.

Cost: $65 for 1,000 words.

I’ve used CDP extensively in the past.

Content Development Pros reached out to me suggesting I give their writing service a shot.  I’m always up for trying something.

I gave them a topic to cover and within 24 hours they delivered the article.  They went above and beyond.  The article is excellent.  You can read it here.

One very nice service they offer is they will format content and publish it on your WordPress website.  They will also get up to 5 images for your content.  There is an additional cost for this though.

I thought the writing and research was excellent.  It’s not the lowest cost content provider, but the quality is quite good.  I’m currently considering their concierge service for having them format and publish content for me, which would save me time.

Update: I’ve now ordered nearly $100,000 worth of content from this service.  The order is huge and involves many different types of articles so training is ongoing, but it’s been fantastic having all content formatted in the backend of my sites leaving me to merely review and publish daily.

Content Refined

Content Surge by Content Refined is a new service provided by Jon Haver.  Actually, this is more of a blog content management service than merely an article service.

Jon and his team will do the following for you:

  • Keyword research,
  • Content planning,
  • Write the content (native English speakers),
  • Obtain images (within reason),
  • Content goes through several quality controls, and
  • Formats articles in your WordPress website.

Pricing: $.08 per word.

It’s designed to be a one-stop content shop.  Actually, better than that, they basically manage the content production for your website.

I’ve gotten to know Jon in recent months and he’s one smart guy.  He loves setting up systems and he’s amazing at running organizations.  If you’re looking for full website management, check out this new content service.

Jon runs such a great organization and has had tremendous niche site success that I’m definitely using his service for product-oriented content.

=> Click here for Content Refined

iWriter.com

Cost: $20.25 and $72 for the 1,000 word article. I ordered two to test two pricing levels.

If you want low cost content and don’t care much about quality, iWriter.com is your content source.

The articles delivered in the case study were okay.  The $72 version was much better.  But neither were my favorite.

I recently had a project where I didn’t care too much about quality but price was important.  iWriter was the cheapest by far, but I did end up with 2 terrible articles. Fortunately, I was able to flag it as spam and had 2 new articles available in 24 hours so iWriter handled the situation with no questions asked.

iWriter.com Pros

  • Cost: it’s the least expensive content source I’ve ever used.
  • Fast delivery: Large batches delivered within 48 hours.
  • Junk articles were replaced within 24 hours.
  • Template ordering system.
  • User-friendly website: The user interface is really good and super easy to use.  Easier than the other services here.
  • I got lucky:  It just turns out that I did order a batch of content some time back and I even left content topics to them.  They provided me a piece of content that for nearly 3 years has generated thousands of visitors per month earning thousands of dollars since it was published.  These things can happen.

Cons

  • Quality: The quality isn’t the best.  I’ve used 2 through 4 star writers and the content is not quite up the levels of other writing agencies.  That said, and this is interesting, two articles I had done by 4 star writers rank really well on one site for decent volume keywords and have earned me thousands of dollars in ad revenue.  And get this, I didn’t specify the keyword.  I just said to write on a fairly broad topic and the writers chose 2 good topics that perform very well on my site.
  • Won’t upload and format in the backend of my website.

Constant-Content.com

Cost: $112 for the 1,000 word article.

Constant Content’s unique offering that I appreciate is their review writing service, especially software reviews.

If you need software product reviews, Constant Content is one of a few article writing software services that will write product reviews.

Their review writers will go into the backend of the software, play around with, get screenshots and then write an informative review.  This is not cheap, but the potential revenue is substantial.

Pros

  • Very talented and capable product review writers.

Cons

  • Difficult backend “customer area” for ordering content.  They have a casting call system that I don’t really understand.

ineedarticles.com

Cost: $20 for 1,000 word article.

I’ve used ineedarticles.com extensively for years.

Pros

Outstanding article rewrite service.  I hired them to do a great deal of rewrites of content I had written and need to use on a related niche site. They did a superb job for very reasonable rates.

Cons

No cons.  For rewriting, which is what I used them for, they did a great job.

Articlez.com

Cost: $44.63 for the 1,000 word article.

It’s been a while since I used Articlez.com so I can’t comment much about the service.  The content was decent and it was written by native English writers, but I don’t recall it being extraordinary.  It was fairly formulaic, but it did the job.

WordAgents

Cost: $120 for the 1,000 word article.

I learned about Word Agents from this post, which was super informative.  Always on the lookout for content providers I gave them a shot.  I placed an order and was very pleasantly surprised.

For the money, the content can’t be beat when you need really high quality content.

My initial concern was that WordAgents wouldn’t work in the backend of my site unless I paid extra.  I didn’t want to pay extra so I use a nifty plugin called Mammoth .Docx Converter, which imports entire articles, including formatting and images with one click.

If you need some excellent content, I recommend Word Agents.  They do a great job.  As always, be sure your instructions are detailed.  The time you invest in instructions will save you and your writing service a lot of headaches down the road.

Textun

Cost: $45 for the 1,000 word article.

About 1 year ago the folks over at Textun contacted me to give their writing services a shot.

Fast forward to today; I’ve received well over 1 million words of content from them.

Textun is my staple writing service.  I receive 10 to 20 articles weekly from them which forms the foundation of my niche sites.

The founder is a terrific guy who offers incredible customer service.  I’m talking same-day replies to questions and he’s been flexible to accommodate my specific needs.

I strongly recommend trying Textun for content.

Human Proof Designs

I did not order an article from HPD for the case study but I’ve ordered quite a bit content from them in the past (quite long ago now).

I gave Human Proof Designs (2 options: Article Packs or Monthly Content) a test drive for content at the end of April 2016.  It didn’t take long for me to realize they are very good for certain types of content.

Pros

1. Low cost:

I’ve never paid this little for this quality of work.

2. Product reviews and product galleries

This type of content is in HPD’s wheelhouse.  For the money, it doesn’t get much better.  HPD builds these types of sites by the dozen so creating the content is a no-brainer.

3. No contract and no subscription. Buy chunks of content on an as-needed basis.

4. Decent writing quality. All content reviewed by native English writing editors.  My editor will also assess their content with MarketMuse which should help ensure excellent content.

5. Flexible content types: I get them to write several types of content. You just need to provide clear instructions and examples/brief training videos help the training process.

Cons

You should review the work.  I think also it’s a very good idea to add a personal touch to the content … relate whatever product oriented content it is to your personal life.  Obviously no writing service can do this for you, but while it adds a bit to your plate, it can make a big difference.

Also, these days it’s best to use HPD for the product oriented content.  That’s what they focus on and so that’s what you should order from them.  I get my non-product content from other sources.

=> Click here for Human Proof Designs


B. Content Sources Only Used in the Case Study (1 article ordered)

Below are content sources I’ve used solely in the case study listed in alphabetical order.  The info below are notes made by my portfolio manager who did all the ordering and managed this case study.

Content Pit

  • Price per word: $0.049
  • Total cost: $49 USD
  • Date Ordered – Received: Jun 11 – Jun 22
  • Has a self-directed backend.
  • Articles are delivered, stored and managed in the backend.
  • No way to set a template in the client portal. There is a contact option so it may be possible if you ask them.
  • It’s an agency with in-house writers.

=> Visit Content Pit

Content Writers

  • Price per word: $0.175
  • Total cost: $175 USD
  • Date Ordered – Received: Jun 18 – Jun 29
  • Has a self-directed backend.
  • Articles are delivered, stored and managed in the backend.
  • No way to set a template in the client portal, you have to provide it each time.
  • It’s an agency with in-house writers.

=> Visit Content Writers

Copify

  • Must contact before placing the order.
  • Don’t show prices, you have to contact first. Price is $.08 per word.
  • Never answered initially. I followed up and they delivered an article.
  • Has a backend content management system.
  • Rely on their own in-house writers.

=> Visit Copify

Express Writers

  • Price per word: $0.09
  • Total cost: $90 USD
  • Date Ordered – Received: Jun 18 – Jun 23
  • Has a self-directed backend.
  • Articles are delivered, stored and managed in the backend.
  • There is no way to set templates in the client portal, you have to provide all the instructions manually every time you order.
  • Agency with in-house writers.

=> Visit Express Writers

FatJoe

  • Price per word: $0.045
  • Total cost: $45 USD
  • Date Ordered – Received: Jun 15 – Jun 20
  • Has a self-directed backend.
  • Articles are delivered, stored and managed in the backend.
  • No way to set a template in the client portal.
  • It’s an agency with in-house writers.

=> Visit FatJoe

HireWriters

  • Price per word: $0.035
  • Total cost: $35 USD
  • Date Ordered – Received: Jun 14 – Jun 15
  • Has a self-directed backend.
  • Articles are delivered, stored and managed in the backend.
  • You can set a template for future articles in the client portal.
  • It’s a service with a writers platform (Not in house), they let you choose which writers you prefer and they deliver several articles for you to choose your favorites.

=> Visit HireWriters

iCopify

  • Price per word: $0.030
  • Total cost: $30 USD
  • Date Ordered – Received: Jun 15 – Jun 16
  • Has a self-directed backend.
  • Provides some great keyword research.
  • Articles are delivered, stored and managed in the backend.
  • No way to set a template in the client portal.
  • It’s an agency with in-house writers.

=> Visit iCopify

PassionPosts

  • Price per word: $0.055
  • Total cost: $55 USD
  • Date Ordered – Received: Jun 11 – Jun 19
  • Has a self-directed backend.
  • Articles are delivered, stored and managed in the backend.
  • It’s an agency with in-house writers.
  • Specialist writers – the service assigns articles to writers with experience/expertise on the topics. Impressive.
  • Smallish team of writers so may not be able to handle a huge influx of big orders.

=> Visit Passion Posts

Scripted

  • Price per word: $0.135
  • Total cost: $135 USD
  • Date Ordered – Received: Jun 17 – Jun 21
  • Has a self-directed backend.
  • Articles are delivered, stored and managed in the backend.
  • You are able to create a template and re-use it with every order, they also let you set an previous article as your preferred style and template.
  • It’s a service that connects you with writers. They pick the writer for you but they are not in house. You can choose which writers you prefer and create your team of writers eventually.

=> Visit Scripted

SEO Butler

  • Price per word: $0.07
  • Total cost: $70 USD
  • Date Ordered – Received: Jun 17 – Jun 23
  • Has a self-directed backend.
  • Articles are delivered, stored and managed in the backend.
  • No way to set a template in the client portal, you have to provide it each time.
  • It’s an agency with in-house writers.

=> Visit SEO Butler

TextRoyal

  • Price per word: $0.040
  • Total cost: $40 USD
  • Date Ordered – Received: Jun 17 – Jun 22
  • Has a self-directed backend.
  • Articles are delivered, stored and managed in the backend.
  • No way to set a template in the client portal.
  • It’s an agency with in-house writers.

=> Visit TextRoyal

Text Paradise

  • Price: $.05 per word / $50 for the article.
  • Ordered June 11 and delivered June 15.
  • Has it’s own team of writers – in-house.
  • Fairly easy to order.
  • Articles delivered via Google drive (no backend to manage content).

=> Visit Text Paradise

The Urban Writers

  • Price per word: $0.061
  • Total cost: $61.49 USD
  • Date Ordered – Received: Jun 17 – Jun 25
  • Has a self-directed backend.
  • Articles are delivered, stored and managed in the backend.
  • You can provide a template with each order but there is no way to store them in the account.
  • It’s a service that connects customers with writers around the world.

=> Visit Urban Writers

Verblio

  • Price per word: $0.12
  • Total cost: $120 USD
  • Date Ordered – Received: Jun 17 – Jun 23
  • Has a self-directed backend.
  • Articles are delivered, stored and managed in the backend.
  • No way to set a template in the client portal, you have to provide it each time.
  • It’s a service that connects you with writers. The customer chooses which writer they prefer to write the article.

=> Visit Verblio

Writing Studio

  • Price per word: $0.20
  • Total cost: $200 USD
  • Date Ordered – Received: Jun 26 – July 8 (Not delivered yet)
  • Does not have a self-directed backend, to place the order you have to talk to them directly and they take a long time to answer.
  • They also send you an invoice via email to pay for the order.
  • Articles are delivered via email.
  • No way to set a template since there is no back-end portal.
  • It’s an agency with in-house writers.

=> Visit Writing Studio

Zerys

  • Price per word: $0.10
  • Total cost: $100 USD
  • Date Ordered – Received: Jun 18 – Jun 20
  • Has a self-directed backend.
  • Articles are delivered, stored and managed in the backend.
  • You can set a template to use for every order and you can use previous orders as templates.
  • It’s a service that connects you with writers, you get three articles delivered and then choose the one you like. You can add writers to your team.

=> Visit Zerys


C. Non-Writing Agency Content Sources (not in case study)

You don’t necessarily need to use an online writing agency or service.  With a little creativity and/or legwork, you can acquire excellent content from other places/sources.

The following options for content is really akin to building your own in-house team, which has it’s own benefits (and of course its own sets of problems).


Hire College Students

View post on imgur.com

If you a custom article or articles on any topic, one of the best sources for content is hiring college students.  They have access to incredible libraries for research, usually write reasonably well and are willing to work for very reasonable rates.

In fact, remote part time writing gigs are perfect for college students so they’re keen to get the work.  When I post writing job listings with university/college career services, I get a lot of applicants.

Just be sure you screen for quality.  Ask for a writing sample.  Also once you have a shortlist of applicants, assign one to two articles to each, offer to pay the rate you promise and then assess the applicants on the work they provide you.

Pros

  • Low cost:  college students need work and love remote writing gigs.
  • Quality content:  If you hire the right people by doing some basic screening, you’ll get top-notch work for very reasonable cost.

Cons

  • Turnover:  They won’t stick around forever.  You may also hire people who just up and quit all of a sudden.
  • Inconsistent output:  College students’ schedule changes throughout the semester (i.e. exams limit their time) and from semester to semester.  You must be flexible as an employer with your demands.

Upwork

Upwork is a freelancing website that brings employers and freelancers together.  It’s formerly Odesk (I have no idea why they rebranded to Upwork).

I’ve hired some amazing people on Upwork.  I’ve also hired people who happily took the job, wasted my time with training and then disappeared.  It’s hit and miss.

I’m currently working with one person from Upwork and he’s wicked smart, hard working and super polite.  He’s a delight and he handles much of my social media and video production on autopilot.

There are many excellent writers on Upwork too, but generally you’ll have to pay pretty good rates for quality writers.  I find a lot of capable people create listings as freelancers there but aren’t all that desperate for work.  They’re in demand and charge premium rates.

That said, if you want to pay less than full service VA services such as LongerDays and want a writer who will upload and format and publish content on your website, finding a writer on Upwork is your best bet.

Upwork Pros

  • Quality:  You can find amazing writers there with niche-specific expertise.
  • Payment systems in place:  Upwork handles all the payment aspects.  You just input your credit card details and Upwork charges for the hours worked by the freelancer.
  • Customized training:  You can hire someone who will upload, format and publish directly on your website.  This is a huge benefit of working with freelancers vs. article writing services.

Cons

  • Screening:  You must screen applicants.  It’s a tedious, but important process.  The worst part is even if you have a screening process in place you can still make a bad hire.
  • Expensive:  Quality writers on Upwork charge pretty high rates.  Don’t expect a bargain.  But the plus side is you can find very talented writers.
  • Turnover:  With article writing services, you don’t worry about your work not being completed.  They have plenty of writers available 24/7.  However, if you work with freelancers, you’re vulnerable to their schedule and they may up and quit.  You then must go through the hiring and training process again.

For more info about Upwork, these folks wrote a really good Upwork review.


Guest Posts / Features

Guest posts is a legitimate way to get some great content on your website for free.  However, you need to be tough and demanding.  The guest poster is getting a link or something in return.  Do not compromise the quality of your content just because it’s being offered for free.

Many websites have lost their appeal because they go the way of too many guest posts.

I reject more guest posts than I accept.  Usually I don’t even bother dealing with guest post proposals from media or SEO companies. They’re usually bad articles.

However, I love accepting guest posts from quality merchants, professionals in the niche and bona fide bloggers in the niche.  These are great guest posters and I love it when I get a quality guest post submitted.

Pros

  • Free content:  The price is right.  It’s free content.  That said, you’re giving away something such as a link and/or exposure.  Keep that in mind.
  • Quality:  Some guest posts can be awesome content.  I recently published 2 amazing guest posts from an ecommerce merchant.  Their content is so good and is formatted exactly per my instructions, I told them we’d love as much as they can provide.

Cons

  • Poor quality:  Of course you can reject the submission, but by that time you’ve wasted time.  You might just say “what the heck” and be done with it and publish it. I’ve done this in the past.  Now I’m pretty hard-nosed and just reject it or demand revisions until it’s up to snuff.
  • Hassle:  If you publicize that you accept guest posts, you’re going to waste a lot of time from lousy proposals. I usually don’t publicize the fact I accept guest posts for this reason.
  • Inconsistent:  Unless you don’t care about quality, you can’t count on consistent guest post content unless you do receive a lot of quality submissions.  Therefore, even if you publish guest posts, you’ll need other content sources.

Fiverr.com

I’ll be straight up here.  I wouldn’t use Fiverr as your main source of content.  Five bucks isn’t going to cut it for content.  It will be junk.  Yup, I tried it.

I’m not going to say any more on the subject.

Fiverr definitely has great gigs for other tasks, but quality articles is not it for five bucks.


OnlineJobs.ph

OnlineJobs.ph is a freelancer website for freelancers in the Philippines.  I’ve hired some great people there.  While they are non-native English speakers and writers, they write at an acceptable level for specific types of jobs.  For instance, for me they find images, upload images and describe images.  They do a great job.  However, I wouldn’t use them as your main content writer for lengthier, in-depth content.  For this you’ll want to either use a service or hire a talented article writer from another source.

If you’re lucky, you can find decent writers.  It won’t be the best writing in the world, but if you have simple writing assignments, you can find people there who will do the job for much less than native English writers, including article writing services.

Pros:

Cost:  Hiring people in the Philippines doesn’t cost much. They demand $3 to $8 USD per hour.

Hard working:  The people I’ve hired in the Philippines are very hard working. They try very hard.  I love their work ethic.

Cons:

Quality:  Because they aren’t native English speakers and writers, the content won’t ever be top-tier unless you’re very lucky.

Turnover: Because you hire freelancers, they can quit which means going through the hiring process again.

=> Click here for OnlineJobs.ph


Aspiring journalists

The website I purchased in December 2015 was built with free content by aspiring journalists who want to break into the movie, TV, video games and comics review industry.

The amount AND quality of the content is amazing.

I continue working with this huge group of amazing writers and editors.

That said, I’ve established a budget for paid content so I can pitch content ideas for the writers.  This way I can dictate topics I want to publish on the site in addition to the articles the writers submit for free.

Pros:

Cost:  It’s free content.  What else can I say?

Quality:  Because they’re trying to make a name for themselves and have a strong intent to be professional writers, the produce excellent content.

Cons

Lack of control:  I pretty much leave what gets published for not cost to the editors and writers.  After all, they’re contributing for free so I don’t want to get demanding and choosy.  That said, for content I pay for, I specify the topics and format.

Moreover, by lack of control, I mean that since people do contribute for free, they have a stake in the site. The site’s writers are to a large extent customers.  I depend on them and so I want them happy.  This restricts change because if many writers hate something that changes with the site, they may leave.

That said, while at first I worried about writers leaving, I don’t any more.  Even modest budgets for content goes a long way in this niche so it’s not hard finding excellent writers.

How do you hire free journalists?

I’m still amazed at how effective the site’s seller was at recruiting excellent writers for the site.  He would advertise available positions on the site and on industry job boards.

The thing is this won’t work in every niche.  Movie and TV reviews is a glamour industry that many people aspire to break into so it works for this site.  However, I know for my other niche sites, I won’t attract aspiring journalists.  Therefore, unfortunately it’s niche specific, but if it works in your niche, its’ a great deal.


Barter

Is there something you can offer in exchange for content?

I’ve never been big on barter, but suddenly found myself in a barter situation this year.  A Fat Stacks reader who is very good with marketing on Facebook offered to manage one of my FB pages for a discounted hourly fee in exchange for me helping her with her niche website.  Basically she gets free coaching and I get a top notch FB page manager who handles all the posts, messages, etc.

While my barter situation is not for content, the concept works.  If writing is not your forte but you are good with managing FB pages, for instance, you could barter your FB marketing services in exchange for content.  You might as well capitalize on your strengths.

The big problem with bartering is it’s hard to know if it’s an equal deal.  Moreover, you can’t count on it all the time. Solid barter situations usually arise out of the blue.  However, if you’re open to a barter scenario, put your mind to who you can offer your expertise to in exchange for them helping you out.  When it works it can be a very strong win/win.


In-House Team vs. Writing Service vs. Fully Managed Service: What’s Best?

I’ve done it all.  I’ve used a full website and content management service.  I’ve had my own in-house team put together with services like OnlineJobs.ph and Upwork.  I’ve ordered thousands of articles from services like WriterAccess.com and Textbroker.com.

What’s best?

They all have their pros and cons.

1. Online writing service:

  • Timely delivery: If you’re willing to pay a bit more, you can get a lot of content very quickly.
  • Variety:  These services have writers trained to write all types of content such as an SEO article, press release, scientific article, ebook, email newsletter, social media posts and much, much more.  Another aspect of variety is you can request different tones, such as a professional article, funny, light-hearted, folksy, technical, etc.
  • Volume: With a large pool of content writers, they can produce a ton of content quickly.
  • Quality: This can be hit and miss.  Sometimes, you can get awesome with 3 stars and weak with 6 stars.  You never know… but overall I’ve had a positive experience with reputable writing agencies.
  • Limited revisions:  Most offer at least one free revision, maybe up to 3, but that’s it.  Actually, the real problem is not the limited number of revisions but the free revision timetable in which to do it.  Often you have 3 to 7 days to request a revision.  After that you can’t do so.  I’m not blaming them… the last thing they want is to have indefinite outstanding revision requests.  However, as a user, sometimes I don’t get to that project for 10 days at which point I’ve exceeded the revision deadline.

2. In-House

  • Flexibility: This is a huge benefit – you can train them to write, format, upload… whatever you need for the ultimate individual approach for your content and website(s).
  • Cost: You can pay different rates depending on the content you need.  It’s the ultimate cost-control approach.
  • Speed: Because they work directly for you, you can change course or get something done very quickly.
  • Customization: Again, you can train them to produce content anyway you like.

3. Fully Managed Content Service:

  • Peace of mind
  • Don’t have to work.
  • Need I say more?

How should you choose a writing service?

I’ve used a lot of services because I’m always looking for good content at the best price.

I think the easiest way is to place 1 to 3 orders with a variety of services and then assess the content.  Of course, assessing content is fairly subjective, but at the end of the day you go with what you like the most.

Also, there’s no rule that says you can’t use multiple services at the same time (I do).

100 thoughts on “The Best Blog Content Writing Services for 2021 (CASE STUDY Comparing 27 Content Sources)”

  1. Hi, to be honest I regularly check on this article to see what’s new with article writing services. Before you last update of the article I discovered a new service you recommended called CleverGhosts and decided to try them out. So I paid for their starter package of $389.99 on November 19th 2020. Well, this is January 2nd 2021 and I have not received even a paragraph of article from them. They turned out to be a scam. I’ve wasted my time and money on this service. Looking at this December update, I’ve discovered you dropped them from the shortlist. It’s a good idea to vet these writing services thoroughly. Thanks for the update again.

    1. Thanks Peko. I used CleverGhosts for several months and it was quite good. Then I promoted it and they completely dropped the ball. As soon as they failed to deliver for many referrals, I updated this list. I’m really sorry about that fiasco. It was a disaster for many.

  2. What star level do you typically use for Content development pros? You mentioned $65 per 1,000 words and I didn’t see that as an option that they offer unless you are using 4 star writing and 3 star publishing.

    Is that what you do?

  3. I’m surprised that Textworkers.com is not on this list. They have been around for almost 15 years and have quite literally the best quality of any content writing service I’ve used. They have staff writers, not freelancers, and the service is fully managed. You just let them know what you want and they take care of everything else. The best part is, the content comes ready to publish. It includes advanced SEO, images, outbound links – and everything is 100% white-label. I highly recommend them to businesses and agencies of any size.

  4. Potential clients make decisions about engaging with you based almost entirely on your website content, which is why you need professional website content writing and blog writing services in Dubai. As the digital shop window to your business, your website content can help or hinder your appeal to a potential client. Position yourself as an industry leader with the best web content writing and blog writing services in Dubai.

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