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Does Proofreading Pay Well? (Yes! Get All The Scoop Here)

There’s a reason why people like you are searching for the answer to ‘does proofreading pay well?’

And that’s because the answer is YES!

Whether you’re

  • Looking for a way to make some EXTRA money
  • In need of some QUICK cash to pay off an unexpected bill
  • Finding ways to monetize your language skills

You’ve come to the right place because I’m here to share the news that proofreading does pay well!

I worked as a proofreader for many years, it was my side hustle when I juggled my corporate job and became my full-time income earner when I left the bank. So I speak from experience!

You don’t have to have an English degree or years of experience to start a career as a proofreader. 

You certainly don’t need to speak perfect English or be a native speaker to become a proofreader. 

If you get a kick out of spotting and correcting errors in other people’s writing, even the smallest ones, then this job is for you. 

Earn a decent income and enjoy the flexibility of working from anywhere as a freelance proofreader.

It’s possible and I’m going to show you how much does proofreading pay and how you can get a piece of the pie. 

In this article, I’ll share with you:

  • how much do proofreaders make?
  • factors that affect how much you make as a proofreader
  • what is proofreading?
  • how to become a freelance proofreader
  • how to find proofreading clients
  • how to make more money proofreading

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Some of the links on here are affiliate links, and I may earn if you click on them, AT NO EXTRA cost to you. Hope you find the information here useful! Thanks.

If you want to know how to become a proofreader online but need some training, the Proofread Anywhere course helps you transition into a full-time proofreader/editor and run it as a well-paid business.

The Proofread Anywhere course begins with proofreading basics and then goes on to share advanced proofreading methods, how and where to find jobs, what rate to set, and common mistakes to avoid.

Caitlin is the lady who runs the course, and she has been a proofreader since 2007. She turned her love for proofreading into a full-time job and now helps others do the same.

The Proofread Anywhere course is packed with 40+ lessons in 8 modules, grammar-specific worksheets, and real-life example jobs.

After passing with 90% or higher on the final exam you will receive a Certificate of Completion and access to the Self-Publishing School Preferred Outsourcer Rolodex.

Ps; Caitlin is offering a FREE Proofreading workshop that will help you learn the basic skills and decide on whether freelance proofreading is for you. Perfect if you want to know how to become a proofreader with no experience and if you are looking for proofreading courses online for free.

How Much Do Proofreaders Make?

The average earnings of proofreaders, as reported by ZipRecruiter.com, is $46,466/year or $22/hour. 

The annual salary of a proofreader can fall between $34,000 – $58,500

Most freelance proofreaders charge by the hour or word. How many words can you proofread in an hour? 

Your experience and skills will influence your hourly rate, so you may want to charge less if you’re just starting out.

This is why a lot of proofreaders don’t charge per page. 

Depending on the formatting used, the number of words per page can vary, and some clients can take advantage of this to cram as many words as they can into one page. 

But if you’re still wondering, ‘How much do proofreaders make per page?’ you can refer to the standard set by EFA

Some proofreaders earn $16/hour while others are being paid as much as $28/hour

Still, you can earn a decent income as a freelance proofreader as long are you’re willing to put in the time and effort to find clients and take in as many jobs as you have time for. 

If you prefer the stability of a full-time job, the advantages of proofreading are that many companies, like publishing houses, legal firms, and businesses, hire proofreaders to make sure that all their written documents are error-free. 

Does Proofreading Pay WellFactors That Affect How Much You Make As A Proofreader

So why is the data showing some proofreaders earning $16/hour while others are being paid as much as $28/hour? How much do proofreaders get paid? 

Here are some of the factors that affect how much you make as a proofreader:

1. Experience

Clients are willing to pay more for an experienced proofreader. 

As you gain more experience, you will develop a keener eye for detail and take less time to complete the job. 

The more jobs you take on and the more you read, the better you will come to understand different writing styles and formats. 

2. Skills

Your skills are what is going to set you apart from the rest and is where you will see how does proofreading pay well. 

A client who trusts your work because of the excellent skills you’ve shown in the previous project will not hesitate to pay you your asking rate. 

If you’re a beginner, let me assure you that we all start from somewhere. I did, too. 

In fact, let me share with you the exact steps I took to become a successful freelance proofreader

The important thing is to brush up on your skills, either by taking a course or taking on as many jobs as possible. 

To charge more as a proofreader, make sure you are good at the following:

  • Attention to detail so you can spot even the smallest of errors.
  • Strong understanding of the language and how to use it, especially with grammar, spelling, and punctuation.
  • Good at solving problems so you can correct all the mistakes you find. 

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3. Expertise

You can charge more for proofreading jobs that require some form of expertise. Proofreaders in certain niches find themselves in high demand and being paid more. 

These are example of proofreading niches that offer higher rates:

  • Legal
  • Medical
  • Technical
  • Academic
  • Publishing

Remember that the expectations are also higher for these jobs because they will require knowledge of certain jargon and writing styles, which means you need to have better skills. 

4. The Job Scope

Every document you work on as a proofreader will be slightly different, so it’s important first to assess it to determine how much time and effort you will have to spend to fix it. 

Ask yourself the following questions:

  • Does it require some form of expertise? You can charge more for legal and medical documents because you will need to have an understanding of the jargon. 
  • Is it riddled with errors? This means you will have to put in more work to correct them than a document with fewer mistakes. 
  • What is the turnaround time? If the client gives you a short deadline, you can charge them considerably more. 

5. Location

How much does a proofreader make per hour also depends on their location. The following is the average salary for proofreaders in their country:

  • United States: $45,626/year
  • United Kingdom: $36,770/year (£28,519/year)
  • Australia: $44,450/year (AUD66,768/year)

A proofreader living in a major city will typically charge more than one living in a small town due to the demand for jobs and the higher cost of living. 

What Is Proofreading?

Proofreading is reading and checking a piece of writing for grammar, spelling, punctuation, and formatting errors. 

It is the last stage of writing before the document is published. 

Proofreading is important for any writing that is meant to be shared with an audience because even a few errors will make the work look unprofessional. 

Many people confuse proofreading with editing. The difference is that proofreading does not involve fact-checking or tackling in-depth issues like clarity and improving the overall quality of the writing, which is what an editor does. 

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How To Become A Freelance Proofreader?

Now that you know more about what does a proofreader do, if you’re interested in how to become a proofreader, here are some steps you can follow:

1. Develop your skills by taking a course and practicing them often. 

There are many courses available online but I’ve narrowed down the best proofreading courses so you can save yourself some time looking. 

2. Get some experience by offering your services to friends and family. 

As you gain experience, you can create work samples and compile them into a portfolio to show potential clients. 

3. Find your first paying client by pitching your services to proofreading companies

You can also network with other proofreaders, writers, publishers, and businesses to let them know you’re interested in freelance work.  

4. Decide on your fees and be prepared to negotiate with your client. It’s okay to start with a lower rate if you’re a beginner looking to gain more experience. 

But don’t undersell yourself, so find out how much does a freelance proofreader make in your area to know the right amount to charge. 

An entry-level proofreader salary is at an average of $22/hour. As you gain more experience and improve your skills, you can think about increasing your rates. 

5. Once you complete the job and get paid, remember to ask your client for a testimonial

You can post them on your website and social media when advertising your services. Testimonials are a great way to build credibility and attract new clients. 

How To Find Proofreading Clients?

Here are some tips on how to find proofreading clients:

  • List yourself on freelance websites like Upwork and Fiverr and apply for proofreading jobs there. 
  • Network with other proofreaders and let them know that you’re looking for a job. 

They can be your most valuable resource by referring you to clients or passing on any extra work. 

  • Create a website and upload your portfolio. Use it to showcase your skills and experience to potential clients. 

Remember to include your fees and any testimonials from previous clients.  

Take the time to network with writers, as they will likely need your services to proofread their books.

  • Cold email to pitch to potential clients. This is something I do all the time and it works. 

The key is to research and write a customized email about how your services can benefit them. 

I’m not going to sugarcoat it and tell you that landing your first clients will be easy. As with any job that is worth doing, establishing your reputation will take time. 

But keep persevering, and you will find it easier as you get better at marketing yourself. 

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How To Make More Money Proofreading?

Once you’ve built a reasonable-sized portfolio, you can consider increasing your rates. 

To do that confidently and make more money proofreading, follow these useful tips:

  • Niche down – You can command a higher rate if you specialize in a particular field. 

Make use of your background and experience to proofread documents in those niches.

For example, I have the expertise and knowledge to proofread legal and financial documents because I used to work in those fields. 

  • Offer extra services – Proofreading-related services like fact-checking or editing can help to boost your rates. 

Let your clients know that that’s something you can offer. 

  • Get certifiedTake a course and improve your skills and knowledge. 

You don’t have to have certification to become a proofreader, but it does help to show potential clients that you are qualified to do the job. 

  • Market your services to higher-paying clients by cold pitching, creating a website, and networking with others in the business. 

Don’t be afraid to take the first move and put your services out there. 

FAQ On Does Proofreading Pay Well

Can Proofreaders Make Good Money?

Yes, proofreaders can make good money. According to Salary.com, the average pay for a proofreader is $27/hour, but it can go up to $35/hour. 

The amount of money you can make as a proofreader depends on your experience, skills, certification, and niche. 

Those in the medical and legal industry typically command a higher rate. 

Is Proofreading Still In Demand?

Yes, proofreading is still in high demand. Human proofreaders are still needed even with the advances in grammar-checking software like Grammarly and artificial intelligence (AI). 

This software can miss out on context-dependent errors or require a more complex language understanding. 

Proofreaders will always be in demand as long as there is written communication. 

Is Proofreader A Good Career?

Yes, proofreader can be a good career. Here are some of the reasons:

  • There is demand for proofreaders wherever there is written content.
  • You can set your own schedule and work from home.
  • There is good pay for those with experience and specialized skills, especially in the medical and legal industries.

How Much Does A Beginner Proofreader Make?

A beginner proofreader can expect to make around $22/hour, according to ZipRecruiter.com

As you gain more experience and improve your skills, you can start to charge more. 

Becoming a proofreader part-time can earn you a decent side income, but many people have made it into a full-time freelance career. 

Put your keen eye for detail and language skills to good use by becoming a proofreader. 

Whether you’re looking to switch careers or a side hustle opportunity, the flexibility of the job is too good to turn down. 

The money also speaks for itself in does proofreading pay well

Remember to take the time to improve your skills and get positive reviews from your clients so that you can build a good reputation and command even higher pay. 

It can seem overwhelming at first, but we all start somewhere. Don’t wait. Use the tips I shared in this article and start making money from proofreading today. 

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