What Is a Content Writer?

Jan 16, 2020

Content writers are professional writers who produce engaging content for use online. They're Internet-savvy individuals who create articles, blog posts, and other forms of written Web material.

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  • 0:00 Content Writer Job Description
  • 0:50 Required Education
  • 1:40 Salary Information

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Content Writer Job Description

Degree Level Bachelor's degree
Degree Field(s) English, journalism, communications, or creative writing
Licensure/Certification Certificate programs available for
Experience Writing samples and portfolio typically required
Key Skills Strong writing, grammar, and research skills; knowledge in the specific writing field; social media and web skills a plus
Mean Annual Salary (2018) $73,090 (for writers and authors)*

Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

Content writers typically create content for the Web. This content can include sales copy, e-books, podcasts, and text for graphics. Content writers use various Web formatting tools, such as HTML, CSS, and JavaScript and content management systems to help create their work. Content writers produce the content for many different types of websites, including blogs, social networks, e-commerce sites, news aggregators, and college websites.

Aside from writing content, these writers might also be responsible for making sure the sites' pages and content connect. They're also responsible for setting the overall tone of the site. Content writers accomplish these tasks by researching and deciding what information to include or exclude from the site.

Required Education

Content writers may need a bachelor's degree or higher. Many employers hire writers with degrees in English, journalism, communications, or creative writing. Depending on the subject matter, content writers might need a degree in a particular field. For example, a content writer creating content for an online math course might need a degree in math in addition to demonstrating solid writing skills.

Content writers might enroll in electronic writing certificate programs. These programs are available at the undergraduate and graduate levels and offer courses in such topics as Web design, blogging, wikis, electronic rhetoric, and technical writing. In many cases, employers are more considered about writing and grammar skills than with education. Many employers require a writing test to be completed by applicants.

Salary Information

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reported that writers in general earned a mean yearly salary of $73,090 as of May 2018. However, there was a wide variance in wages among writers. The bottom ten percent of professionals took in $31,700 or less each year, while the top ten percent of these workers made $121,670 or more annually. The BLS reported that technical writers in particular earned a mean wage of $75,500 as of 2018, with most of these professionals making between $43,110 and $114,930 each year.

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