How much does a copywriter cost?


Marisa Twentyman

follow @dirty.copy

Lover of naps, cheese + crackers, and leaving parties early. 

I'm also a creative copywriter, and I write words to make brands money.

Want me to write some for you? Send a gal an email x

Hi, I'm Marisa


It’s like the wild west out there in the land of copywriting quotes. 

Except without the guns, the saloons, the damsels in distress and anything vaguely related to the wild west.

But, there is a lot of price slinging going about in the dusty recesses of the internet. And who’s to know what one should be paying for a good quality copywriter? How much does a copywriter cost?

Let’s stride on in, don our studded vests and get amongst it 💰

Copywriting Prices Vary WILDLY

Anyone can smack the word ‘copywriter’ on their resume, so there’s no standardised pricing for copywriters. 

Basically, the market dictates. 

The complexity of the job dictates. 

And more importantly, a copywriter’s testimonials and results dictate. 

So the prices vary wildly, making it even harder to know a) what to pay, and b) if you’re getting value. 

Copywriters on Upwork

The cheapest place you’ll find a copywriter is on Upwork, a job platform for freelancers to advertise their skills and clients post jobs they need done. Copywriters insert relevant tag words to their profiles, and you get to read a little about their style, past clients and read some of their work. 

You can find copywriters from $11 USD an hour to about $200 USD an hour. I had a little nosy, and some were average, and some (here’s looking at you Toni.Live), were GREAT. 

Freelance Copywriters

More established copywriters who aren’t on Upwork, however, usually charge by the project, and this includes both freelancers and agencies. For websites, email sequences and sales pages, they’ll usually meet with you first on Zoom via a discovery call, outline the scope of your project and come back to you with a bespoke proposal and a bespoke price. 

It’s usually a more white glove service, with usually more proficient, trained and experienced copywriters who can command those rates because they deliver results. However, there are a lot of great copywriters on Upwork with successful careers…it just takes a little more sifting. 

Quotes vs. Hourly Rates….what’s better?

So Upwork charges by the hour, and more copywriters outside of Upwork usually charge by the project.

So what’s better?

Charging by the Hour

As with the case with most things, if it seems too good to be true, it usually is. If someone’s posting work as a copywriter for $11 an hour, it might flag that they:

→ don’t know the value of copywriting

→ don’t know the complexity of the process

→ haven’t invested in upskilling with copywriting courses

→ aren’t able to attract higher paying clients

Charging by the Project

A copywriter who charges by the project usually has a higher ticket price point, and usually has invested in premium copywriting courses. This means they’re able to deliver better work (translation = more sales for their clients), and understand the complexities and nuances of working with a client to develop something unique, optimised and geared for higher conversions. Experienced copywriters generally know how long a project will take, and based on their hourly rate (that they typically won’t share with you), they’ll create a tailored proposal and quote. 

A fixed project quote also means safety for the client. You’re not gonna be whacked in the wallet with an invoice that’s double your expectations. However, an hourly rate may also surprise and delight you with how efficient your copywriter is. 

Ultimately, there’s no hard and fast rule, and the internet tells me that $27 USD per hour is the average. BUT the best copywriters I know all value themselves at at least $100 an hour (for both USD and NZD), regardless of whether they quote by the hour or by the project. And regardless of whether they’re on Upwork or market themselves independently. 

Let’s Take a Look at Some Project Rates

I had a little – ok, BIG – snoop at some established copywriters’ costs for day rates (6-8 hours) and I’m here to give you the skinny. 

Or in some cases, the fatty.

Copywriter A: $600 USD or $965 NZD

Copywriter B:  $1415 USD or $2277 NZD

Copywriter C: $2056 USD or $3308 NZD

Copywriter D: $3500 USD or $5630 NZD

These day rates cover all types of deliverables, from sales pages, to small websites, to email sequences, to several blogs. 

And for full websites? Prices started from $1900 USD ($3100 NZD incl GST) and ranged to $8500 USD ($13 600 NZD).

Seems like a lot, doesn’t it? Until you consider the strategy meetings, the research, the competitor research, the market positioning, the writing, the user experience (UX), the proofreading, the SEO keywords annnnd the feedback. 

Of course, the more niche someone is (e.g SEO copywriter, SaaS), the more they usually charge. 

The Clever Copywriting School also has this guide which takes you through pricings for different deliverables from blogs to email sequences to websites to sales pages and more. 

So which copywriter should you choose and how much should you pay?

It comes down to your brand, your style preference, their testimonials, who you think would gel with, and, of course, your budget. 

But ultimately, if you’re trying to save money on your messaging it might end up costing your business sales. Call me biased, but communicating with your customers might just be the most essential component of your brand. 

Because a great copywriter knows their messaging is backed up by data, strategy, psychology and research, and can deliver you results. 

AKA money in your bank…new shoes on your feet, new clothes on your back, new cowboy hat on your head. 🤠

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