How much does a blog cost in 2023?

Find out what it costs for creative content

Want to know what SEO content costs in 2023? In this blog, we’re going to explore various content creation options, including outsourcing, AI, and working with a professional content agency like 42group.

Content is critical for your website, but how much is it going to cost? That’s a question we’re asked by start-ups and established businesses looking to invest in SEO content – and we’re going to answer it.

In our research, we found the average prices for a blog in 2023 are between £50 – £250. The costs here are averages but give a good indication of what it will cost to create a 1,000-word blog or article that’s ready to publish on your website. For each content creation option, we provide an outline cost and quality score.

Write a blog yourself

Cost: Free

You can write, right? Blogging is just throwing down some ideas on a page, telling a story, inserting some keywords, and posting it on your website, isn’t it?

The purpose of a professional blog is to rank your website in Google, so you’ll need to ensure you’re delivering what the search engine giant wants. We’ve written a lot about SEO content, so check out our guide for everything you need to know.

The quality of your content depends on how good you are as a writer. Even if you’re not the best writer, you’re the experts at what you do – and you know what you want to say. One of our most popular services is content editing and content rewriting, where we take your notes and transform them into a complete blog post that’s ready to publish.

Quality score: Depends!

Use a writer on Fiverr

Cost: $5 and up

Have you visited a pound shop recently? You’ll be disappointed (or even upset) to know that not everything there is a pound anymore. Yes, inflation has caught up with the mighty Poundland, and it’s also caught up with the cut-price content mill, Fiverr.

Fiverr used to be an outsourcers dream, where you’d find a willing person (usually in another country) to generate 1,000 words for $5.

It was – and still is – cheap, but was it any good? No.

You get what you pay for when you commission content, and the stuff from Fiverr is as you’d expect. It’s cliché-ridden, unfocused junk that should have no place on a professional website. You have been warned.

Quality score: 1

Use AI to write your blog

Cost: £15 per month

AI is going to transform the world and render you, me, and everyone else useless. That’s the message you’ll get if you read any newspaper or professional marketing magazine, or website.

Now, call us cynical, but we’re not convinced.

Our experiments with AI so far have illustrated just how far language models have to go to develop great content. We recommend you try it yourself with ChatGPT or Bard and see what you think.

The content AI creates is basic, it’s derivative, and – worst of all – offers no insight or value to your readers.

Will AI content help your SEO? In the short term, quite possibly. As we’ve written here, Google doesn’t seem (yet) to penalise AI-generated content. But we don’t expect that situation to last.

In the future, AI my replace is (and hopefully, we’ll be paid to sit on a beach). But, until then, it’s a bad option to create content for your business. (If you want to know more about the dangers of AI, check out our post on why an MC is critical.)

Quality score: 2

Outsource to a freelance writer

Now we’re getting somewhere. Freelance writers are a popular choice for blog creation. If you find a good one (and it’s a big if), you’ll find they’re able to generate high-quality SEO-optimised content on any subject.

However, the world (OK, LinkedIn) is full of average content writers. We know because we’re often asked to fix their work.

Poorly written content is uninspired, bland, and boring. If that’s what you want to do as a brand, then go for it! But we think you deserve better.

Where freelance writers add the most value is specialism. If you work in a niche area, then a freelance writer – particularly one who has worked in the area professionally – can produce great content in a cost-effective way.

So, some freelancers are good, and others are bad. But how much do they cost?

In the past, freelance content writers may have worked on a per-word basis (a hangover from the days of journalism). Today, you’re more likely to be charged either a flat rate for a blog or an hourly rate.

We’ve scouted around, and here are some lower and upper figures to work with.

Per–hour: £20 – £50

Per-blog: £50 – £250

Quality score: 8

Employ an in-house writer

Cost: £25 – £30,000 per year

If you’re investing in large amounts of content with an agency, costs can quickly mount up. You might consider employing your own writer to create content for you.

Having someone in-house means they can become part of a team and will truly understand your business and culture. In-house writers can conduct interviews, create case studies, and generally get into the detail more effectively than anyone outside your organisation.

If you get a great in-house writer, you’re golden. Of course, the downsides are the costs and the lack of flexibility. You’ll need to pay your in-house content writer whatever happens, unlike an agency or freelancer, you can engage when you need them.

The salary figure is an industry average, but it doesn’t consider the on-costs that can add another 25 – 35% to the cost. Is it worth it? Only you can decide.

Quality score: 7

Use an SEO agency

Cost: £150 – £250

SEO agencies will offer to create content for you. The first question to ask them is: Do you have an in-house team? If not, they’re going to be outsourcing it – and that’s risky. You’ll want to know who they’re using, and get assurance that they’re using high-quality writers (not Fiverr, AI, or average freelancers).

You also need to consider what the end game is for SEO agencies. Their focus is, naturally, on improving your search engine ranking. That can lead them to focus less on the quality of your content and more on optimising it for search engines. And what works for Google may not be right for your audience.

If they outsource to an agency or freelance writer, they’ll be adding their markup to the price they charge you. That means you could be getting the content you need cheaper if you commission it yourself.

We can’t be too critical of SEO agencies, as we work with several of the UK’s leading providers. We’ve also seen how some of them use content to increase profits, compromising the quality of your website. As a result, we’re going to grade them in the middle.

Quality score: 5

Work with a professional content agency (like 42group)

Cost: £120 – £300

For our money, content agencies offer the best balance of quality and cost. Choose a content agency wisely, and they’ll be able to create content that satisfies Google’s requirements and is optimised for SEO while also being informative and engaging.

You’ll find hundreds of content agencies online, and it’s up to you to do your due diligence. Check out samples, read reviews, and get testimonials.

It’s important to speak to the content agency and discuss your requirements. Do they understand what you’re trying to do? Do they have a process? Do you like them?

At 42group, we’ve developed a robust and reliable process for developing content. We work closely with every client, listening to them and learning about the business, audience, and objectives. We don’t write straight away; but develop a strategy to deliver sustainable SEO success.

But, we’re talking about costs, so let’s cut to it. To provide you with a guide, we recently worked with a software company to produce 50 x 1,500 word blog posts, with a fixed fee of approximately $5,000.

A single 1,000 words blog post could cost between £200 – £300 depending on whether we need to do interviews, research, visits, and more.

Quality score: 10 (if you work with us).

Commission a content platform

Cost: £400 – £600

We can’t name names here, but if you’re looking for content writers and content agencies online, you’ll see platforms that enable you to access a range of “expert” freelancers to work on your projects.

They promise a lot, and some of them are great – but they are expensive. By commissioning a content platform, you’ll pay, on average, 30-50% more than working with an agency. Remember, you’re paying for the content platform (and some seriously expensive PPC ads!).

Is the content any good? Content platforms typically use the freelance writers mentioned before. Some are good, others are bang average. The problem is, you won’t know until you get to see the results – at which point, most will get you to sign up for a content “plan” or arrangement that could cost you thousands.

Our advice to any business that’s considering it is to work directly with an agency. The costs are lower, and you have total control.

Quality score: 6

So, how much should I pay for a blog in 2023?

It’s all about value. How much are you prepared to pay for content that genuinely connects with your audience? If you want an easy solution and don’t care about quality, outsource it to a content mill or AI programme.

If you want great quality content, then work with an agency. At 42group, we’ll work with you to create the kind of content that capture clicks and builds brands (and smashes SEO!). Contact us today for a no obligation chat about your content requirements.

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