By Jay

Textbroker Scam Review Banner

There’s never been a better time to be a writer… or at least that’s what I’ve been told. There’s two sides to that story, but one thing is certain; websites like Textbroker make it a lot easier to get started. 

A lot of these "writer" sites are scams though, so which ones can you trust? Is Textbroker legit? In this review I’ll go over that because if you love writing, it's probably your dream to earn a living as writer. I get it. This website was born from my dream to become a paid writer and while it's not exactly how I imagined I'd earn my income writing, I now get to help others. In this review I'll discuss the following topics…

Disclaimer:
Please note, I am not a member or an affiliate for Text Broker. This review has been researched with information and/or testimonials that are available online in the public domain. Any recommendations and/or conclusions are strictly opinions and may not to apply to, or agree with, all persons or situations. 
See full disclaimer for more info


What Is Textbroker?


Textbroker is a content marketplace that connects freelance writers with clients to collaborate on projects that include product descriptions, press releases, web copy, blog posts, technical articles, white papers, social media posts and news stories.

Their client base ranges from small and large businesses to independent bloggers and publishing houses.

Personally… I recommend writing for yourself as it’s far more lucrative, but content mills like Textbroker do have their place in the work-at-home industry.  

Founded in 2007 by Jan Becker-Fochler in Germany, Textbroker is now headquartered in Las Vegas and one of the most popular content marketplaces.

Is Textbroker a Scam?


No… Textbroker is not a scam, but when your business involves a work-at-home/make money online opportunity, people get suspicious.

As home-based freelancing becomes more common I think perceptions will change, but for now… any company operating in this industry will be dealing with the inevitable scam accusations and comparisons.

And for good reason…

There’s a lot of scams out there. Some content marketplaces have a reputation of doing things like cancelling accounts for no reason and finding creative ways to avoid paying their writers.

That’s not the case with Textbroker.

Having said that… the reason you may have heard (or read) that Textbroker isn't legit is because of the low pay. It’s hard enough to make good money as a freelance writer...  but with Textbroker it's unlikely you'll even earn minimum wage.

Does that mean they're not legit?

The important word here is “freelancer”. You are effectively a contract worker managing a home business and Textbroker is your client. You have full discretion whether to accept or refuse a project, but because you’re not an employee, there are no minimum pay obligations.

With an estimated 100,000 writers and financial backing from Viewpoint Capital, Textbroker has a good reputation of being reliable and paying on time. They are definitely legit.


Who Is Textbroker For?


As an opportunity, Textbroker is for the aspiring freelancer. Anyone who loves to write... loves getting paid to write.

While professional freelance writers can earn from $250 - $1000 or more per post, everyone has to start somewhere right?

With Textbroker you'll make a fraction of that but the great thing about freelancing is that you diversify to add many sources of income.  

You can also make money doing things like online surveys with sites like surveyjunkie.com for example, or watching videos, searching the web, and visiting websites with inboxdollars.com

These can only provide extra spending money of course, but when you're freelancing, every little bit counts and make the difference between quitting your day job or suffering through it even longer.  

If you're serious about creating a real work-at-home lifestyle, starting an online business may be your best option. 

Making money from home might even be something you need because of health, children at home or just a desperate need to escape the rat race. There are countless opportunities out there today, Textbroker being one of them. 

If an online business is what you want though, then a starting point is what you're going to need in order to get what you want.

Now, I'm going to give you a free step by step beginner's guide to making money online and you can get it by clicking HERE.


How Does It Work?


Becoming an author for Textbroker is a four-step process…

1. Registration


I’m not sure why, but Textbroker is asking for a lot here. Maybe too much. But, it’s their site… so their rules.

You will need to provide your name and email of course, but you’ll also be asked for your full address, phone number, profession, date of birth and gender. They’ll also need for proof of US residency and a selfie showing your ID using your web or laptop cam.

If you’re a non-US writer, I’ll talk more about that below and explain how you can still write for Textbroker.
 

2. Submit a Writing Sample


Once you’ve registered you can either write a sample on a topic of your choosing, or provide one that you already have. It needs to be a minimum of 200 words and on something you’re familiar with.


3. Rating Assignment


It may take a week or two before you hear back from them after you’ve submitted your sample, at which point Textbroker’s editors will assign you a ranking between 2 and 5 stars. Your ranking determines the projects you work on and your pay rate.

4. Setting Up Your Profile


Now that you’re “in” you can set up your author profile. This can be a lengthy process but it’s important because it’s what clients will see.

Textbroker Author Profile

The main areas will appear as tabs.

  • General Info – Add your resume here along with things like pay rate (for direct orders) and availability (how many words you can commit to per week).
  • Abilities – Under this tab you’ll be asked to fill in your education, occupation, industry experience and type of writing you specialize in (eg. interviews, speeches, press releases)
  • Writing Samples – the most important thing a client wants to know about you is how well you write. Here you can include up to 3 original writing samples so they can see I your writing matches what they’re looking for.
  • Languages – Include any other languages you are fluent in so you can accept projects in those languages. You can also include writing samples here.
  • Interests – These are topics you like to write about. Clients often search by topic for a list of writers and filling in this section will improve your visibility.
  • Travel – Listing the places you’ve traveled gives clients a better overall picture of who you are, what your experience level is, and it can shortlist you for projects that require specific knowledge of a location.

Once you’ve completed this step (which may be a few weeks from the time you originally applied) you can start writing.


Finding Projects


When you’re new, the main way to find projects is to search for them. But as you gain experience there are other ways to land jobs within Textbroker.

Choose a Project


When you’re starting out this is how you’ll get work. Clients will submit projects and request writers with a specific quality rating. These go into an open order queue where you can search by topic and author rating.

Direct Order


As you establish relationships with clients they may request you specifically. You can negotiate your own per-word-price for direct orders regardless of your rating.

I should also mention here that the price you set is not the price the client pays. Textbroker adds 30% which is something you’ll need to consider when coming up with a fair rate.

Team Orders


I’m not entirely certain how team orders work or what the criteria is to join a team. However… other members have reported that being part of a team pays better with a higher number of available projects.

When a client submits a team project they set the per-word-price.


Textbroker Pay


For all the positive comments and reviews about Textbroker, this is where they fall short. It’s not likely you’ll earn enough to write for them full-time.

As mentioned earlier, your pay is determined by your rank(2 – 5 stars)… which is set by Textbroker’s editorial staff. I’ve included (below) an example of what a 500-word article would pay based on your author rank.

  • 2-Star - .7 cents/word (500 words pays $3.50)
  • 3-Star – 1 cent/word (500 words pays $5.00)
  • 4-Star – 1.4 cents/word (500 words pays $7.00)
  • 5-Star – 5 cents/word (500 words pays $25.00)

There’s a significant jump from a 4 star writer to a 5 star writer and although you may consider yourself a really good writer, your ranking can be affected by the type of projects you choose.

For example… you may knock it out of the park when it comes to first person POV articles, but struggle with third-person news releases and sales copy.

Choosing the wrong projects could mean rejections from clients which will not only hurt your rankings but could get your account closed.

I don’t know what their criteria is for 5-star writers but it’s a fair assumption that they are competent in most styles.

Everyone has to start somewhere though. 

If writing for those rates doesn't interest you, you can also make money doing online surveys on surveyjunkie.com or inboxdollars.com. Swag Bucks even pays you for things like watching videos, searching the web, and visiting websites.

Like writing 500 words for $7 though, surveys don't pay very much. They are a good first step for a lot of people learning to make money online but to make a decent income you'd have to so something more, like start an online business instead.

If making real money from home is what you want , then getting your foot in the door and learning where to start is what you need in order to get what you want.

To learn how I did it, I'm going to give you a free step by step beginner's guide to making money online and you can grab it by clicking HERE.


Textbroker’s Fee


Having purchased content before it’s important to remember that your per-word-rate is not the same as the clients. Textbroker collects a fee as well.

When buying an article for example, I had to keep in mind that the writer was not getting the entire $20 or $30 I was spending and adjust my expectations accordingly.

Likewise, as a writer you might think the client is only paying you a certain amount, but they are actually paying more, and I’ve seen this in many of the complaints…

“The client is only paying me xxx for this… what do they expect?”

So… building client relationships and establishing long-term projects goes a lot smoother when you’re on the same page here and understand each other.

With that said, these are the client rates…

  • 2-Star – 1.3 cents/word (500 words cost is $6.50)
  • 3-Star – 1.8 cent/word (500 words cost is $9.00)
  • 4-Star – 2.4 cents/word (500 words cost is $12.00)
  • 5-Star – 7.2 cents/word (500 words cost is $36.00)

As you can see, the amount the client is paying is significantly more than what Textbroker is paying.

For example… if you’re a 5-Star writer earning $25 for 500 words, the client is actually paying $36 and right or wrong, they expect a $36 article.

When you do the math, Textbroker’s fee ranges between 30% and 47% depending on star-ranking, which is among the highest in the industry.


Pay Method and Frequency


There’s a small minimum payout of $10 before you can request a payout which must be submitted by 11:59 pm (pacific time) on Thursdays. Your pay will be transferred via PayPal by the end of business Friday.

To request payment there’s a green button in your account that says “Account – Pay-off".

Non-US Writers


I was originally under the impression that Textbroker was only for US residents, and that’s certainly what they advertise.

However, when you’re on their website there’s small tab in the right-hand corner that says “International”. When you click on it there’s a drop down menu of languages you can choose from.

If you’re looking for English writing jobs outside of the US you’ll have to click on UK (English).

How to Access Textbroker International

You can follow the corresponding author pages to the Textbroker International application which says they’re hiring writers from the UK, New Zealand, Australia, Canada, South Africa and the Republic of Ireland.

International Author Registration

What I’m not sure about is whether you’ll have access to the same clients that US writers do. I don’t see why not but if that’s the case I’m sure Textbroker has their reasons. And, there may be more than enough jobs outside the US to keep you busy anyway.


Textbroker Tips


These are some tips and suggestions related to Textbroker and writing in general. If you’re a seasoned writer and freelancer you can skip ahead… but if you’re new, maybe you’ll find them helpful…

  • Don’t Use Quotes - Avoid using quotes when you’re writing content as Textbroker has a strict policy when it comes to copied content. It goes through an automatic checker (software that runs it through CopyScape maybe) and if it comes up with any duplicated content… quotes included, your content will be kicked back to you.

    It’s easier to just avoid using quotes altogether.   

  • Use Textbroker’s Writer Resources – As a writer, it’s easy for me to be overly confident and assume that I know what I’m doing. The truth though, is that I’ve been writing my own way for more than thirty years and I’ve developed a ton of bad habits that wouldn’t pass editorial review.

    Textbroker has many tutorials, videos and a community you can learn from.
  • Take Care of Yourself – Another issue that I (and many other writers) have suffered from is neglecting our health and developing bad posture. If you’re just starting out this might seem like a “parent’s lecture”… but believe me, after hundreds of thousands of words hunched over a laptop screen and snacking on unhealthy food, you’ll think differently.

    Use a timer, take breaks, walk, and if possible set yourself up with a large high-res monitor at eye level… your back, neck and shoulders will thank you.

    Of course, it goes without saying you should eat healthy…. not just for your physical health but for the cognitive benefits of a proper diet. When I’m eating healthy I write significantly faster, remain focused for longer, and my work requires far less editing because the original draft was much better.  

Textbroker Employee Reviews and Complaints


Most of Textbroker’s employee reviews are good, but like any company, they have their fair share of complaints. Some of the issues reported I’ve already discussed above.

  • Low pay.
  • Not enough projects to work on.
  • Some clients expect 5-Star content at 3-Star prices. They can be difficult to work with requesting multiple revisions (which are both time consuming and free on your part).
  • Outdated and cumbersome user interface.

Among the positive reviews, writers are saying…

  • Textbroker is reliable and even if the pay is low, you can count on them to pay on time.
  • Can choose the jobs that interest you.
  • It’s a good environment to get started and begin developing the skills that make an effective freelance writer.


What I Like


  • There are so many shady content mills out there that it’s nice to see one that has a reputation for being honest and dependable.
  • Work when and where you want.
  • Writer resources which include tutorials, videos, community help, and regular feedback from editorial staff.
  • Projects are automatically accepted and paid for if a client doesn’t respond within 4 – 8 days (72 hours if you’re going by the client’s terms of service).

What I Don’t Like


  • No passive income potential. When you write for someone else you’ll only get paid once.
  • In most cases you’re a ghostwriter. You won’t get credit for your work and you can’t use it for your portfolio.
  • Only 24 hours to respond and re-submit revisions or your work gets sent to another writer for modification and you don’t get paid.
  • Unless you have a 5-Star ranking, the pay is painfully low.

Final Thoughts


As far as content mills go, Textbroker is one of the better ones. However, it won’t provide a full-time income.

Making money as a writer is absolutely possible, but it requires more than just writing. You need to write with a purpose and know where the money is.

Marketplaces like these can be a good stepping stone and a place to improve your craft but at some point... if you want to make a full-time income from home, you'll need an overall freelance strategy.

Another great stepping stone if you're not sure where to start is online surveys. Survey Junkie will pay you for your experience and opinion on various consumer topics.  Inbox Dollars is another company that pays you for doing things online like visiting websites, playing games, watching videos and even searching the web.

If making real money from home is what you want though, then a strategy to start your own online business and generate income from multiple sources is what you need in order to get what you want.

To learn how I did it, I'm going to give you a free step by step beginner's guide to making money online and you can grab it by clicking HERE.

And, there are hundreds of other work at home jobs you can leverage.  

The goal of most writers though, is to produce your own content… a book, blog, screenplay or whatever, and turn it into a money making asset that provides passive income.

Thanks for reading my Textbroker review and if you have any comments or questions, please share in the comments section below.

You can sign up with Textbroker here.

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  1. While Textbroker does pay a little more than some make it seem (you just have to do a lot of work and type quickly), there are other issues that this site have. This is a legitimate paying company. However, they can and will turn on you. It is only a matter of time. One thing to do is you do become a member is check out the forums. There are a lot of stories of shadiness on there. For one thing, Textbroker does allow clients to practically get away with a lot while crapping on the authors. (e.g. a client can request an article revision while taking the original article and posting it on the site. This has led to some confusion such as the author getting accused of plagerism)

    Also, every once in a while, they will ask you to send in a picture of you holding your ID among other things for “verification” even after you are verified. Also, even though they say it will take 15 days, 10 days, 5 days, depending on what you are reading from them, the whole thing takes months.

    Another thing, revision requests can be suspicious as well. They will say that you have copied or coincided with another article. However, the article you supposedly copied is not even relevant to the topic of the article you have written. Also, the “identical” parts of the article are just common phrases that appear in practically every article.

  2. I’ve been with Textbroker for almost four years and writing seriously for it for two. I can shed some light on some areas that you were unsure about.

    Team orders are what authors should want to write for Textbroker. However, you must be at least at level 4 to get invitations, which start coming once you’ve written at least five accepted open orders at that level. I’m currently on 34 teams, with around five being consistently active and another five active on a semi-regular basis. Teams serve one particular client, and orders usually have exact directions regarding style, keywords, links, and the like. As a result, once you’ve had two or three of these orders accepted, you know what’s expected, and you can speed up. Seven dollars for a four-hundred-word article might not sound like much, but when you can crank out three in an hour (which is highly doable), you’re making $21. I write about 20 hours a week, which makes Textbroker a very lucrative part-time gig for me, and except for rare dry spells I exclusively write team orders. I do know of people who write for Textbroker full time, but I’m not that ambitious. 🙂

    1. Thanks Trish, I really appreciate your insight and will definitely direct a few people who are looking at freelance writing as a potential side income to your comments here. You’ve provided a great perspective and I especially appreciate that you took the time to share some specifics as well 🙂

      Regards,
      Jay

  3. Thank you, for the honest overview. It was excatily what I was looking for and very helpful. While I’m just starting out ‘testing the water’s ‘ if you will I hope to get into writing as a carrier rather full time or part time in the coming years. So I’m hoping this will be a steeping stone in the right direction.!

  4. Jay,

    Thanks for the well written article. Easy to read and provided what I thought were unbiased, fair comments. Really liked the ‘what I liked and what I don’t like’ section. It was so well done I didn’t even mind the “marketing” injected in the body of the article. Hope you don’t mind if I use quotations in my e-mail messages lol!

    Again, very helpful!

    Lance

    1. Hi Lance, thanks for the kind words… and no, I don’t mind your use of quotations 😀

      I appreciate you stopping by to read and comment,
      Jay

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