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Blogging is an effective way to bring in new leads, educate your audience, and become more well-known as a brand. It’s essentially free advertising—or so they say. 

Posting regular blogs can generate leads well after the actual blog was first written, turning it into a “free” evergreen form of advertising. However, there is a cost that comes with the initial blog post. 

As a content marketing agency, we often get asked about the cost of our blogs. In terms of quality, cost savings, and the expertise that comes with one of our blogs, businesses are paying a one-time expense for long-term advertising investment. 

Blogs are cheaper, in the long run, and more cost-effective than PPC campaigns (but this does not mean that you shouldn’t do PPC campaigns). 

Here’s our guide to the financial cost of a blog post:

Cost of a Blog Post in 2021

The first thing that comes to mind when we think of the cost of blog posts is the actual cost of buying a blog from a content agency. However, note that some of the other blogs out there talk about starting your own blog as a sole proprietor, freelancer, or agency (which we won’t get into).

Every year, the online writing and content marketing industry experiences fluctuations in its pricing. 

For example, you may find that prices are on the lower end if you go to a freelancer website like Fiverr and you choose a freelance blogger with no experience, or they are located in a country with low personal expenses. In that instance, your 5 USD will go a long way. When you pay market rates or pay for higher-quality writers, then you’ll find yourself with a much higher-quality product.

Let’s break down the general tiers of blog posts and their rough estimates:

Low-level Writers

Bottom feeders will write your posts for as little as $5-$10. They generally ruin it for the rest of the industry because they don’t follow market prices, provide poorer quality blogs, and waste business’ time. Every industry has bottom feeders, and while you may end up paying these rates, your money is not going very far. 

Low-end writers are way below market rates, but here’s what you’ll get:

  • A writer who may be ESL (English is not their first language)
  • The post may have a lot of grammatical errors
  • A post with plagiarized text
  • A writer with no professional experience
  • No editing services

Mid-level Writers

Mid-level writers are more popular and convenient. Mid-level writers hit the $75 to $100 range. These writers might have experience, come from an agency, or still be doing blog writing part-time. 

With mid-level writers, you’ll get a decent blog:

  • A coherent post, which usually hits all the marks. 
  • It may come with a few grammatical and spelling errors
  • Little creativity or stand-out factors
  • Shorter posts, ranging from 300-500 words
  • Some SEO knowledge

High-level Writers

Once you realize that you should be hiring high-level writers, you will be much happier in your space. Understandably, this price tag is not for everyone, but you will get a very creative, well-thought-out, and well-researched blog. 

High-level writers range from $150 to $400 per post: 

  • The post will generally be 600-1,200 words (or more)
  • They follow SEO best practices, including long-tail keyword phrases in the title, headers, and copy
  • It’s original copy, and any paraphrased research is cited
  • If the content is an interview, then the interview is conducted properly
  • The writer speaks to the brand’s audience and in their voice
  • It is clear, concise, and compelling
  • Minimal cliches and passive verbs
  • Provided in a captivating format and style
  • Ability to update the post through content management system (CMS) software, if you desire 
  • Deliverables, like meta, keyword research, and alternate titles, usually come standard

Blog Cost Breakdown

The cost of a blog will depend on who you are buying from, the type of company you’re buying from, the topic, and additional deliverables. We have ignored low-level writers as their services are not worth considering. 

AveragesHigh-endMid-level
per blog$151 – $500$75 – $150
per word¢15 – ¢50¢7.5 – ¢15
Niche$$$$$
Add-ons$$$$$

When estimating blog posts, there are a lot of factors that come into play. For example, some content marketing agencies like okwrite won’t charge per word, and SEO keywords, meta descriptions, and alternate/SEO titles come free. 

Other times, you might have to pay for extras like for the article to be “more in-depth” or research. 

The crude reality is that many agencies will actually charge mid-level rates for blogs with spelling, grammatical, and punctuation mistakes. Or differentiate the cost per word based on the quality of writing.

Price of a Blog and Long-term ROI

Any sized business should scrutinize the price of a blog to maximize its returns. 

If you pay $100 for a blog, then this means you’ve spent $100 in one month, and that’s it. For blog expenses, the price is not recurring unless you want it to be. 

The time it takes for the writer to write that blog will be well-paid for, and then you, the writer/agency, or a staff member will have to post the blog and ensure it is indexed and following SEO best practices.

In terms of your long-term ROI, that single blog post does have the potential to affect conversions. Websites with blogs will have 434% more indexed pages (on average) than those without blogs, which means that your website is 434% more likely to be promoted online through organic search results. 

Other statistics suggest that 97% of companies who blog are likely to get links to their website content. 77% of internet users read blogs, so whether or not those readers will convert to your product or service, having a blog gives your company a better chance of bringing more traffic and online visitors to your website.

Users spend three times longer on blogs than on their email, which means that you have even three times as long to get a visitor to sign up for a product newsletter or to buy something. 

While we’re on statistics:

  • With the right strategy, your business blog can get you three times more leads than paid search advertising.
  • Businesses that blog generate an average of 67% more leads than those that don’t.
  • 57% of marketers say they’ve earned customers specifically through blogging.

Even if you spend $300 on a blog, and that blog is continually indexed, then you have one blog that is performing on your website. This blog might index your website more often, it might get more users to your website, and it might increase conversions

The more blogs on your website, the better your domain authority will be. 

Here’s what a basic monthly expense breakdown might look like:

Blogs p/month3-month6-month9-monthyear$ / month
136912$150
412243648$600
824487296$1200

Calculating Your Content Marketing ROI

There is something referred to as content marketing ROI, and it’s essentially the amount of revenue that you gain from content marketing, and it usually takes into account the cost of the creation and distribution of your content. 

1. Calculate How Much You Spend To Produce Content: $150

In this section, we’ll take a mid-level average of $150 (but we will calculate in-house content down below). 

And in this example, we will assume that the company is posting your content, has provided a featured image, meta, alternate title, and you aren’t outsourcing anything else for this blog (like video or audio). 

We’re also going to assume that this blog is perfect and doesn’t require major revisions (to keep it simple).

2. Calculate The Cost To Distribute Your Content: Free (In This Example)

This will include free promotional channels (blog posts, newsletters, social media), paid promotional channels (PPC, paid social, other channels), and tools or software distribution (like a paid social promotion). 

You may also have to include staff who help you do all this. 

3. Work Out The Dollar Amount For What You Got In Return: $1500 (Over Three Months)

This is a direct number that you will have to pull from your analytics. Go to Google Analytics and add up all the sales that you got directly through your distribution channels. 

This will include organic search, social media (if you used this), newsletters/emails, PPC, and more.

4. Calculate Content Marketing ROI

Content marketing ROI (%) = (Return – Investment / Investment) x 100

If you spend $450 creating a piece of content and get $1500 worth of leads, this is what it will look like:

(Return) $1500 – (Investment) $450 = $1050

$1050 / (Investment) $300 = 3.5 

3.5 x 100% = 350%

If you spend $450 creating a piece of content and get $1500 worth of sales, then your content marketing ROI is 350%

The chances your single blog will have a return on investment of $1500 might be low. In fact, you probably won’t see much until you have built up 3 to 6 months of blogging. Additionally, you shouldn’t be blogging at a rate of 1x per month as it is usually not worth it. 

Should I Pay For A Blog Or Take It In-house?

If you see that you won’t get a lot of ROI on a single blog per month, but don’t like the idea of spending $1,200 a month, then you may want to take the blog creation in-house. 

So let’s break this down: 

With outsourcing content creation to an in-house agency, you will pay for:

Follow that, you will then have to:

  • Distributing some of the content (depending on your channels)
  • Promote the content in PPC

The best way to understand in-house cost is in time:

In-house writer: 3.5 to write

In-house proof/editor: 1 hour to edit

In-house project manager: .5 hours

Software: $20-$100 per month (depending on the software)

Add-ons: 1 hour (writing the social copy, sourcing an image)

Posting: .5 hours 

Distributing the content: .5 hours

Promoting the content: .5 hours

Optimizing it: 1 hour

Average hourly cost for 1 post: 8.5 hours

Note that add-ons, posting, distribution, and optimizing will depend also on your software and whether you are doing these in batches. 

For all of the estimates, you’ll also want to remember that the averages are based on industry standards. If you have a staff member in-house who “likes to write,” they may not be able to complete the task in the above timeframe. In addition to that, that staff member might also be taken away from other tasks. 

While these timelines are estimates, you can get a sense of in terms of hours, how much time it will take away from your business to do an in-house blog. 

Remember, this is one blog.

Is Writing a Blog In-House Worth it?

If you want to be blogging four to eight times a month as recommended, then that will cost you 34 to 68 hours per month and usually take away from multiple employees. Or, it can be the full-time job of an in-house expert (who would most likely not be skilled in all the areas that are required; full-stack blog writers aren’t yet a thing).  

You could outsource this position as part-time or full-time, but again you might struggle to find one person who could do it all. You will also have to develop a content strategy, including finding the right times to post, coming up with good topics, optimizing the titles for SEO, and planning content schedules.

Let’s pretend that you could hire someone in-house on contract, and they would do all these things. You wouldn’t pay any additional taxes on them, and you could get away with paying $16 an hour. 

This would cost you: $544 to $1088 a month.

A blog that costs $150 would cost $600 to $1,200 a month.

Sounds good, right? 

In the end, it really isn’t worth it, especially to only save a couple of bucks. Granted, you can find an agency that provides a high-quality writer, a team of editors, a team of content strategists, and the ability to write meta, provide an alt title, and provide SEO keywords and optimization. They might even be able to promote it through some services, post it on your website, and write emails as well. 

While you may end up paying a little bit more for some additional services, agencies like okwrite do come with a lot, inclusive of the blog pricing. You can also access a lot of perks, including:

  • The option to update existing content
  • Access to content analytics and reporting
  • Content distribution
  • SEO best practices (for content)
  • Access to AI technology for optimized SEO strategy

This allows you to properly manage your business and grow your marketing strategy. 

Have questions? We are here to help.