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What Is a Content Writer?

Content writers are professional writers who produce engaging content for use over the Internet. They're Internet-savvy individuals who create articles, blogs and other forms of written Web material. Continue reading to learn what content writers do, how they prepare for a career in the profession and how much they can expect to earn on the job.

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Content Writers: Career Overview

Content writers are behind much of the written content found on the Web. These types of writers must have strong English and writing skills, as well as experience using Web publishing software and technology systems. Most workers need at least a bachelor's degree to secure entry-level employment.

Job Description

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, as well as 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

Most content writers, regardless of what they write about, usually 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.

Individuals without a writing-related degree may still be able to find work in the field, provided they have a knack for writing. Another option for content writers is to 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.

Salary Information

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reported that writers in general earned a mean yearly salary of $69,250 in May 2013 (www.bls.gov). However, there was a wide variance in wages among writers. The bottom ten percent of professionals took in $28,310 or less each year, while the top ten percent of these workers made $117,050 or more annually. The BLS reported that technical writers in particular earned a mean wage of $70,290 as of 2013, with most of these professionals making between $40,270 and $105,760 each year.

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