How much do copywriters charge in 2017?

The relentlessly helpful blog

23 April 2017

The Professional Copywriters’ Network has just released its second annual survey of copywriters. The 2017 survey was completed by 538 copywriters, whose average age was 41.

View the full PCN 2017 survey

Some findings of the PCN’s 2017 survey of copywriters

  • Average day rate for copywriting: £339 (£392 in London)
  • Average annual earnings for freelance copywriters: £36,012
  • Most used pricing model: flat project fees (72% of respondents)
  • Least used pricing model: per-word fees (7% of respondents)
  • Gender pay gap in copywriting: women were paid 29% less than men
Copywriters' average day rate was £339 in 2017
Source: PCN 2017 survey

Copywriting pricing models

The 2017 survey showed that per-word pricing was again the least popular pricing model for copywriters. I’ve argued for some time that per-word pricing turns words into commodities – but words are NOT commodities.

Copywriters’ preferences for charging models were split between flat project fees and daily or hourly charges:

  • 58% preferred a flat project fee
  • 41% preferred a daily or hourly rate
  • 1% preferred a per-word rate

Only 1% of copywriters prefer per-word rates.Tweet this

The gender pay gap in copywriting

When it comes to average full-time copywriting earnings, men are still being paid significantly more than women: in 2017, the gender pay gap was 29%.

Average gender pay gap for copywriters in 2017
Source: PCN 2017 survey

When looking only at freelance copywriters’ earnings, the gender pay gap was 28%:

Freelance gender pay gap for copywriters in 2017
Source: PCN 2017 survey

View and download the survey

Thanks to the Professional Copywriters’ Network for putting together such a well-presented survey. You can view and download the full report here:

View the full PCN 2017 survey

Over to you

What do you make of the results? Were there any big surprises? Do you think copywriters are overpaid?


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John Espirian

I’m the relentlessly helpful®️ LinkedIn nerd and author of Content DNA

I teach business owners how to be noticed, remembered and preferred.

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