Outsource Content Writing vs. In-House Writers: Complete Guide

Header image showing a writer to demonstrate the differences between outsourcing content writing services and in-house writers.

Should You Outsource Content Writing or Use In-House Writers?

Building a brand to attract leads online requires content—and then more content.

Search engines want fresh, relevant, high-quality content to serve users. Consumers want up-to-date content that speaks to their needs and answers their queries.

But executing a content strategy on your own can quickly drain resources because of the high quality standards it takes for content to stand out.

Ever feel like you never have time to write the kind of content that dominates Google and generates more leads? Yeah, we know the feeling….

For instance, research about content production shows it takes an average of over four hours to complete a blog post—a 67% increase from previous years.

With in-house production, you might be able to better control processes if you can stomach higher costs. Is it worth it? Should you outsource content writing or use in-house writers?

In this post, you’ll learn everything about outsourcing content writing vs. using in-house writers and how content outsourcing enables you to optimize efficiency & quality.

Balance Outsourced Content Creation and In-House Writing

Using in-house writers creates limitations you don’t face when working with outsourced content writing services.

With in-house talent, you’re limited to the skills, knowledge and time of each person. When you outsource, you can draw on diverse resources to expand the type and scale of your content.

However, every content creation project has its own requirements and goals.

There are places for both in-house and outsourced content teams. For example, companies in regulated industries may want in-house writers trained to write within compliance requirements.

Even in these cases, though, you can often pair outsourcing with in-house resources to scale up.

Outsourcing Content Writing: What You Need to Know

When you work with the right partner, outsourcing content writing helps you boost your bottom line, increase how often you publish and provide higher-quality content.

What Is Content Outsourcing?

Content outsourcing occurs when you have anyone outside your organization write or otherwise create content for you. This can include:

  • Having someone come up with ideas and create outlines and plans for content
  • Having people write and/or edit content for you
  • Having designers create infographics or other visuals

Why Should You Outsource Content Creation?

A main reason companies outsource content creation is to save money.

Outsourcing involves paying freelancers or content services only when you need content. You’re not having to pay an all-the-time salary (plus benefits) for an in-house writer.

Consider this breakdown to help you understand how much you can save:

  • If an in-house writer creates 1,000 words a day, that’s 5,000 words a week.
  • Working a total of 48 weeks a year (to account for vacations, holidays and sick time), the in-house writer creates 240,000 words in a year.
  • The average salary of a skilled U.S.-based content writer, including benefits and bonuses, is around $64,000 according to Glassdoor.
  • With an in-house content writer, you’re paying around 26 cents per word for the content you publish.

For the same $64,000 per year, you could get more than 460,000 words of content—almost double what you’d get with an in-house writer—when you outsource content writing.

Benefits of Content Outsourcing

The benefits of outsourcing content writing go beyond the basic bottom line, though.

What are the reasons to reach outside of your organization for content writing resources?

  1. Cost Efficiency
  2. Scale Up Quickly
  3. Increase Content Diversity
  4. Support Better Quality
  5. Connect With Industry Specialists

Cost Efficiency

As we already touched on, improving cost efficiency is probably the biggest benefit you get when you outsource your content creation.

In-house writers would need to speed through and really scale their output to match the cost-per-article, lest they have other content-management responsibilities.

Even then, you want your content managers to, well, manage content strategy. Generally, the more you outsource content production, the more money you save in your marketing budget.

Scale Up Quickly

When you’re outsourcing, you’re not limited to a single writer or even a few. The right content writing service opens the door to dozens or even hundreds of qualified freelancers.

You can quickly scale up content efforts without putting your business through a major recruiting push and onboarding dozens of in-house writers you may not even need all the time.

That lets companies of any size compete with larger competitors online.

Increase Content Diversity

To create quality content for SEO (the kind most likely to rank well in search results), your content needs to be useful and engaging.

That means your content is interesting and helpful to your audience.

Yet it’s easy for a single writer or small writing teams to get stuck on the same topics, rehashing them repeatedly without providing something new and interesting for the reader.

When you outsource, you increase your writing team’s diversity and their overall point of view.

That can lead to more interesting posts that people will engage with, so your content is more likely to drive leads and conversions.

Support Better Quality

Outsourcing content to freelance writers is sometimes associated with a reputation of lower quality. This can be true when trying to find freelancers on your own without a system in place.

The right outsource content writing services can offer processes for editing and quality control to ensure topic expertise, internal linking strategies and your brand voice shine through.

For optimal quality with content outsourcing, consider engaging with managed services that provide pre-vetted writers and logistics to communicate & apply your writing guidelines. 

Connect with Industry Specialists

An in-house writing team may know your brand, but their expertise is limited.

Outsourcing lets you bring subject-matter experts on board who can write or review content for accuracy and authority, ensuring your pages meet Google EAT guidelines.

Does Outsourcing Content Hurt Your SEO?

Many businesses wonder if outsourced content would hurt their search rankings and thus their ability to attract more organic leads online.

Well, outsourcing content doesn’t hurt your SEO. Google is on record saying there is no SEO penalty for having different writers as long as the quality is good.

In fact, working with external teams that know how to optimize content for SEO often improves your search-engine optimization efforts.

Freelance writers with experience in creating content tend to keep up with keyword best practices and understand how to write for a variety of audiences.

You can leverage those skills to help your pages land higher on search-engine results pages (SERPs) and generate more leads.

Using In-House Content Writers: What You Need to Know

In-house content writers also offer some benefits, such as a greater level of control over the content creation process.

Businesses keeping an eye on regulatory concerns or specific branding needs may turn to in-house talent as a first option.

But you can easily avoid quality issues and ensure branding & compliance with the right content outsourcing processes and partners.

What Is In-House Content Creation?

In-house content creation occurs when you use resources on your payroll to write or otherwise create content.

You can use people you hired for this specific purpose or people who do other jobs but may be able to write content too.

Why Do Businesses Choose In-House Content Creation?

Control is typically the main reason companies opt for in-house content writers. They can train writers to create content within specific brand guidelines, voice and compliance parameters.

The idea is that in-house content will be more publish-ready than outsourced content.

It’s true that you do have a bit more control with in-house writers. But you don’t have to sacrifice scale or savings to get the quality you want.

In many cases, the right process is a hybrid approach that leverages an in-house content manager to help maintain brand voice and freelancers to scale up to meet competitive needs.

How to Outsource Content Writing

You have two overall options when outsourcing content: working with individual freelancers or working with content writing outsource companies.

When working directly with individual freelancers, you first have to recruit them. That can involve placing ads for content writers, reviewing applications & samples and onboarding writers.

It’s a lot of work that can create delays in scaling content. Even after finding freelancers, you’re on the hook for all the communication, management and quality assurance.

Working with a content writing outsource company, you can access hundreds of qualified writers immediately to scale up quickly without the need to go through recruiting processes.

You can opt for self-serve marketplaces to work directly with pre-vetted freelancers at multiple quality levels or choose managed services to benefit from a dedicated content manager.

Whether you’re looking for bloggers, copywriters or subject-matter experts, Crowd Content has the freelance writers for hire you need to scale up, save money and improve your SEO.

Kevin Elliott

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Kevin Elliott is the SEO Manager at Crowd Content. He specializes in website marketing, driving organic traffic and helping companies realize their potential with content marketing. He also loves his dog Karl!

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