How to track your progress as a freelance writer

We all like metrics that help us understand our progress — and that can help us evaluate where to go next.

If you want to track your progress as a freelance writer, there are some different ways to measure how you’re doing, and see whether you’re moving forward.

Metrics for tracking freelance writing career progress


  • Hourly rate: Keep track of how much time you spend on an article and divide what you’re making by how many hours it took to finish it. Over time, a higher hourly rate can indicate that you’re working smarter, not harder.
  • Number of articles written: Track the number of articles you write each week and/or each month. Figure out an average that makes sense for your schedule and situation. Are you doing more work, or less work, than you want to do?
  • Average rate per word: Some freelancers like to figure out how much they’re making per word. Divide your fee by the number of words you wrote. Over time, work to increase your average per-word rate.
  • Number of clients: Keep track of how many clients you have. Do you rely too heavily on one client? You might need more clients. If you’re feeling overwhelmed, it might be time to reduce the number of clients you have and focus on increasing your rates.
  • Income: Don’t forget to keep track of how much money you make each month and each year. This can help you make decisions in the future.


Ben has an amazing spreadsheet he uses to track relevant data about his freelancing. It’s a way to quantify his work, as well as make decisions about which clients to keep and which to fire. Freelance Writer Academy members get access to this tracking tool in the Resources section.

If you want access to the tracking spreadsheet, templates, guides, and additional tools in addition to one-on-one coaching, consider signing up for one of our Academy courses today.