Every website needs content and for most webmasters, content creation is one of the most costly and difficult aspects involved with running a successful website. Not only does decent content cost a fair amount of money, but sourcing high quality writers who are reliable, offer great content and don't charge over the odds is a time-consuming task in itself. Often, if you don't know where to look for writers or what to look for, you'll find yourself paying for sub-standard content at premium prices, which can ultimately cost you a great deal of money that you can't afford to lose. But how exactly do you find high quality writers for your website and, more importantly, make sure you pay the right price for them? Know Where To Look There's a lot of different websites where you can source writers for your project but quite honestly, some of these are better than others. Freelancing websites are usually your first port of call as typically, these kinds of sites are jam-packed with writers all eager for attention. Some of the best freelancing websites include PeoplePerHour.com, Elance, Freelancer.co.uk and Odesk. There's quite a lot of variation between price points on these sites, so it's important to set a budget and keep to it, otherwise you might end up getting talked into paying more for content than you originally planned. You can also check sites such as Digitalpoint.com and other webmaster-related forums but beware, although it is perfectly possible to find high quality writers on these sites, they tend to be filled to the brim with non-native, low-cost and ultimately low-quality writers that aren't always so reliable. Know What To Look For Ultimately, every writing job is different. Your website might have a particular writing style that you want your future writer to adhere to or you might require a lot of research for each article. All of these things will define exactly what you need to look for, but the important thing is that you make what you're looking for as clear as possible in your brief. Make sure to highlight the qualities that you're looking for in a writer in great detail when you create a job listing for your project. Tell people about the style you're looking for and if possible, give examples. Doing this will ensure that only the most suitable writers contact you and therefore, will minimise your workload sifting through the potential candidates. If you're looking for writers on one of the many freelancing websites, take into consideration how they come across in their first message. Is it written well or are there grammatical errors? This might seem obvious, but you'd be surprised at how often this actually occurs on these types of websites. You also need to check out their freelancing profile. If they've done work for clients before, they'll likely have a plethora of reviews just waiting to be read by potential clients. These are often a good indicator in terms of quality, reliability and client satisfaction. Any writers without positive reviews should probably be avoided in most cases, unless there's a genuine reason for the lack of reviews (such as a recent site sign-up) but even then, you're taking a bit of risk. One last important thing that you need to look for is the location of your writer. Most freelancing profiles will state their location (i.e. country) and often, you'll get a great deal of proposal from countries such as India and the Philippines. While there's nothing wrong with hiring people who work from these locations, it can often be a tell-tale sign that your writer isn't a native speaker and therefore, will likely produce sub-standard content. Know What It Costs As previously mentioned, there is often a lot of variation in pricing on many of the freelancing websites and often, this can be a little confusing. It's hard to know what price is right and what you should be paying. So, let's simplify it. Typically, anything below $1.50/100 words will be sub-par writing; the only exception to this is usually a discounted rate that is sometimes given by new freelancers looking to build up their profiles/reviews. The $1.50 - $2.50/100 words range will probably get you decent copy that while not exceptional, will be perfectly adequate with a brief proof read and edit by yourself. For anything over the $2.50/100 mark, you should expect a high level of quality with little/no grammatical errors and a high attention to detail. This is a rough guide, although it is sometimes possible to get a bargain, especially with 'new' freelancers. Conclusion Find writers doesn't have to be difficult but it will take a bit of effort and time on your part. Many people rush the sourcing process for writers which often results in sub-standard copy and also, a short-term working relationship. It's much better to put the effort in during the initial stages and find a great, high-quality, reliable writer that you're happy to work long-term with, as this will ultimately reduce your costs in the long-run.