Getting into a job proofreading online is one of the best ways to make use of your ability to find grammatical, spelling, and/or punctuation errors. By doing so, you do not only help writers and publishers, but you also make money for yourself and your family.
There are people who easily notice and/or who usually cringe or smirk whenever they see grammatical, spelling, and/or punctuation errors. While some use their ability just for fun, others make use of this skill to earn money. Yes, just in case you haven’t heard, you can make money from correcting other people’s errors by working as a proofreader.
Over the years, more and more company offers editing and proofreading jobs. Good thing is that most of these companies do not necessarily require you to have a journalism or English background to be considered for the job. In fact, anyone who has the skills and the ability to find and correct errors can land a job proofreading online.
Working as a proofreader can be lucrative. It may not be as profitable as working in a regular office job, but for an online job, it is – especially if you are hardworking. But how do you end up landing in a job proofreading online?
Well, you got to learn the basics first.
Thus, we are going to share with you some of the commonly asked questions about starting a proofreading career. We are answering particularly the following questions:
- What is proofreading?
- What does a proofreader do?
- What type of documents does a proofreader work on?
- Who do you work for?
- How to tell if proofreading is for you?
- How much does a proofreader make?
- How to get into proofreading jobs online for beginners
- What companies offer work from home proofreading job online?
This information will surely help you jumpstart your search for proofreading jobs online from home.
WHAT IS PROOFREADING?
Proofreading refers to the process of checking someone else’s written work, ensuring it is free from any grammatical, spelling, and punctuation errors.
Furthermore, according to the Society for Editors and Proofreaders, proofreading is “the quality check and tidy-up”. However, in some cases, clients ask more than that.
Unlike editing, proofreading focuses on finding errors alone and correcting them. Proofreading is also considered as the last and final step before an article, a blog post, an academic paper, or any written documents are published or printed out.
While there are editing and proofreading software available or online sites that cater to finding errs in a written document, there are still a lot of companies and/or individual clients (mostly bloggers or e-book authors) who prefer to hire a proofreader. After all, nothing beats the ability of the human eye to find errors, right?
WHAT DOES A PROOFREADER DO?
Obviously, it is the job of a proofreader to find grammatical, spelling, punctuation, and in most cases, even syntax and formatting errors in a written document, and correcting them. Your job is to make the article or blog post or academic paper perfect, and ready for publishing.
If you want to learn more about proofreading, particularly the basics of proofreading, we highly suggest checking this tutorial video from the English Language Centre:
WHAT TYPE OF DOCUMENTS DOES A PROOFREADER WORK ON?
When working as a proofreader, you may be tasked to proofread anything – from social media posts and updated to emailed and blogs to academic papers, and e-books/books.
A lot of proofreaders, especially the experienced ones prefer specializing their services, and instead of catering to anything, they focus on a specific type of content, which could be any of the following:
- Student essays
- Court transcripts
- Blog Posts
- Social Media Posts
- Online articles
- Legal transcription
- Self-published novels
- User manuals
- Restaurant menus
- Press releases
WHO DO YOU WORK FOR?
Apart from specializing the type of content you work on, some proofreaders choose to work with a specific type of client as well, which could be any of the following as well:
- E-Book or Book Authors
- Court Reporters
- Real Estate Agents
- Local Brick and Mortar Businesses
HOW TO TELL IF PROOFREADING IS FOR YOU?
Although we said that most companies that offer proofreading jobs do not require specific educational attainment or professional work experience in proofreading – that does not mean that anyone can work as a proofreader.
Of course, these companies still look for certain qualifications among the candidates, which usually include the following:
- Have the ability to easily catch grammatical, spelling, punctuation, syntax, as well as formatting errors
- Have excellent written communication skills
- Have a mastery of the English language (or any language required for that matter)
- Have the ability to meet deadlines
- Hates grammatical, spelling, punctuation, syntax, as well as formatting errors
The last one may sound like we are just kidding, but really, as a proofreader, you must hate such errors or you won’t achieve perfection in the copy, right?
By the way, if you want to really check your proofreading capabilities, you can try working on sample proofreading tests. This will help you gauge whether or not proofreading is a perfect work from home job for you.
Here are some tools you can check to test your proofreading skills:
- The Ultimate Editing Test from ProEdit
- Test Yourself by the Society for Editors and Proofreaders
- Writing English, which provides several kinds of 10-question online tests
- Web Done Rightdo also have a proofreading test that you can use to check your ability
By taking practice tests, this will help you see for yourself if you are ready to work as a proofreader or if you would like to take this further.
HOW MUCH DOES A PROOFREADER MAKE?
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics of the United States, the average salary rate of a proofreader amounts to $37,550 annually and could go up to $61,480 per year depending on your years of experience, expertise and skills, and of course, on how hardworking you are.
Furthermore, for comparison purposes, we also checked with an online salary site called Glassdoor. According to the site, the average proofreader salary rate is $36,290 per year. As you can see, the data from BLS and the data from Glassdoor are almost the same.
If you come to think about it, given that it is an online job, a work from home job for that matter, that amount is already very reasonable. After all, that’s earning roughly around $3,000 monthly.
HOW TO GET INTO PROOFREADING JOBS ONLINE FOR BEGINNERS?
Let’s keep simple. Getting into a job proofreading online is easy as long as you have the right skills, equipment, and attitude. As we have said earlier, there are so many online sites that provide work from home proofreading jobs, all you have to do is choose and apply, and of course, pass the application process to get your proofreading career started.
Earlier, we already mentioned the skills required for the job. As with the technical requirements, you basically need to have a work laptop and a reliable, high-speed internet connection. Also, before you even start sending out your applications, make sure to sign-up and create a PayPal account. Most companies pay through this payment channel.
WHAT COMPANIES OFFER WORK FROM HOME PROOFREADING JOB ONLINE?
To give you an idea of where to apply for an online proofreading job, we gathered a list of some of the most sought after online companies that offer work from home proofreading jobs.
These are –
To qualify for a job proofreading online at Babbletype, you must first and foremost, be a native English speaker. You must be fluent in the English language and must have basic grammar knowledge. Babbletype is a great site to start your proofreading career as they welcome both experienced and inexperienced proofreaders. If you are looking for a company that pays on a weekly basis, then this one is perfect for you. Payments are forwarded via PayPal.
To get into ProofreadingServices.com, you will need to take and complete a 20-minute preliminary test. This test is just the beginning of the whole application process. Once you pass, you get to immediately start working on different types of copies or write-ups. The pay rate for proofreaders is at $19 to $46 per hour. How much you make on a monthly basis depends on your capabilities, as we all as the number of tasks you work on in a day. Wherever you are in the world, you are welcome to apply at ProofreadingServices.com.
Cambridge Proofreading is actively hiring work from home academic editors and proofreaders. Compared to the other companies listed here, Cambridge has quite strict requirements for the job. They specifically look for a proofreader or editor with a bachelor’s degree, which is not surprising because the company works on academic papers.
Once you are in, expect to work on a wide range of materials – mostly are dissertations and theses from different ESL students and academics. Proofreaders at Cambridge make around $20 to $30 per hour depending on your proofreading or editing speed.
Kirkus Media particularly looks for freelance proofreaders/book reviewers to check books written in English and Spanish. So, if you speak and/or use either or both of these languages, you are definitely qualified for the job. In addition, you must submit some of your writing samples to increase your chance of being hired.
If you have earned a high school diploma and wanted to pursue job proofreading online, then Lionbridge is perfect for you. The company is not quite strict when it comes to the educational background of the applicant. What they look for is the ability to deliver the job.
Enago is a company that hires proofreaders and editors to work on academic papers. Like Cambridge, Enago’s requirements are high. Even higher, in fact, as they specifically look for the ones with a Master’s or postdoctoral research experience apart from the academic editing experience. You must also be part of an acclaimed editing association to be considered for the job.
Polished Paper is a well-known online company that offers proofreading and editing jobs – which is pretty much obvious on the company’s name alone. To qualify for the job, you will need to submit an application form together with your resume online through their website. You will also need to go through a 35-question questionnaire editor test. You must pass the said test in order to be accepted at Polished Paper.
Apart from filling out an online application form, you will also be required to edit a sample copy as part of the company’s application process. Once you succeed, you can immediately start working on different proofreading tasks.
To qualify as a proofreader at Gramlee, you must be able to work fast as the website accepts clients who need editing and proofreading tasks completed within the span of 24 hours. For beginners, it may be quite challenging, but for the experienced ones, it is an opportunity to earn as much as you can. With such setup, Gramlee never runs out of work. If you are interested to work at Gramlee, all you have to do is submit your application form online.
Edit Fast is another online company that offers proofreading jobs. Edit Fast notifies its pool of proofreaders whenever there is work available. All have to do is sign up with them to receive notifications. This one’s very convenient especially for people who does a lot in a day.
English Trackers specifically hires academic editors. Their website has a job board directory, which includes proofreading that you can constantly check for any proofreading job vacancy. For convenience, you can also sign-up with them to receive weekly job listings.
Proofreading Pal is very famous among proofreaders and editors. The company, do have high requirements as well. To qualify, you must be a graduate of any degree (although they prefer journalism or English degree holders), as well as at least five years of proofreading and editing work experience. They do accept currently enrolled in college though as long as you have a minimum 3.5 GPA. Working for Proofreading Pal is worth it though as you can earn $200 to as much as $3,000 monthly.
Here’s another well-known online company that offers work from home proofreading and editing jobs. Wordvice specifically look for proofreaders and editors with previous work experience. Once you are in, you will most likely work on proofreading research articles, thesis, and essays.
Do you want to work with authors? If your answer is yes, then Reedsy is perfect for you. Reedsy though is more of a freelance marketplace. They do have a variety of job listings to choose from – including proofreading and editing jobs. The only downside we see is that Reedsy takes 10% of your total earnings as their fee for using their services.
Here’s another famous online site that provides work from home proofreading jobs. Scribbr hires freelance editors and proofreaders in different languages including English, of course. To land a proofreading job at Scribbr, you must be a bachelor’s degree holder and must have the ability to commit working for at least 10 hours a week, which very easy and very attainable.
Words R U
To land a proofreading job at Words R U, you must have a post-doctorate, master’s degree or equivalent experience in academic principle. The company prefers hiring with ESL (English as Second Language) experience. Apart from proofreaders, this online site also hires technical or science editors, academic editors, as well as business material editors. In most cases, work is available on weekends.
To qualify for a proofreading job at eCorrectors, all you have to do is email them your resume, and wait for further instruction from the company representative. Apart from proofreaders, eCorrectors also hire translators. Thus, if you know another language apart from English, you may also consider working on translation tasks.
So, there you have it. These are just seventeen out of the so many sites that offer job proofreading online. In addition to this list, there are also job listing sites that specifically provide freelance work like proofreading. These sites include Upwork, Felxjobs, and Fiverr.
OTHER WAYS TO FIND JOB PROOFREADING ONLINE
Apart from signing up to job listing sites or sending applications to different companies that offer proofreading and editing, jobs, you can also promote your work and find clients in other ways like:
– Starting a professional Facebook Page. The page should be intended to inform family, friends, and other people about your proofreading services. Just like in any business, word of mouth is still the best way to get your proofreading career started especially if you are a beginner.
– Join proofreaders’ Facebook groups. Networking through online channels or groups is also another way to get proofreading jobs online.
By the way, just a simple yet very important reminder, when dealing online, make sure to always check the identity of your client or the legitimacy of the company before dealing with them. As you know, while the internet offers bountiful opportunities, it also is a room for scammers. Better be sure than sorry.
There are plenty of ways to check the realness of clients or companies. One way is to Google them and checks for reviews. You can also ask around especially among proofreader communities online, or simply trust your instinct. When you are in doubt, then most likely, you are dealing with the wrong client or company.
FINAL THOUGHTS ON JOB PROOFREADING ONLINE
There are indeed so many sites and companies that provide job proofreading online. To be honest, it’s really just about finding the one that suits you – depending on your level of experience, expertise and skills, and your line of interest (if you prefer working on blogs, articles, academic papers, e-books, etc.).
Do you think you have what it takes to be a proofreader? If so, remember that there are various sites where you can find job proofreading online. It’s basically about finding the right one.