Manage Your Writing Time with Time Tracking Software and Tools
One of the most pernicious obstacles to a productive and ultimately successful copywriting business is misuse and misappropriation of time. I’m wondering how big a chunk of your daily writing time is being interrupted and if you can see a more profitable future with a little wise time management and time tracking technology.
Time management can be broken into 2 distinct, but definitely symbiotic, categories:
- Management of tasks and to-do lists, which falls into the Get Things Done category
- Measurement and management of granular time intervals spent on those managed tasks.
Here are the tools and methods that actually allow you to track actual minute-by-minute and second-by-second time spent per writing job, time spent per client, and time spent per project and/or task, etc.
This of course means you already need to have some organization to your work schedule and begin to see exactly how your profits increase when you know how to get things done.
Time Tracking for Web Copywriters
You can track your daily writing time as simply as setting a stopwatch or even a kitchen egg timer then jotting down the time you actually work on a specific client’s project, article, or even your own blog or website.
But for many writers these simple tools—while able to start and stop instantly—don’t cache information, have a memory, and ultimately fail to offer a Big Picture of time spent.
Professional Time Tracking Tools
If you want an instant tool that will measure your time AND cache it for later evaluation, you’ll want to explore some of the actual time tracking tools made just for freelancers and other results-driven business professionals.
Free time tracking tools, at the very least, give you start, stop and pause buttons that sit unobtrusively in your navigation or toolbar, allow you to set up various project names and track time per project, and may give you options to export data to business spreadsheets. But that’s pretty much the limit to freeware time tracking.
Time tracking tools you pay for – license or subscription -- give you many flexible business and time management features should you need them, including:
- Track exact time with start, stop and pause buttons and see how you can eliminate guesswork, and short-sighted estimates that could cost you money.
- Create client and project subcategories so you can allocate needed time AND confidently account for every minute spent on a particular writing project or client.
- Invoicing and billing features that give you convenient, accurate AND professional invoices based on actual time spent.
- Work groups or project management options let you integrate others into projects, share documents, and manage actual time per task.
- Reports—weekly, monthly, even annually --let you begin to see exactly what tweaks you must make to projects, your overall writing schedule, or to work groups, in order to build a more profitable writing business.
- Risk-free trial periods allow you to test full functionality – you get to see how nimble a tool can be and if it works for your business.