Freelance writers have a lot of opportunity to write online, but in some cases the rates are less than the same writing project might command offline. Assuming that there are enough advantages in taking online writing gigs to offset the disadvantage of a lower rate, should a freelance writer attempt to keep their online writing business separate from their offline writing business?
How far should something like this be taken? Multiple business names? Pseudonyms?
Or, is it unnecessary, and a professional writer can just move back and forth between two worlds without much difficulty?
Update: In response to some of the answers, I am attempting to make what I am getting at more clear, which unfortunately, makes the question much longer.
Generally speaking, freelance writing relationships with local businesses involve a certain amount of overhead that does not exist in a similar online relationship. For example, most of my local clients call on the phone, some require occasional meetings, and a handful require some work to be done on-site. All of these things increase the time to accomplish writing the actual words. Whereas, many online clients communicate via email, assignments can be found/claimed without meetings, and I never have to work on-site.
As such, for my business at least, it would not be worthwhile to take on writing a 500 word press release for a local client who wants to meet before the project and after to review it without charging perhaps double what I would charge to write a 500 word press release for an online client who just posts a job on a freelance writing website.
If, the local client were to discover that that discrepancy, would they want the lower rate in the future, or worse, be upset at what they were charged in the past? I know that it should not matter and that clients should understand. What I wanted to know is do they understand.
The catalyst for asking this question was that I realized that on some online venues there is a way to look at the history in such a way that someone could notice that ArcticLlama Freelance Writing had written a technical white paper for a certain amount (actually for a certain range). If that someone was a new local client doing research before contacting me, would that amount color their perception of what I would/should charge them.
For existing clients with whom I have a relationship, this is a non-issue because they would talk with me about it and I could explain. For prospective clients, they might make some assumptions and decide not to work with me without ever saying what the issue was.
I left the question more open than that because I had never thought of this before, and I was wondering if other freelancers had come across other factors that I hadn't considered that might arise in this situation.
The point of the question is asking if other freelance writers in similar situations had dealt with this issue and, if so, how they had made it work out, or if I was making a mountain out of a molehill.