Why Is Grammar Important Anyway?
  • By Jamie Boyle

    Copywriter

There are many stumbling blocks when it comes to writing content. Whether it’s for a website, social media channel, or a blog, you may come across some of the same issues.

Is this content interesting? Is it going to be useful? Does this content provide the answer my visitors are looking for? Well, my advice is to forget all of that (for now) and to focus on the basics, to begin with.

There aren’t a lot of readily available resources that are able to provide a definitive answer as to whether poor grammar can negatively impact your website, and I can’t claim to have the answer either. However, I can provide you with a convincing argument. So, let’s begin.

Make a Lasting Impression

Dwell time is the amount of time that someone spends on your website; the time between clicking on a link in the Google search results and closing the page. Now, there’s no concrete evidence that shows that dwell time is something that affects where your website is displayed on Google, but it’s safe to assume that the longer someone is on your website, the more useful they’re finding the information that’s on there.

At present, a visitor will likely spend around 15 seconds on your site before ‘bouncing’ away. This means that you have 15 seconds to make a positive impact on your potential customer. This is a very limited time. So, to give your website the best chance it can have of drawing in your target market, you need to get everything right. That starts with spelling and grammar.

Imagine dropping onto a website and seeing a basic spelling error right away. Maybe it would bother you, maybe it wouldn’t. But the fact is this: if it wasn’t there in the first place, there wouldn’t be a problem at all.

Content Is King

Back in 2013, a communications company asked over 1,000 UK consumers about what was most likely to damage their opinion of a brand on social media. A huge 42.5% claimed that poor grammar and spelling would drive them away from the brand, with ‘salesy’ updates coming in second with 24.9% of the vote. Now, 1,000 people obviously do not speak for everyone, but it demonstrates my point well. People are put off by silly spelling mistakes and less than adequate grammar, and that it isn’t just the pedants among us.

To add to this, professional translators, Global Lingo, also carried out their own survey, demonstrating that a massive 59% of more than 1,000 Brits would not use a company if their website contained spelling errors or grammatical mistakes.

So, using just the two above examples, we can conclude that roughly 50% of your target market may avoid using your company due to typos on your website. That’s an incredible amount of lost conversions that could be saved by just taking a little bit more care when writing. It may seem like a finicky reason to not utilise a company’s services, but to a consumer, errors may come across as unprofessional or even untrustworthy.

Basically, if your content is clear, concise, and well written, it’s safe to say that the people using your website, or following you on social media, are more likely to utilise the services you offer.

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