It comes as no surprise that I am passionate about writing. Not just that, but quality content and the use of language. And yet, I still come across people who state that anyone can write. To be fair, yes, anyone can write. But, not everyone can write well.
I do not claim to be perfect and I don’t know anyone who is. However, these days I love nothing more than getting the red pen out. I get excited over proofreading a piece of content – I see it as a challenge.
But, what about when a business doesn’t have a proofing processes in place?
How can bad spelling and punctuation affect a business?
- It makes you look unprofessional
- It can ruin your reputation
- It affects your website rankings
- It costs you money
- It leads to inaccurate business data
If a site is full of spelling errors – or even just one obvious one – people instantly distrust the site, and future sales can reflect this.
Not only does it look unprofessional, it looks sloppy.
Improve your business
Google’s Panda Update was introduced in February 2011. It was a search filter meant to affect sites with bad content, stopping them from appearing in Google’s top search results. Therefore, if you have bad content, you can’t expect to rank well.
It is thought that Google Panda algorithm targets the following:
- Thin content – A lack of content on a page.
- Duplicate content – Large volumes of content found elsewhere on the web.
- Spun content – This is usually machine-generated content.
Google is becoming smarter and cracking down on bad content. It’s, therefore, no surprise I’m coming across more and more evidence that suggests a website can significantly improve its position just by ensuring the content is of good quality.
Online entrepreneur Charles Duncombe conducted an analysis of several e-commerce websites and found that in one case, a site’s revenue doubled when a prominent spelling error had been corrected.
Adjust your strategy
You can also use a spelling error to your advantage…
You may have a stringent proofing process in place, but customers make mistakes too and these mistakes can affect your business.
You may be trying to rank for correctly spelt branded terms, but think outside the box.
Customer misspellings can affect your search visibility. One example of this is when Bathrooms.com found that customers were misspelling “bathroom suites” as “sweets”. Following this, Bathrooms.com decided to rejig their online strategy and acquired the domain BathroomSweets.com, transforming the site into a functioning product page where visitors can learn more about bathroom suites and common spelling mistakes. It has since been redirected to their main domain, allowing them to benefit from the search traffic.
Address your data
Content is everywhere, even within your business data. What’s more, data is your most valuable asset. It impacts everything from email deliverability, with UK businesses wasting £220 million sending mail to the wrong people each year, to customer service and revenue generation. Therefore, it’s vital you implement processes to ensure your staff input the correct data, and maintain the quality of your data.
As I’ve already stated, no one is perfect and typos make up to 58% of data inaccuracy issues, therefore it’s imperative you clean your data on a regular basis.
These are just a few ways spelling mistakes can affect your business. Have you been affected by bad spelling or grammar? Share your stories @QuibbleContent or add a comment in the section below.