Good Grammar Will Boost Your Site Ranking

By Elin Enrooth

As a journalism graduate, I can spot a grammar mistake a mile away. I cringe when I see a misused “their” and “there”, or when sentences just don’t make sense.

Luckily, I’m not the only one that cares. Correct grammar usage is pretty important if you want your website to rank well online.

These days, business owners tend to focus more on their SEO strategy than making sure that their website has a sound foundation in the first place. Principles such as grammatically correct web content must be integrated into your SEO strategy in order for your website to be successful.

Good Grammar Will Boost Your Site Ranking

Grammar is a ranking factor

Error-free content has a better chance at ranking higher in search engines. Not only should you want users to understand your content, but you also want Google to understand what it’s about so that it will help direct relevant traffic to your page.

Search engines read each website’s content to discern what it’s about. Good use of grammar helps search engines read the text and grasp the message behind your content. As a result, they will be able to rank your content for the right keyword phrases.

While Google has stated that they don’t penalize sites for grammar or spelling errors, they have confirmed that more reputable pages do tend to have better spelling and better grammar.

Matt Cutts, the head of webspam at Google, produced a video addressing the relation between grammar and SEO. He said that no, spelling and grammar are not officially included in the list of factors Google considers when ranking websites. He said it would be difficult for Googlebot to first decipher the language of the page and then differentiate between multiple languages.

“If you are a banking web site and you have terrible English on it, then I assume users will lose trust in your website.”
- John Mueller, Google

However, Bing looks pretty carefully at the quality of website content.

“If you struggle to get past typos, why would an engine show a page of content with errors higher in the rankings when other pages of error free content exist to serve the searcher? Like it or not, we’re judged by the quality of the results we show. So we are constantly watching the quality of the content we see.” - Duane Forrester, Bing

Good grammar makes for a better user experience

Correct grammar usage greatly improves the experience users have on your website. When it comes to content, user experience is based on comprehension and readability. As users, we expect proper grammar and spelling. It’s a baseline and an indication of professionalism. Good grammar establishes trust and credibility and will therefore result in a better user experience.

User experience is one factor that affects a website’s ranking in the search engine results pages (SERPs). Websites with a good user experience will have more visitors and rank higher because Google believes they are the most relevant.

A bad experience, in turn, will negatively affect a website’s ranking. While search engines may not have an exact algorithm to assess spelling and grammar, they do have algorithms that detect bad user experiences. Website content with typos and bad grammar is seen as unreliable and untrustworthy. Users will quickly leave a website and go somewhere else if the content is poorly written. High bounce rate and low time on page are signs that the website isn’t credible and therefore not worthy of high rankings.

Authoritative websites want to link to high-quality content

Authority websites will only link back to a website if the writing quality meets their standards of quality and accuracy. The more authority a website has, the stricter they will likely be when proofreading.

How to proofread your work

Try these three proofing methods for error-free content:

Read out loud

This will help you catch run-on sentences and misplaced words. Your ears will hear mistakes your brain missed.

Ask for a second opinion

Ask a colleague to give your work a once-over. No one’s perfect and often a fresh set of eyes will catch errors you may have missed.

Clear your mind

After you’ve finished writing, take a break and step away from your computer. Take as much time as you need, then proofread your work. This will give you some much-needed distance so that you can approach with a fresh perspective.

Use an online proofreading tool

Grammarly and Hemingway are just two of the many free digital writing assistants available.

Need help producing error-free content?

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