Does bad grammar matter in business blogging?
A blog topic can be attractive and easy to comprehend, but with some grammatical errors. Does this really affect the blog traffic and annoy its readers? Or is it the case that if the subject you are blogging about is unique and your writing is clear, the grammar makes no difference?
The commonly held belief is that blogging allows a more casual kind of writing, and therefore bad grammar is relatively more accepted.
After researching the topic, my conclusion is that the answer is both yes and no. For almost any topic, bad grammar will make your post stand out as poorly written compared to competing posts on the subject. This will reflect badly on how well you are perceived as a professional in your industry.
In the rare case you have truly discovered the ideal market that no one else is writing about and you are writing about a unique subject, you might be able to get away with bad grammar. But even then, why would you? In order to establish yourself as a professional in an industry, you need to be well informed and valued.
Bad grammar is an indication of poor writing, absence of proofreading, and a general indifference to the quality of the output you are producing. It makes your blog post hard to comprehend and it limits your ability to express what you meant to write. What will be the consequence? Your readers will lose interest. Additionally, Google’s search algorithm will eventually recognize the content with the grammar mistakes and will rate your website according to the level of the written content.
My suggestions for improvement of bad grammar:
- Before you write another sentence, get yourself a copy of The Elements of Style by William Strunk Jr, and read it cover to cover (it’s short so don’t be worried).
- Use an online grammar checker to review your content.
- Ask a friend who is good in grammar to proofread the content you’ve written and point out the three examples of bad grammar and/or your major pitfalls (things you consistently get wrong).
- Turn these examples or pitfalls into a short list.
- Work on improving your grammar by reviewing every new post with your list next to your blog to remind you what you’re looking for.
- Repeat after a month or two.
If you had any doubts about the impact that bad grammar may have on your bottom line, consider the following survey published by Standing Dog Interactive— which found that 58% of the users were “considerably” annoyed by the presence of copy errors, with one respondent volunteering: “If… I see a grammatical error, I’ll leave without purchasing a thing” Nuff said?!
Malki Ehrlich. Ginger Software