You've started an online business and are busier than ever. You've got a lot on your plate, and you're juggling multiple tasks at once. You remember that you were supposed to send out a tweet to maintain your social media presence, and in a hurry, you type out a tweet and post it.
After a while, you notice your Twitter notifications blowing up. You think, "Nice! My last tweet is getting a lot of engagement!" as you log back in to check. In horror, you realize you've made a huge mistake.
You used the incorrect form of "your," and now you're suffering the consequences. Customers are retweeting your mistake and making fun of your brand, your follower count is going down, and now you are listed in "25 of the Worst Brand Typos".
Luckily, this isn't a real tweet from Dynadot. However, this situation has become a reality for businesses of all sizes. Grammar mistakes can lessen your brand's credibility and reduce the impact of your online campaigns. While establishing your business, ensure that your grammar is consistent across these channels:
Social media is one of the most common channels for grammatical errors for several reasons. For one, you can post from your phone while on the go, increasing the likelihood of spelling errors and unintended auto-corrections. Secondly, most social posts are short and concise, so proofreading your text feels unnecessary if you're not using so many words. Lastly, most brands have casual back-to-back communication with their customers through social, so it's normal for a typo to slip in every so often. However, customers and other users won't hesitate to point out when you've made a grammar error. Take the same care you would to proofread a 200-word email to double-check your 30-character tweet.
When a new customer visits your website, their initial impression is crucial. If the first thing they notice is a typo, they may question if your company and products are legitimate. For this reason, all the text on your site needs to be grammatically correct, from one-word buttons to lengthy descriptions. The accuracy of your text content also affects SEO. If visitors are continually bouncing from your site because of your poor grammar, Google will detect this and prevent your site from ranking in search results.
Poor grammar is a common trait of spam and phishing emails, which you do not want to associate with your brand. A misspelled email headline or body content can negatively affect your email campaigns and prevent you from relaying important information to your customers. Customers expect professionalism from email correspondence, which includes proper grammar.
Fixing an online grammar error is quick and painless; however, correcting a mistake on a product label that has already been duplicated hundreds of times is quite costly. If your business creates physical products, any text on the label, packaging, or product itself needs to be free of errors. Customers are even quicker to notice a mistake if they see it on a tangible product.
With so much writing involved with maintaining your business, how can you ensure that it's mistake-free?
- Read the text to yourself or have someone read it to you. One trick is to paste the text into Google Translate and listen to it read back to you. You'll be surprised at the errors that your ears will pick up that your eyes don't.
- Consult the best writer you know to proofread your writing. Re-reading the same content over and over might give you tunnel vision, so having a fresh pair of eyes examine it might reveal mistakes that you overlooked.
- Use an online proofreading tool to catch any remaining mistakes.