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Can Grammar & Spelling Affect Website Rankings?
Almost every day, I come across websites with grammar and spelling mistakes and it grates on my nerves. But guess what? I’m not the only one. Poor grammar and typos may result in lower rankings in Bing. Guess it’s starting to grate on the nerves of the search engines as well.
Duane Forrester, Bing Senior Product Manager, recently wrote a blog post that suggests Bing looks pretty carefully at the quality of content on websites, including grammar and spelling. He writes, “…but just as you’re judging others’ writing, so the engines judge yours. 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.”
Just because Bing isn’t as widely used as Google doesn’t mean you should dismiss this news as unimportant. Consumers actually do use this search engine and, therefore, you should optimize for Bing—unless you want to lose potential customers to your competitors.
What About Google?
Well, I’m guessing other search engines will soon have this same level of attentiveness to bad content. In fact, Google already does take poor grammar and typos into consideration. Although grammar isn’t a direct ranking factor, there is a correlation between spelling and PageRank (learn more). Granted, that was back in 2011, but there is an even more recent Matt Cutts video (from February) to prove that you should care about poor website content.
In this video where Cutts answers a question about whether it’s important to correct grammar on blog comments, he says not to worry so much about that as long as the grammar on your own site is fine and your content is high-quality.
But it goes beyond quality content control from the search engines!
How Poor Grammar & Typos Can Be Bad for SEO
- Links: Write, write, write! This is always our advice for ranking well and attracting natural links—but nobody wants to link to a bad website. They want to link to reputable sources. And spelling and grammatical mistakes make you look like a dumb-dumb, not an authority.
- User Experience: There’s another reason that pages with poor grammar and typos aren’t as likely to rank—the consumer! Google is always trying to improve user experience, and this can affect rankings. Web pages that don’t provide a good user experience aren’t as likely to rank well in the search engines. And if you came across a page riddled with typos and grammatical mistakes, would you want to stay and look around? No.
Need to Clean Up Your Website?
Maybe this blog post made you take a look at your own website. If there are mistakes everywhere, there’s a good chance you aren’t ranking as well as you could be. Don’t let that happen—contact Blue Corona. We are copywriters first, SEOs second. So you will get content that is not only well-written but also optimized for search engines.
About The Author: Alanna is the Quality Assurance Manager in Blue Corona's Maryland office. When she's not triple-checking websites and content for errors and consistency, you can find her at the gym with her twin sister or urban exploring with her husband.
View more blogs by Alanna Hernandez
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