As a consumer, what would you think if you landed on a website and the content was poorly written and full of spelling mistakes and typos? Would you say “Ah, never mind, I’m sure the product is top-notch”, or would you click away immediately, convinced that if they can’t even get the basics right, then actually purchasing something from them is a risk not worth taking?
As a freelance copywriter myself, I’d be in the latter group, because to me, spelling mistakes, typos and web content that looks as though it’s been written by a 10 year old doesn’t scream “PROFESSIONAL COMPANY” to me.
The fact is, if you’re trying to sell a product online, it’s absolutely imperative that you present your business in the best possible light. You need to look professional, experienced and capable, and if you can achieve that, then you’re a long way towards securing that customer.
Always bear in mind that whatever niche you’re in, there will be a lot of competition, so you need to ensure that you get the basics right, and that begins with your website content, email promotions and sales letters.
Get those basics wrong, and you’ll be losing customers left, right and centre.
And I’m not the only one who thinks so either…
Indeed, a recent article that appeared on the BBC website suggested that “poor spelling is costing the UK millions of pounds in lost revenue for internet businesses”. And believe me, in no way is that statement going over the top…
Indeed, online businessman Charles Duncombe revealed that when a spelling mistake was removed from his tightsplease.co.uk website, the site’s revenue increased by 50%! And similar results have been recorded elsewhere online, so if you want to make sure that you’re not losing customers because of simple spelling errors and typos, then you need to check your website NOW!
How to Proofread Your Website Copywriting
Of course, we all make mistakes, and that’s perfectly understandable. But failing to remove those glaring errors from your website content and then putting it up online for all the world to see is… well, criminal! You’re not doing your business any favours by being slapdash.
And to ensure that your content represents your business as well as it possibly can, then you need to undertake in a spot of proofreading. Now then, proofing your work for errors can be a tedious task if you’re not used to doing it, but it’s absolutely crucial to your bottom line.
The fact is, you NEED to do it, because it’s incredibly easy to miss things three or four times when reading through your content, because your brain will often become “blind” to what you’ve written. What I mean by that is that your mind will see what you MEANT to write, rather than what you DID write! So it’s always a good idea to take a break after you’ve finished writing the content, and then come back to proofread it later with fresh eyes.
Also, it can be very helpful to ask somebody else to check the content for you, because they will often spot mistakes that you didn’t.
Being a copywriter myself, I’d love to claim that I never make spelling errors or miss embarrassing typos that have crept into my work. Of course, I do. But I have a duty to myself and my clients to make sure that when I send them the finished product, none of those errors are present.
Always remember that mistakes in your website content aren’t anything to worry about. But failing to check over your work properly and remove them certainly is. Because basic errors like this WILL impact negatively on your business, and that’s a fuct 😉
Nick Cobb – Freelance copywriter and irritating stickler.