Do I really need to proofread?
Yes. Proofreading is important!
I know it’s dull.
But you just have to do it anyway (or pay someone else to).
Even if you’re the best at what you do, your website and other marketing materials send out a big clue about how you run your business.
Taking care to publish clear, error-free copy shows that you’re serious about doing a good job in every area of your business.
It’s another way to build trust with your prospective clients.
Okay, not everyone will notice if your website is full of spelling and punctuation errors. And many people won’t care.
But some will.
And that could affect their decision about whether to buy your product or service. Or someone else’s.
It’s that simple.
The good news is that you don’t have to write as if you’re taking your English A Level. Copywriters break lots of grammar rules to create more of an impact.
Basic proofreading tips
- Check for obvious typos and punctuation mistakes.
- Use a consistent layout and make sure that your paragraphs and sentences aren’t too long.
- Look for duplicated or missing words (reading your copy out loud can help you to identify these).
- Use spellchecker but don’t rely on it to pick up every single mistake. It won’t necessarily pick up words that are used in the wrong context.
- Allow some time between writing your content and publishing it, so you can review it with fresh eyes.
- If you can’t stretch to using a professional proofreader or copywriter, ask a colleague or geeky friend to help you out.
- If you do notice a mistake after you’ve published your page, don’t beat yourself up about it. What if I miss something?
There’s a huge difference between a sloppy piece of work littered with mistakes and a readable, researched article where one typo has slipped through.
Just correct it quickly. Then forgive yourself and move on.
Until next time.
Alison is a Freelance Copywriter based in Milton Keynes. For more information about Alison, click here.