Humans developed multiple complex writing systems to communicate with each other, and they’re often filled with grammar and spelling rules that affect the meaning of their sentences.
A simple misplaced comma or an incorrectly used semi-colon can convey a different message, which affects the quality of your communication. Grammar is so essential in our personal and professional lives that it makes the difference between a promotion and career stagnancy.
Many professionals agree that grammar skills correlate to positive workplace traits. On top of that, proper grammar is necessary for marketing, advertisements, and business communication.
Using a grammar checker tool can instantly improve internal and external communication, but why should you bother?
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Here are 7 reasons why proper grammar is necessary for business:
1. First impressions matter
It’s assumed that a person is credible, professional, and attentive if they care about good spelling and correct grammar. It takes great attention to detail to notice the difference between “their,” “there,” and “they’re,” in written text, although grammar obsession can be taken too far.
Your customers and employees won’t care if you do or don’t use the Oxford comma, but they will care if you misuse “your” and “you’re.” Failing to check your grammar before signing off on communication or a piece of marketing material can make you appear lazy or untrustworthy.
2. Avoid miscommunication
Although the thought of grammar-based miscommunication sounds silly (as it rarely happens in day-to-day conversation), it should be taken seriously in a professional setting. More specifically, you should pay attention when writing anything down, as this is where big issues may arise.
For example, if you wrote, “Jordan and Michael love their new car. However, he isn’t fond of the interior.” the reader would be confused which “he” you were referring to. Or, this could simply be a pronoun error if you meant to say “they” instead of “he.” Either way, the sentence is confusing.
3. Improve communication
Even if you can explain what you mean correctly, that doesn’t imply you’re being effective. For example, if your hiring campaign is focused on attracting coders, you can’t just say, “we’re looking for software engineers” as it begs the question, “what TYPE of software engineer?”
You don’t want to distract your readers from the message you’re trying to send. Leaving out too much or over-explaining can produce run-on sentences, dangling modifiers, or sentence fragments. Instead of pushing all your information in one sentence, break it up and clarify.
4. Upgrade your SEO
SEO or search engine optimization tactics increase your chances of ranking on search engines, but all your hopes are lost if you’re misspelling your keywords. While Google won’t penalize you for spelling mistakes, your poor writing will prevent your site from being seen when searched.
There are two reasons for this. For one, a page that has a lot of errors will have a high bounce rate. This tells Google your website is unreliable or low quality. For another, the presence of errors can make it impossible for Google to see your site as relevant to target audiences.
5. Grow your profits
Poor grammar is suspicious and could indicate to customers you’re not a legitimate business. A few errors here and there aren’t going to ring any alarm bells, but if multiple sentences don’t make sense, then you’re going to be fighting for sales. Good grammar makes you competitive.
Keep in mind that using slang isn’t the same as bad grammar. Depending on your audience, slang can actually boost your sales as long as it’s used correctly. This further shows that proper grammar is necessary to sell to an audience, regardless of who they are or how they act.
6. Increase productivity
All businesses rely on written guidelines, like professional policies or memos, to exchange information between team members. Correct grammar and spelling can help your employees understand instructions and protocols, which avoids confusion or general misunderstanding.
What results is a more productive team that doesn’t have to waste time asking about a strangely worded sentence. When your team understands exactly what you’re trying to say, they’re able to maintain harmonious relationships with their colleagues, which improves overall communication.
7. Reduce lawsuit risk
If your marketing material or business memo is interpreted incorrectly, you increase your risk of costly lawsuits. A grammatically incorrect document could spout misinformation that may guide the reader to do something dangerous. That action could be traced back to your company.
Large corporations have legal teams for this very reason. It’s impossible to assume how a person could interpret what you write, but a lawyer could run you through these scenarios. When it comes to protecting your business and livelihood, it’s better to be safe than sorry.