The short answer to whether you should edit and proofread your blog is yes. Every page and blog post should be proofread and edited because the quality of your writing reflects on you as a blogger or business owner.
This article will look at what editing and proofreading are, reasons why both are important, and discuss how to proofread and edit your blog.
What Are Proofreading and Editing?
Proofreading and editing are two steps in the writing process. Editing comes before proofreading and checks the content, structure, and organization of a piece of writing. Proofreading is the last step before publishing. It checks for surface-level mistakes, such as spelling, punctuation, capitalization, grammar, and formatting mistakes and inconsistencies.
Both steps are equally as important to create high-quality and error-free content. If you are serious about running a successful blog, then you should take the time to edit and proofread your blog and content before publishing.
4 Reasons to Edit and Proofread Your Blog
1. Professional and Credible
One U.S. study found that 96.5% of respondents said that grammar mistakes influence the image of a person. And more than 97% reported that grammar mistakes influence a company’s image. People notice poor-quality writing and will jump off your blog if it’s littered with grammar and spelling mistakes.
Blog pages and articles that are clean, concise, and professional let your audience know that you are credible. They also allow for a better reader experience as there will be no stopping at every glaring error. Instead, your readers can enjoy reading your blog and focus on the message you’re trying to convey.
2. Better Performing SEO
You also need to prove to Google that you are a credible source if you want to have high-performing search engine optimization (SEO). If Google perceives your blog or content as lacking credibility, which can escalate due to grammar and spelling mistakes, then your blog will not perform well.
Using consistent and concise language that effectively uses keywords (without stuffing them) also helps boost your SEO. Through proofreading and editing, you can make sure each sentence is clear and uses targeted language to reach your intended audience.
3. Refine Your Brand Voice
Through proofreading and editing, you can make sure that you are consistently using a strong brand voice. Your brand voice is crucial to your blog because it lets your audience know who you are, what you stand for, and what you value.
Most readers are looking to support businesses that align with their values. So, if you are trying to increase your brand awareness to help promote a service or product, knowing your brand voice and using it consistently in your blog is crucial to your business’s overall success.
4. Make Sure Your Content Is Achieving Its Intended Purpose
This will vary depending on your blog and audience. However, through editing and proofreading, you can make sure that the content is serving its intended purpose and includes all the necessary features and points. For example, make sure you have a call to action at the end of a blog post, that you’ve included enough links, and that a product or service is described in enough detail so the reader won’t have any questions.
How to Proofread and Edit
There is a difference between how a post and a website are proofread. In this section, we’ll break down how these approaches differ and what to look for.
Proofreading and Editing Blog Content
Content is any article or advertisement published on your blog. Editing and proofreading each piece of content you create and publish on your blog is necessary to establish your blog as a trustable and credible source of information.
When editing content, check for the following:
- The overall structure and flow (use an outline at the pre-writing stage to avoid a longer editing process)
- Each sentence should be clear (aim for shorter sentences of no more than 25 words)
- That the content serves a purpose for the reader (e.g., informs them of a service or product)
- Use of simple language (e.g., use active voice, removing unnecessary prepositional phrases)
- That all facts, stats, figures, and data points are correct and supported
- Your brand voice is present and consistent throughout
When proofreading content, check for the following:
- Spelling mistakes or inconsistencies (e.g., American vs. British spelling)
- Grammar mistakes
- Punctuation mistakes
- Capitalization in titles and headers (i.e., consistent use of title vs. sentence case)
- Formatting and layout inconsistencies
- Word choice (e.g., effect vs. affect, compliment vs. complement)
For more proofreading tips, read this article where you will also find a downloadable proofreading checklist.
Proofreading and Editing Your Blog’s Website
While proofreading and editing your blog’s website, you should still look for the things listed above (e.g., punctuation, structure, and grammar). The main difference is that you need to edit and proofread the text outside of the website in a word processing program. This will help you cut through the formatting and focus on the words.
With your blog’s website, you may need to proofread your landing page, about page, and any other pages you have. While each page should be edited and proofread individually, make sure they are cohesive. This is mainly accomplished through your brand voice and overall writing style.
If you use any images or multimedia on your site, check the captions and subtitles as well. Once you paste the text back into your website, check your formatting and that none of the text has been altered (such as random spacing or missing paragraphs).
Using a Style Guide
Style guides are the secret to fast and efficient editing and proofreading, especially if you have several people maintaining a blog. A style guide is a one-stop shop where all your language uses and preferences are clearly written out. This includes:
- Your tone and brand voice
- Grammar, spelling, and punctuation preferences and usages
- Word choice and usage
- Formatting and layout specs
- Guidelines for different types of content or copy
If you want to learn more about style guides or how to create one for your team, read our full article Top 10 Things to Include in Your Style Guide.
Proofreading and editing your blog and content doesn’t have to be challenging and has many benefits. The main benefit is quality content that will serve your readers and hopefully show at the top of the search engine result pages.
The most important point to remember when running a blog is quality over quantity, especially if you lack the resources or an editorial team to help with proofreading and editing large volumes of content. One piece of well-thought-out and executed content that has been polished with editing and proofreading is always worth more than five pieces of content that are littered with mistakes.
Need Expert Proofreading and Editing Services?
If you need help proofreading and editing content for your blog, leave it to the experts. Proofed has more than 750 editors and has worked with thousands of businesses, helping them proofread and edit articles, reports, case studies, and more. Schedule a call with us today to see what we can do for you.
Are you looking to expand or create your business blog? Check out Creating and Maintaining a Business Blog: A Step-by-Step Guide to learn more.