A new study has revealed that 59 per cent of Britons would not use a company that had obvious grammatical or spelling mistakes on its website or marketing material, and 82 per cent would not use a company that had not correctly translated its material into English.
The research, conducted by Global Lingo, polled 1,029 UK adults on their online purchasing and browsing habits.
Those taking part were asked whether or not they tended to notice the quality of spelling or grammar or a company’s website 74 per cent said yes.
When asked whether bad grammar or obvious spelling errors would stop them buying from the website, 59 per cent said it would, with the majority claiming that they “wouldn’t trust” the company to provide a good quality service. Others would be put off due to an obvious lack of care, or would consider the company to be unprofessional.
“The fact that such a high percentage wouldn’t trust a company with poor spelling or grammar just goes to show crucial it is that businesses make the most of every opportunity, especially in these tough economic times,” says Richard Michie, marketing and technology director at Global Lingo.
“You only have a short amount of time to make an impression on a potential customer, and if your website or ad is riddled with grammatical errors, it’s not going to place you in a favourable light. Competition is tough, and if you don’t take the care to present yourself in as professional a light as possible, you may well be losing yourself important business.”
When consumers were asked if they had ever come across a website that was clearly translated from a foreign website into English, which then read inadequately with bad grammatical mistakes, 31 per cent of individuals admitted that this had indeed happened to them. But the impact is dramatic: just 4 per cent of this number then continued to use the website or purchase goods from it.
This works both ways, so if you are doing business internationally, ensure that your foreign-language website is mistake-free.
This is particularly true for finance-related websites designed to help people in difficult credit-related situations, such as those looking for a bad credit mortgages. Whilst a lot of companies are honourable and adhere to codes of practice there are some who indeed set out to scam innocent victims. Poor grammar on a website is usually a sign that a company probably should not be trusted, particularly when it comes to parting with money.
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See our post on OTE (On Target earnings)