April 8th, 2007

SEO Tip: Spell it Right

I strongly believe that one’s ability to search or browse the Internet can be hindered by their failure to spell words correctly. No wonder domaineers are filthy rich. So many people in the world can’t spell!

Take for example this query made in my search engine:

Initial query:


Follow-up query:

Freindster pics


Freindster pictures

Freindster freinds

I doubt the poor guy found what he was looking for. Misspellings such as this (freind) are more commonplace than you think. About 10% of all search queries are misspelled. That’s why Friendster, like it should be spelled, also bought the domain Freindster.com before them domaineers can snap it up. I have read here and there that optimizing for wrongly-spelled words may also improve traffic, but I tend to disagree. It may increase traffic but definitely not improve it. One of the things I look at in sites such as blogs is the credibility of the writer. Are his posts useful? Do his posts help me make a good decision? Does he spellcheck before publishing?

I go OC (obsessive-compulsive) when it comes to correct grammar and spelling. And I do beat myself up every now and then when I see errors in my posts. While reading a blog, misspellings are like potholes on a road. If you’ve bumped into too many already, you never come back.

In SEO, practicing correct spelling is a plain and basic given. If you’re positioning yourself for a certain keyword, having everything spelled correctly helps to define the semantics of a webpage. Inserting a misspelled word, whether accidentally or deliberately, reduces the relevance of your content and thereby pulling down its search engine rankings. But then again, it all boils down to the credibility issue. Google’s new Agent Rank puts importance on the reputation of the author rather than content alone.

From Google’s patent application for Agent Rank:

When all content from a resource is under the control of a single agent, the reputation of the agent can be directly related to the content of that resource … Identifying individual agents responsible for content can be used to influence search ratings (and) the identity of agents can be reliably associated with content.

That is why I encourage you to proofread before publishing a blog post. You can ask anyone around you to do it, or a couple of friends over IM.

On a side note, I heard from Janette Toral that one of her latest members at Digital Filipino is a company who is recently positioning itself as Singapore’s Top SEO.

This is a sponsored post from Digital Filipino Club.

Posted in SEO, Sponsors

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