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Common Mistakes in Web Writing

Web writers might fall prey to some of the same mistakes common to those who write for traditional print media, but there are also some errors that are unique to the virtual world. The following is a summary of some of errors frequently made by web writers that may pertain strictly to online writers as well as those that are more general.

Poor Spelling and Grammar

This is a universal problem so it is not limited to web writers. Poor spelling and grammar makes a writer look unprofessional but more importantly it paints an unflattering picture of their capability and their work ethic. This may sound a bit dramatic but it is no exaggeration. The truth is that a badly spelt word or an ill-phrased sentence can put a blemish on your career as a writer, so it is important to take the extra step to proof-read and edit everything before you submit it into cyberspace. The ease of self publishing can tempt writers to throw caution to the wind, but failing to check your work before you submit can cast a shadow on your reputation as a writer.

Poor Formatting

Internet readers prefer writing that is evenly spaced and broken down into manageable chunks. The printed word may be able to get away with longer paragraphs and less page breaks but those seeking information on the web are a bit more discriminating. They need to have their ideas separated for easy processing and writing that subscribes to this formula usually does a lot better.

Lack of Keywords

Writing for the internet has introduced a special requirement in the need to have keyword enriched text. Since users search the internet for specific information your content must be written so that it can be easily referenced by search engines. This is done by sprinkling the right keywords throughout the body of the work and can be further enhanced by appropriate titles and even properly chosen images or pictures.

Failure to Get to the Point

Internet readers are also not looking for too much fiction. While creative work does have a niche on the net for the most part users are looking for fact based information. They may appreciate articles that are pithy but they prize brevity above the ability to be snarky at all times. The web reader ideally wants to get a dose of appropriate humor, commentary and facts all rolled into a concise and grammatically correct article. If writers ramble on and lose focus they will also lose their readers.

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Kasman wrote on November 7, 2014, 3:31 PM

I agree with you but as for the last one it is possible to write in different styles. Serious for factual posts (but not necessarily brief since some information will take a bit of explaining) and more lyrical for personal stuff.

Feisty56 wrote on November 7, 2014, 5:01 PM

With attention spans even of adults becoming shorter all the time. I wouldn't be surprised to be reduced to writing, "See Spot run."

OldRoadsOnceTraveled wrote on November 7, 2014, 11:23 PM

Before I started writing online, most of my writing was fiction, and I could get pretty wordy at times. Social blogging may not be considered serious writing, but one thing it taught me (and quickly) was how to keep things short and sweet.

Lemark wrote on November 8, 2014, 1:39 PM

I agree with you - more or less - on all five points.

I would add. maybe under 'Poor grammar', to keep you sentences short and understandable. This is my weak spot. My native language, Slovenian, has a wonderful grammatical structure of subsentences, divided by commas. The result can be a longish sentence. In English this approach doesn't look too good :)

scheng1 wrote on December 29, 2014, 7:29 AM

Lack of keywords is a main reason for low views.