Here are some funny examples of grammar mistakes I turned up whilst browsing the evil web (in no particular order):
- “It takes many ingredients to make Burger King great but, the secret ingredient is our people.” Personally, I always wondered what made their burgers so irresistible.
- “Toilet out of order, please use floor below.”
- “Automatic washing machines. Please remove all your clothes when the light goes out.”
- “Elephants Please Stay In Your Car.” A warning at a safari park.
- “Would the person who took the step ladder yesterday please bring it back or further steps will be taken.” This appeared on an office notice board.
- “Don't let worries kill you, let the church help.”
- “Slow Children Crossing.” Comma tomfoolery.
- "Goat Cheese Salad ... tomato, onions, goat cheese" becomes something less vegetarian friendly with a couple of extra s's and an erroneous additional comma: "Goats Cheese Salad ... tomatoes, onions, goats, cheese."
- My personal favourite appeared in the Times, and was intended as a brief description of a Peter Ustinov documentary: “"highlights of his global tour include encounters with Nelson Mandela, an 800-year-old demigod and a dildo collector".
But they’re not so funny for your business
I know, OK, I said ten and I’m going to deliver on that promise. Number ten is an example of a solicitor’s page title – as in, the sentence that appears in big blue letters on Google SERPs when potential clients are searching for your business:
Here's number ten: “Solicitor to Sue for Psychological, Sexual and Physical Abuse Claims, UK”.
Perhaps if clients are hoping to sue a solicitor they’ll click on this result, but otherwise they’re probably going to migrate to better-worded competitors.
It’s a prime example of why it is so important businesses invest time in proofreading their work before it goes live on the net, where millions of people can laugh at it and ignore their business until the end of time.
Don’t become a laughing stock
With so many people calling traditional spelling, punctuation and grammar outmoded and useless, the above examples hopefully demonstrate how important it still is. A well worded page title or opening sentence costs nothing but time and a little research. Conversely, a poorly worded and grammatically incorrect advertisement for your business could cost you a great deal of customers.
Don’t become a laughing stock, take some time and get it right.