Imagine a proofreader at work. What are they working on? Most people would picture them working on a novel. Perhaps, if you write non-fiction books, you might be imagining them with their nose in a history manuscript, a biography or a recipe book. Very few people would envisage someone proofreading a website. But your website is your ‘shop window’ to the world, and it’s vital to get it right and show yourself – and your business – to its best advantage.
I do a lot of website proofreading, copy-editing and even copy-writing, and it gives me a huge amount of satisfaction to give a site the final polish that sets it apart from its competitors.
If you run a small or medium sized business, its particularly important to pay close attention to your website and invest in making it as good as possible. If your potential client has to choose between you and your main competitor, the professionalism of your website will influence them. If your website is peppered with spelling mistakes and your rival’s isn’t… well, it makes you look bad. Unfairly so, because less-than-perfect spelling doesn’t mean you can’t do your job. (Don’t get me on my soapbox about people who get all Judgey McJudgeypants over spelling and grammar! That’s a blog post for another day.)
If you’re an author, it’s essential to make sure your website copy is perfect. Although writers work with words, I’m a big believer in the principle that a writer’s strength is their imagination. Not all writers can spell, but they can create characters and worlds. I can spell like a… like a dictionary, but that’s just the grunt work; it doesn’t mean I can write a novel! (Disclaimer: I’ve never tried, but I strongly suspect it would be rubbish.)
If you’re a self-published author, your website is one of the most important tools to sell your books and you don’t have a publishing company looking over your shoulder and polishing the copy. I strongly recommend that you invest in a website ‘proof-edit’ to make sure your unique voice comes across as strongly as possible.
Not everyone who advertises proofreading or editing services works on websites. It’s a different skill from proofreading a leaflet, article or book. I’ve been proofreading and editing websites for twelve years and writing web copy for six years. If you’d like a fresh pair of eyes looking at your site, don’t hesitate to get in touch. It’s a small investment that could pay off big time if it helps you land that crucial new client.