Thursday, July 14, 2011

Spelling mistakes 'cost millions' in lost online sales

BBC Website by Sean Coughlan 14 July 2011

Online entrepreneur Charles Duncombe says that poor spelling is costing the UK millions of pounds in lost revenue and that a single spelling mistake can cut online sales in half.

He says he measured the revenue per visitor to the website and found that the revenue was twice as high after an error was corrected.

"If you project this across the whole of internet retail then millions of pounds worth of business is probably being lost each week due to simple spelling mistakes," says Mr Duncombe, director of the Just Say Please group.

Spelling is important to the credibility of a website, he says. When there are underlying concerns about fraud and safety, then getting the basics right is essential.

When a consumer might be wary of spam or phishing efforts, a misspelt word could be a killer issue”

William Dutton Oxford Internet Institute

"You get about six seconds to capture the attention on a website."

Spelling and grammar are not so important on informal parts of the internet, such as Facebook. However, home pages or commercial offerings that are not among friends and mistakes raise concerns over trust and credibility.

Figures from the Office for National Statistics published last month showed internet sales in the UK running at £527m per week.

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