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Grammar Queen’s Guide to Website Editing

I have been correcting people’s grammar since I was a kid, and I turned this annoying habit into a career. Editing is one of my favorite things to do. Previously, while working as a newspaper editor, I edited hundreds of news briefs and newspaper articles every week. Editing became so natural that I edited in my sleep. Lest you think I was sleeping on the job, let me explain. Sometimes, I’d wake up at night, dreaming that I am writing and editing the news. Proofreading certainly comes easily to me.

4 Website Editing Options

So, when a client asked me to edit her webpages, I jumped at the chance. But first, we had to agree upon terms. Essentially, I needed to know the type of editing to do. Thus, I gave her four options:

  1. Proofread and edit for grammar and sentence structure
  2. Style and format for consistency and readability (For example, some pages have multiple fonts.)
  3. Reword from a customer’s perspective (I wrote a marketing blog about this.)
  4. Reword for Search Engine Optimization (SEO) by using keywords in text, headings and subheadings

Content Marketing Solutions

My client requested all of the above. Here’s why:

  • Webpages need to be free of grammatical and spelling errors. Essentially, organizations lose credibility with their audience if their webpages contain errors.
  • Webpages also need to be inviting, designed with a clean and fluid layout that attracts the eye and encourages browsing.
  • Websites that are easy to read keep visitors engaged, making them more likely to act. Readability requires short sentences, active voice, and conversational writing.
  • Website content needs to be client-focused, telling the client’s story, addressing the client’s concerns, and offering a solution.
  • Search engines like Google crawl and index the internet. The keywords on websites match the search terms that users type into a search bar, and text allows search engines to show the website on a results page.

Search Engine Optimization (SEO)

Both text and images tell a story, but search engines read text only, not images. My client’s Home page showed a banner image with text written within the image. Although the text looked appealing and included keywords, the text wasn’t searchable. The bots indexing the internet read this as an image only, ignoring the keywords inside. Therefore, for the best results, keywords should be published as text separate from images. Additionally, images should have alt text. Alt text is a written description of what is depicted in a photo. This text allows search engines to crawl and rank a website while also assisting visually impaired readers understand what’s displayed on a webpage.

Proofreading & Editing Webpages

Proofreading and editing webpages are more complex skills than they seem at first glance. That’s why it helps to work with a content marketing professional with years of editing experience. Contact me today to get started.

To read more about website writing and content marketing, visit How to Write a Wicked Webpage.

Joan, Bill and Will Koehne

Mother’s Day 2022 Lesson: Be There for Your Kids

Will's Birthday in Madison with Joan and Bill

Call it a mother’s intuition. It never failed that I was up just shy of 1 a.m. to see our son, Will, walk through the door on his visits home from Atlanta. He’d pull into the driveway after the 15-hour drive to Wisconsin, and I was there to welcome him home.

When Will arrived home in June, I was nowhere to be found. He was surprised by my absence, and he certainly let me know it! I didn’t realize how much it meant to be there for him. I should know better by now. You’re never too old to be loved by your mom.

Talking about age, I look at Will sometimes and wonder. How can this 30-year-old man be my son? I can still picture him as a baby in my arms. The 1 a.m. feedings when he was a baby lacked the welcome-home excitement that his cross-country road trips created. Instead, the middle-of-the-night meetings were exhausting, but a rite of passage nonetheless.

Will Moves to Madison

Nowadays, Will arrives home at a decent hour. He moved to Madison in May 2021 after 4 years in Atlanta and 2 years in Philadelphia during the travel-restricted COVID-19 years. 

Finally, one of our birdies flew closer to the nest! I remember Will opening Christmas gifts during a video call. Sure, it was the next best thing to being together in person, but a poor substitute. Now, Will attends all of the holiday gatherings, with a few extra visits thrown in. Plus, I get to visit him in Madison. We’ve gone to the Milwaukee Brewers game on Star Wars Night, walked to the Governor’s Mansion from his apartment, and toured Olbrich Botanical Garden. I met his girlfriend, Jenny, and I look forward to getting to know her. I bet she’s willing to wake up at 1 a.m. to greet him after a long absence.

So, what about the other birdie that flew the coop? Our daughter, Janet, and her husband, Tyler, are feathering their nest in Mellen and getting more comfortable in the home they purchased in the fall of 2019. Last week they planted two apple trees and ordered a weeping willow. It’s pretty obvious that they put down roots. Mellen, home of the Granite Diggers, is a Northern Wisconsin community where the people are friendly, the snow is deep, and the moon is bright. Needless to say, they like it Up North. Visiting their nest takes more time and more gasoline, but it’s worth it. It keeps my mothering instincts sharp.

This Mother’s Day I’m welcoming a new mom to the club! I just got a text message from my sister, Sue, the newest Marcks girl to become a grandma. 

Congratulations to all of the moms celebrating Mother’s Day, whether it’s your first, 30th or something even grander. Whatever your age and whatever the hour, always be there for your kids. It means more to them than you realize. To read last year’s Mother’s Day reflection, go to Mother’s Day 2021: Selfies & Family Movies