As a copy editor, one of the most common grammatical errors I come across is incorrect verb agreement. This can happen for a variety of reasons, from subject-verb disagreement to issues with tense and voice. But what exactly is verb agreement, and why is it so important for SEO?
Verb agreement refers to the grammatical rule that the form of a verb must agree with its subject in number and person. In simpler terms, this means that if the subject of a sentence is singular, the verb should be in the singular form. If the subject is plural, the verb should be in the plural form. This helps ensure that sentences are clear, logical, and easy to read and understand.
Why is this important for SEO? Well, search engines like Google use complex algorithms to crawl and index web pages. These algorithms look for high-quality content that is relevant, clear, and well-written. If your content contains grammatical errors like incorrect verb agreement, it can lower the quality score of your page and ultimately affect your search engine rankings.
Here are some common examples of verb agreement errors and how to fix them:
1. Subject-verb disagreement: This occurs when the subject and verb don`t match in terms of number. For example, “The book on the shelf are mine” should be “The book on the shelf is mine” because “book” is singular.
2. Tense inconsistency: This happens when the verb tense in a sentence doesn`t match the tense used elsewhere in the paragraph or article. For instance, “I walked to the store yesterday. Today, I am eating pizza” should be “I walked to the store yesterday. Today, I am eating pizza” because “walked” is past tense and “am eating” is present tense.
3. Passive voice: This occurs when the subject of a sentence is receiving the action, rather than performing it. For example, “The ball was thrown by John” should be “John threw the ball” because the first sentence is in passive voice, which can make it confusing and less engaging for readers.
By paying close attention to verb agreement, you can improve the quality and readability of your content, which can in turn help boost your search engine rankings. Take the time to proofread your writing carefully, and consider working with a professional copy editor who can help you catch and correct errors before you publish your content online.