Google's Matt Cutts: Bad Grammar In Comments Doesn't Hurt Your Rankings

Feb 12, 2014 • 8:39 am | comments (15) by twitter Google+ | Filed Under Google Search Engine Optimization

Google GrammarThe other day, Google's Matt Cutts posted a video answering if poor grammar in comments hurts the page's rankings. In short, the answer is no - bad or poor grammar does not hurt your rankings if done in comments.

Here is the video answer:

Now, Matt did add that you should not let spam comments through, implying that those may impact your rankings. He also implied that bad grammar that you write on your own site is a bad thing and you should make sure to use proper grammar. Back in 2011, Matt actually said grammar is not used in the ranking algorithm at all. He said this after Panda launched, by the way.

Here is that video:

Now he does go on to explain that reputable sites do spell better. He also mentioned the reading level feature they launched a while back.

Forum discussion at WebmasterWorld and Twitter.

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Alexander Hemedinger

02/12/2014 02:10 pm

I fully agree that the comments grammar shouldn't play in role in rankings. I think when it's the site and it's content for sure.... Anyways, great read and advice for some who were worried about this.


02/12/2014 03:34 pm

1. only marginals can think, that grammar in comments can affect anything, when the most popular language on the planet Earth is Bad English ; 2. " He also implied that bad grammar that you write on your own site is a bad thing and you should make sure to use proper grammar." No he didn't. Quote : " just make sure that your own content is high quality ". This is not even close to "use proper grammar". I work with real people, writing in real language. You can't even imagine how English language can be different even within same country. It's a nonsense to seek for "proper grammar" on WWW. Just to mention teenagers language or language people use to tweet. Word "google" was considered as poor grammar by same marginals just 10 years ago. Quality is not about grammar. Don't waste your time. Proved by personal experience.

Durant Imboden

02/12/2014 03:41 pm

Good thing, or all the sites that relied on Google Translate for their non-native text would be dead in the water.


02/12/2014 06:49 pm

Just to disregard the content of your reply and be a nitpicking jerk: Google was a real word before Google used it as their name. I think it means 1 followed by 100 just another way to write out 10^100.

Karl-Heinz Müller

02/12/2014 07:40 pm

You mean Googol?


02/12/2014 07:41 pm

The word is - googol. They misspelled it.


02/12/2014 08:19 pm



02/12/2014 09:49 pm

Actually, he did imply that bad grammar on your own site is a bad thing by stating "As long as the grammar on your own page is fine..." - IMPLY being the key word. He didn't actually state that fact, but he did imply it. Personally, I won't stay on a site very long if there is continual bad grammar. An occasional misspelled word or a sentence not quite put together right is no big deal, but yes, quality really does include good grammar. A page that is written with good grammar tells me the author took the time to think about what they were writing, re-read it to check the grammar and probably used spell check to make sure the words were spelled right. So as far as creating a website or blog that is of high quality, I agree with Barry that good grammar really does play an important role.


02/12/2014 10:19 pm

- Imply. As usual. The whole SEO business is based on "imply" ) - well, then obviously you shouldn't visit Web2.0 websites - 90% of the internet. Stick with Britannica. But I doubt you will be able to find there : - manual ( link was provided by nice person, using poor grammar ) ; - recipe ( written by grandma from Alabama ) ; - how to use or to do something ( written in English by plumber from Poland ) ; - where to buy ( suggested by barely English speaking neighbor ) ; - etc etc etc ... Once I received an email from the US University professor, asking why articles, written in Bad English were published. I replied : " Excuse me, but probably you should ask yourself, why Americans can't write properly? " and provided some examples. I'm publisher, not professor. My goal is to provide helpful information, not to teach. And I'm pretty sure you will consider as helpful good recipe, written by barely educated grandma from Alabama ) P.S. Also you have to remember, that English language is the main language to communicate between people with the different native languages. Neither you, nor Google can stop them from sharing information using Bad English. Say 'Thank You' to UK domination couple of the centuries ago )


02/12/2014 10:42 pm

Touche. You are correct, thank you for the correction.


02/12/2014 10:42 pm

Touche for you as well, sir.


02/13/2014 01:59 am

I'm sorry, 0110110100100111011110101, but I don't even understand half of what you wrote here. "Say thank you to UK domination couple of the centuries ago" ? HuH? I'm not saying anyone should stop anyone else "from sharing information using Bad English". Hey no problem. I'm just saying that for those that do so, probably not too many of them will have top ranking websites in Google search. I mean, why would anyone want to try and read something that doesn't make any sense due to bad grammar or bad English? Just sayin'.

Lemuel Wing-Wing Jovellar

02/13/2014 02:50 am

This is just plain logic really as engagement is a part of their algo (as it should be) and if they do have a negative effect, it would be somewhat anti-non-native-english-speakers. After all, the biggest populations on this planet are native English speakers. Not to mention native speakers do commit many errors if you have to do this language by the book given the fact that conversations just don't need to be as "grammatically correct" as business letters should be which is what the comments section like this is.


02/13/2014 03:16 am

Then make an effort to understand before reply. I make an effort to understand your Bad English and expect same respect from you. Otherwise don't talk to me next time. I can afford lack of conversation with you )

Gracious Store

02/15/2014 12:06 am

Just curious! Does Google read every comment on every blog post?

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