We have already established how important accurate spelling is to the success of your website in ‘Five Reasons Why You Need To Spell Correctly On Your Website’. Proofreading is a labour-intensive task though, and it can be difficult to find every error on your site. Fortunately, there are now some spell checking tools available online, so I tried a few to see what functions they offered and how the free tools faired against the paid tools.
Typosaurus is one of the most commonly referenced and promoted website spell checkers. Its biggest selling point is its simplicity – there are no settings to adjust, and it consists of a single search bar into which you can enter up to 10 web pages for scanning. On the surface this seems like a good function, but this can actually become extremely laborious if you have a site with 50, 100 or even more pages.
After hitting the ‘scan’ button, the results are returned quickly and simply. It lists each URL that you entered on a separate line, and each line will display a red box containing the number of errors that have been detected.
Clicking this will then display a list of the possible misspellings that it has found and the suggested corrections next to the highlighted errors. It does not show you where the errors are located on the page you have scanned. The results were mixed. I found a lot of HTML tags appearing in the results along with jargon words that are perfectly valid and not mistakes at all. As there is no reference to where the error occurs on the page, having to rely on search and replace could still result in mistakes being overlooked during the updating of the page.
All results are returned according to American English, and there is no setting to change the region. Although there is a link for a Chrome extension on the landing page, I was not able to test its functionality because it would not download for me (and I tried on multiple browsers). There may be more options available if using this extension, but unfortunately, I cannot confirm this.
This Spell Check Tool is another free and simple to use web-based application that allows you to choose between entering your URL into a search bar, pasting the text you want to check, or uploading a document for scanning.
The scan results are presented very clearly. If you have chosen to crawl your entire website, it lists the URL of each page that has been scanned and provides you with a ‘Possible Misspellings’ number. Clicking this populates another page showing the relevant scanned text with the possible errors highlighted in red. This is an improvement over the functionality of Typosaurus, however, as you only get a text representation of your page it’s hard to match up where the mistake is on your site when you have lots of dynamic content which could be hidden from view. This means that, again, you are left with search and replace.
This tool is also limited to American English. It can only be run five times per day by the same user, and it cannot detect errors within words containing capital letters, or words that contain special characters or numbers. As the results are only presented on the website, it’s not really possible to share the results unless you have created multiple PDF’s for each page.
C3 Software offers a premium paid-for service called websitespellchecker.com. After choosing the package that suits you (a one-off scan package is priced no more than a couple of beers), you receive an email from one of their team members to say hello and to confirm that they will be scanning your site and providing with an estimated time when you should receive your first report usually within a business day.
Once they have scanned your website and reviewed the results, you will receive a detailed professionally presented PDF report identifying all visible spelling errors, as well as possible misspellings that may be hidden in the background HTML text and metadata.
The report identifies the URL for each page containing an error, accompanied by a snapshot of the text from the relevant page with the error highlighted. Alternative words are suggested to replace the mistakes, and the report is organised to display the pages with the most visible errors first.
With a complete PDF report being provided, everyone from management to developer can see the overall quality of the site’s content. This is a clear advantage over online tools, which tend to be used by developers and hidden from management.
One thing I liked is that every page is scanned, and even if there are no mistakes on the page it’s still included in the report, therefore omitting the question of whether it was scanned or not.
A fantastic follow-up service is also included with your websitespellchecker.com package. After correcting the errors identified in your personalised report, you can login to the management studio and request a rescan completely free of charge, this is perfect to determine if all the spelling mistakes have been rectified.
Like most things, it all comes down to personal preferences and individual needs. Obviously, the advantage of free services is that they don’t cost you anything but they can be laborious, time consuming and difficult to share results. For most people they get the job done and can definitely be of assistance, but they tend to lack complete reliability and are often limited in how much customisation is offered.
For the price of a quick lunch, a paid spell checking service provides a level of personalisation and reliability that you just don’t get with the free options. You are allocated to an actual staff member who can answer your questions and clarify details, you receive a detailed report which is clear and easy to understand, and you can share the report with staff members, web developers and whoever else you like.
You also have the peace of mind that your site has been scanned and reviewed thoroughly, and that any errors are going to be found are meaningful and can be quickly rectified.
If you would like to make an enquiry regarding any of the services that they provide, pricing information or any other details that could assist you with your website and SEO optimisation, you can contact C3 Software today at https://www.c3software.co.uk/ or https://www.websitespellchecker.com and one of their friendly team will be only too happy to assist you.
Scott Duncan is a freelance writer who enjoys creating content of all varieties, whether it be technical articles, product descriptions and reviews, blog posts, creative writing and more. He has a degree in Sociology, and after graduating from university, worked in Japan for 10 years as an English instructor. Following that, he worked in the law courts in a variety of roles, the bulk of which was with the transcripts team. He loves Japan, basketball, music and gaming (including a long-running obsession with the Destiny franchise).