Digital Transformation

Entrepreneur says that spelling mistakes 'cost millions' in lost online sales

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By The Drum Team | Staff Writer

July 15, 2011 | 3 min read

Online entrepreneur Charles Duncombe has claimed that poor spelling is costing the UK millions of pounds in lost revenue for internet businesses.

Duncombe has said that an analysis of website figures has shown a single spelling mistake can cut online sales in half.

Duncombe highlighted the problem, which he has found while recruiting staff, that he has been "shocked at the poor quality of written English" and contends that the big problem for online firms isn't technology but finding staff who can spell.

These concerns were echoed by the CBI whose head of education and skills warned that too many employers had to invest in remedial literacy lessons for their staff.

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Speaking to BBC News, Duncombe said that poor spelling was a serious problem for the online economy and that it may mean that the sector is not as efficient as it could be.

Said Duncombe: "I know that industry bemoaning the education system is nothing new but it is becoming more and more of a problem with more companies going online.

"This is because when you sell or communicate on the internet 99% of the time it is done by the written word."

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