What Google’s John Mueller Has To Say About Ranking Impact Due To Poor HTML, Grammar and Spelling

Google’s John Mueller shed some light on how poor HTML, grammar, and spelling can impact the search rankings. Here is what the search advocate had to say about its impact on user experience (UX).


Broken HTML Impacts Search Rankings

Many concerns were raised about how broken HTML can impact search rankings, so Mueller took a minute to contemplate the question and said this depends upon a number of factors, as it is a technical issue.

Though, for the most part, Google pays little heed to whether or not the HTML is broken. In fact, he clears that a large portion of the web doesn’t even have valid HTML. Yet, there are times when it can indeed affect the search rankings, so it counts as a major factor in improving user experience.


When Does Broken HTML Impact Search Rankings?

If the HTML is badly broken, then it may adversely affect the rankings. The search engine needs to know if HTML is mobile-friendly. Other exceptions include when Google is not able to distinguish the title from the heading and body. This is a sign of terribly broken HTML and can make things tricky for Google.

When an HTML page fails to load properly, we can tell if it is badly broken. If it loads without an issue and the page looks fine, there’s probably nothing to worry about.


Poor Spelling and Grammar Impact Search Rankings

After addressing the previous concerns, Mueller’s attention was drawn to the impact of poor spelling and grammar on search engine rankings. He categorizes these concerns to be quality-related issues, which are of considerable importance from the reader’s perspective.

Again, it could depend on a number of factors, but primarily, if the content of a page is incoherent to the viewers due to spelling and grammar mistakes, the quality of the page would drop and eventually affect its ranking on Google.


When Does Spelling and Grammar Impact Search Rankings?

The spelling and grammar can impact the search rankings if Google fails to comprehend what the page is all about. That can only happen when the search engine cannot understand the text because of the abundance of spelling and grammar mistakes.

Moreover, such errors can also have a detrimental impact on the overall quality of the website. It can lower the quality immensely, which leads to a lower ranking. To that end, Mueller confessed that certain websites should prioritize grammar and spelling accuracy over HTML. In the broader scheme of things, though, both should be given attention.



A broken HTML page and poor grammar and spelling are too bad for search rankings, though, on different levels. For instance, the HTML has to be incomprehensible to Google before it can have negative consequences. If the title, headings, and content are indistinguishable, it could most certainly have complications.

Grammar and spelling errors, on the other hand, can impact the user experience, leading to the poor quality of the page. Mueller suggested testing the web page on a browser to know if it needs fixing or not.