As a copy editor, it is important to understand the rules of plural verb agreement to ensure that the content produced not only sounds professional but also ranks well on search engines. Proper grammar is an essential component of search engine optimization (SEO) because poorly written content can negatively impact a website’s ranking. In this article, we will discuss plural verb agreement rules and how they affect SEO.
The basic rule of plural verb agreement is that a plural subject requires a plural verb, while a singular subject requires a singular verb. However, there are some exceptions to this rule. Let us take a closer look.
1. Compound subjects: When two or more singular nouns are joined by “and”, the subject becomes plural. Therefore, the verb also needs to be plural. For example, “The cat and the dog are playing in the yard.”
2. Indefinite pronouns: Indefinite pronouns such as “everyone”, “everything”, “somebody”, and “anyone” are always singular. Therefore, singular verbs are used with them. For example, “Everyone is here.”
3. Collective nouns: Collective nouns refer to groups of people or things such as “team”, “family”, “herd”, and “audience”. They can be treated as singular or plural depending on the context. In American English, collective nouns are usually treated as singular, while in British English, they may be treated as either singular or plural. For example, “The team is practicing” (American English) or “The team are practicing” (British English).
4. Fractions: Fractions such as “one-third”, “half”, and “two-thirds” are singular when they are used as a single unit. For example, “One-third of the cake is missing.” However, when they are used as separate units, a plural verb should be used. For example, “Two-thirds of the students are absent.”
5. Titles: When a title or a name is used as a subject, it is considered singular. For example, “The book by J.K. Rowling is a bestseller.”
Proper plural verb agreement is essential for good writing, and it is also important for SEO. Search engines like Google prefer well-written content with proper grammar and sentence structure. Content that is easy to read and understand is more likely to rank higher on search engine results pages. Therefore, as a copy editor, it is crucial to ensure that content has proper plural verb agreement as it can affect a website`s ranking.
In conclusion, understanding plural verb agreement rules is crucial for producing high-quality content that ranks well on search engines. Whether it’s compound subjects, collective nouns, indefinite pronouns, fractions, or titles, following these rules is essential for proper grammar and sentence structure. By keeping these rules in mind, a copy editor can produce error-free content that is not only easy to read but also ranks well on search engine results pages.