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It doesn’t matter what you write: fiction, non-fiction, blogs, articles; you name it. Using Grammarly is totally worth it. So, in this article, you will find my review of Grammarly, both the free and premium paid version, as I have used Grammarly premium for quite some time now. I love it, and I think you will too.
What does Grammarly do?
So, first things first: what can you use Grammarly for? Well, as the name indicates, it is a grammar tool designed to help you pick out your spelling and grammatical errors. Here’s an overview of the mistakes it enables you to solve:
- Spelling errors (free version)
- Grammatical errors (free version)
- Punctuation errors (free version)
- Readability issues (paid version)
- Plagiarism problems (paid version)
- Writing tone (paid version)
When it comes to the writing tone and readability, it targets clarity, engagement, and delivery of your writing explicitly. It’s always presented very smoothly, with different color-codings and a metric on the side-line. Just check out the picture below of an example of what that looks like.
How can you use Grammarly?
There are several ways in which you can use Grammarly. They have an online editor where you can upload or paste your files into the dashboard, and then have your text checked. Other options are to use the Chrome browser extension (or browser extensions for other browsers), which I always use. It makes it incredibly easy to check my blog articles while writing them, and then recheck them when I paste them into my WordPress post.
They also have extensions for Microsoft word, Google Docs, and Outlook. I find this especially useful when I have to write more formal emails, when correcting mistakes becomes more important, and when I write articles in word. I also share the scenes for my fiction in Google Drive with my editor, so using Grammarly in Google Docs as an extra check is very useful.
If you use a Mac, the options are slightly more limited, but they have a desktop app. And if you want to use it on your mobile phone, that is also possible, as they have apps for both iOS and Android.
The downside of Grammarly is that it works online, all the time. So you need an internet connection for it to work.
But once you’ve found a way you want to use Grammarly, you can simply start typing. When you make a mistake, it underlines it in red, and then when you hover over the word, it explains the error. If you have the premium version, it also shows you the advanced mistakes, which have more to do with the tone of voice.
One of the cool things on Grammarly is that you can adjust the goal of your document. For instance, you can set the tone of voice from formal to casual and choose different writing domains, such as academic, business, and creative. You can also specify the intent of your story, like to inform, describe, convince, or tell a story, what kind of audience you tell it to, the style, and the emotion you want it to evoke.
Pretty neat, right?
Is Grammarly Premium Worth it?
That is a good question, and the answer is: it depends. It depends on your needs and your budget. The free version is pretty freakin’ great and will find most of your grammar errors. The main difference is that Grammarly Premium comes with a more advanced grammar checker, more adjustment options to help with vocabulary enhancement, and a plagiarism detector.
So, if you’re sure you won’t need those things and think Grammarly Premium is way over your budget, then using the free version will serve you well enough.
So why do I use the premium version?
For one thing, I’m not a native English speaker, and while my English is pretty good, I don’t know it all. Grammarly will tell me when I use certain words too much and gives me synonyms or other word suggestions when they think that word fits better. This has really helped me in expanding my vocabulary and diversifying my writing to make my articles more interesting.
I also find it useful to set my writing goals according to what kind of text I write. The suggestions I get are different, and it helps me find the right voice for the message I want to convey. Whether I’m writing fiction, a blog post, or a more serious article, it always gives me the right kind of suggestions.
Some other things I love about it is that it also tells me when my sentences are too long (which, to be fair, I sometimes ignore), and it gives me detailed information about the type of mistake I made so that I don’t just fix the error but also learn from it. And apparently, it does find and fix more mistakes in the premium, than in the paid version.
What are the costs?
This might be subject to change, but as of now, they have a monthly, quarterly, and annual plan. The monthly plan is $29.95 billed each month, the quarterly plan is $19.98 each month, billed as $59.95 each quarter, and lastly, the annual plan is $11.66 each month, billed as $139.95 annually. So that’s your three options.
They do often have discounts or other types of promotions, so keep an eye out for those if you want the premium version.
Some other FAQs:
Can it exchange a proofreader?
No. While I will say that Grammarly, especially the premium version, takes out most of the mistakes, it can never find all of them. I don’t use proofreaders for my blog posts (which may show), but I wouldn’t count on just Grammarly for, say, publishing my book.
Is Grammarly worth it?
In my opinion: yes. I love using Grammarly and haven’t questioned the decision even once. Even if you don’t want to get the paid premium version, I would also recommend the free version. I believe it will help you write better, and it does get out most of your grammar, spelling, and punctuation mistakes. And you can use it for everything.
Does Grammarly steal your work?
No. They don’t. You transmit your writing to Grammarly’s servers over the internet, so they can’t guarantee 100% security, but they won’t be the ones to steal your work. Using Grammarly is pretty much equivalent to sending a private email. So, if you are writing something commercially or legally sensitive, with strict data management protocols, you probably don’t want to use Grammarly. Otherwise, there shouldn’t be any issues or worries when using Grammarly.
Is Grammarly as good as Turnitin?
I wouldn’t know if it is as good, but it identifies issues and will inform you if your text was plagiarised. In that sense, you have the best of both worlds: a grammar tool and a plagiarism tool.
What about other writing aids?
If you compare Grammarly to ProWritingAid, the premium versions differ somewhat. ProWritingAid doesn’t have limitations or word count restrictions, while Grammarly does (either 100 documents or 50.000 words within 24 hours). This has never been an issue for me since I don’t write that much in a day. But if you’re a company, the numbers might increase fast. That said, Grammarly now does have a separate business option, so things might be different there.
If you’re considering using something like WhiteSmoke, the apparent advantage is that WhiteSmoke has a lot more languages you can use it in. It makes it easier to use for international users, and it is less expensive compared to Grammarly.
That being said, I still prefer Grammarly, perhaps also because now I’m so used to working with it. But if you’re unsure of what you want to use, just try them all out. All these tools should have a free version, so you can compare and see what works best for you.
Will you be using Grammarly?
Do you think you will use Grammarly for your future writing? Or are you already using Grammarly? What are your experiences with it?
In any case, I’d highly recommend that you try out Grammarly, and see for yourself why it’s my preferred grammar tool.