As a copy editor with experience in SEO, one of the most common mistakes that writers make is the use of a verb that is not in agreement with its subject. This error can make even the most well-written piece of content unreadable, and it can negatively impact your search engine rankings.

The basic rule of subject-verb agreement is that a singular subject requires a singular verb, and a plural subject requires a plural verb. For example, “The cat is sleeping” and “The cats are sleeping” are both correct, but “The cat are sleeping” is incorrect.

One of the most common reasons for this error is that the subject and verb are too far apart in the sentence, causing the writer to lose track of the agreement. To avoid this, it`s important to keep the subject and verb close together in your writing.

Another common mistake is when the subject is a collective noun, such as “team” or “group,” and the writer uses a singular verb instead of a plural verb. For example, “The team is playing well” is correct, but “The team are playing well” is not.

To avoid this mistake, it`s important to remember that a collective noun can be singular or plural, depending on the context of the sentence. If the collective noun is acting as a single entity, use a singular verb. If the members of the collective noun are acting as individuals, use a plural verb.

In addition to these common mistakes, there are also some irregular verbs that can cause confusion. For instance, “have” is an irregular verb that does not follow the usual subject-verb agreement rules. For example, “I have a book” is correct, but “I has a book” is not.

To avoid these errors, it`s important to be familiar with the irregular verbs and their correct usage. It`s also helpful to use a grammar checker tool or seek the services of a professional copy editor to ensure that your writing is error-free.

In conclusion, subject-verb agreement is a crucial aspect of writing that cannot be overlooked. Using a verb that is not in agreement with the subject can result in an incomprehensible and poorly written piece of content that will negatively impact your SEO rankings. By paying attention to this aspect of writing and taking the necessary steps to avoid common mistakes, you can ensure that your content is clear, concise, and easily understood by your readers.