Grammar has become an essential yardstick of judgment in today’s writing. It doesn’t matter if you are in content creation or simply write occasional emails, grammar matters everywhere.
Incorrect grammar can come across as unprofessional and can severely impact your business and reputation. That is why most people prefer using Grammar checking software to ensure that all their writing is correct.
But, grammar checking software(s) are not perfect. Many software may not catch contextually incorrect errors in your writing, or some software may offer too many style suggestions that are of no use to you. Lastly, grammatically correct writing is not necessarily readable writing. Grammar checking software that ensures that your readability is also enhanced provides that whatever you write is also easy to understand.
This article evaluates 10 of the most popular grammar checking software in the market. I list down all the features, pricing, availability, and pros & cons of each software so that you can make an informed decision about which software is best for you.
Before I get into that, it is essential to note that grammar checking software behaves differently with different text types. I have done my best to ensure consistency and a fair evaluation of all the software listed here by following the below-written research process.
Table of Contents
Research Process: How I Ensured Unbiased Evaluation
I started by copy-pasting one of the articles on our website into different grammar checking software. I ensured that I use the same content (till point #2) in all the software. I deliberately made contextual, spelling, and punctuation mistakes – and the same ones – in all the software(s).
This way, I could check in one-go if another software misses any detail caught by one software as an error. This process also made the scores and writing analysis reports comparable. I pasted in the plagiarism checkers to identify if it’s tracking the resource to our website.
I either used the web-version or desktop app or both for all of the software listed here.
Before I begin, there are things you should keep in mind when evaluating grammar checking software amongst each other. To know which one will work best for you, you should know the features you value.
Choosing A Grammar Checker: Important Factors
There are some factors that you should consider before you decide on a grammar checking software. Keep these pointers in mind as you evaluate all the software listed here:
- Your Use-Case: What would be the purpose of your grammar checking software? Are you using it to check a non-fiction content you wrote or a fiction book you’re writing, or is it merely to check for emails and other formal communication? Your answer would decide what kind of features you need. If you are writing fiction, a more significant in-depth writing analysis may help you more than signifying ‘goals’ for your writing. But if you are writing only for professional reasons, the ‘goals’ and ‘tone’ feature may be necessary for you.
- Your Frequency of use: If you consider using grammar-checking software for professional reasons, a premium version will suit you best and worth evaluating. But if you are going to use the grammar checking software to check occasional emails, social media captions, then investing in premium plans may not be worth it.
Your Accuracy and Readability Requirement: Do you need your writing to be just grammatically correct, or do you need to enhance its readability to keep your readers engaged? If accuracy is more important to you than styling features, place more emphasis on that while evaluating these software(s). However, if you value style and structure more (or as much as) accuracy, consider evaluating this feature in the grammar checking tools.
Your Availability Requirements: Do you need software that works perfectly on your desktop, and you don’t care if it’s available on your phone? Or are you someone who edits on-the-go and needs an efficient mobile app? Maybe you prefer to write offline and would like software with desktop apps that work without an internet connection.
- Your Budget: Lastly, you should have a budget in mind on how many dollars are you willing to spend on grammar checking software. You can base this on the first four-pointers listed here – whether your requirements and demands from a grammar checking software are high or low.
1. Grammarly: Quick And Straightforward Grammar Correcting Process + Best Plagiarism Checker
Grammarly remains one of the most popular grammar checking software in the market, and for a good reason. Its features fit perfectly well with most of the requirements of any grammar checker software.
Grammarly is one of the most accurate correctors of your grammar, punctuation, and contextual errors. The process is also straightforward and user-friendly. I like how there isn’t too much information in the suggestions – it is short, simple, and digestible.
You also get a quick overall report on your writing that is downloadable as a PDF. This can be useful for a short writing analysis for writers of all genre:
You can choose to set goals on how you want your writing to sound like, and you can also check your writing for plagiarism, which is immensely accurate and quick. You can double click a word to find its synonyms.
There is no persona dictionary feature, or a simple dictionary, or a translator available at Grammarly. This can be troubling for non-native English speakers.
There is a free version of Grammarly that does not offer as many writing suggestions and reports. You can get the Premium version for $29.95/month. You can also try Grammarly business if you are a team using the software. The pricing is done on how many members need a Grammarly account.
Pros and Cons
Accurate grammar checking software
Translator feature not available
Quick and easy-to-use interface
Dictionary not available
Concise suggestions and overall report
Accurate and quick plagiarism checker
2. ProWritingAid: Most In-Depth Writing Analysis
ProWritingAid is a style editor and grammar checker particularly suited for bloggers and content creators.
ProWritingAid remains one of the most accurate grammar checking tools in the market. It highlights every possible grammar mistake, style improvement, and punctuation error.
You can also disable this rule, which can be useful for fiction authors’ character names. Clicking on the orange “i” will also tell you more about the particular suggestion. This can be useful for non-native English writers.
The feature analysis includes a printable summary report, which is my favorite part of the whole software. The only drawback is that it is too long to be a ‘summary’ report. But it can offer you personalized, in-depth analysis of your writing, which can be immensely beneficial.
There is an option of “More Reports” to get even deeper into your writing. There is “Echoes” to tell you which phrases and/or words you overuse in your writing. The whole dashboard is a repository to nitpick your writing’s most delicate details and give you valuable insights.
However, the app can be a little slow, and its user-interface is not the best compared to its competitors.
ProWritingAid has a free version but is limited to word counts. The premium version offers three plans, but this does not include the plagiarism checker. There’s a 14-day guarantee to all the plans.
Pros and Cons
Comprehensive reports and analysis of your writing
It can be a little slow
More significant writing insights available via a repository of articles
Complicated pricing plans
Accurate grammar, punctuation, and spell checking
‘Disable Rule’ feature
Too long “summary” report
3. Whitesmoke: Writing Tutorials And Built-In Templates
Whitesmoke is a grammar checking software that also proofreads your text and offers styling corrections. It is also helpful for writers who don’t have English as their first language.
Whitesmoke has a translator and dictionary for over 50 languages, along with a plagiarism checker. The grammar corrections give you a total score out of 10, examining your sentence length, structure, word choice, etc.
The “activity report” gives you an error summary that only opens on the web and does not work on the application. Overall, the analysis is not as comprehensive as its competitors.
The web-version allows your writing to remain formatted, which is a feature I liked, and I hope it can be incorporated into the application too. You can check the reasons behind a suggestion, which also tells you “How to use” the particular text. This can be helpful for someone who has English as their second language. The “Writing Tutorials” also stand for the same function. There are also many built-in templates for when you quickly want to draft something.
The plagiarism checker is a little slow and inaccurate. It will monitor every single word pasted and give you many results that are inapplicable and useless. Anything that remotely familiar is marked as plagiarism. You can also only check 10,000 characters at a time.
There are three plans and two billing periods available in Whitesmoke. No monthly plans or free versions or trials are available. You can, however, request a cancellation within seven days of purchasing Whitesmoke.
Pros and Cons
Translator of over 50 languages
No monthly plans available
No free version or free trial available
Writing tutorials available
10,000 character limit
“How to use” feature for every error/suggestion
Faulty plagiarism checker
Limited writing analysis
4. Ginger: Add Character Names In Your Personal Dictionary And Reframe Sentences Easily
Ginger Software helps you to check any grammatical or spelling errors in your writing. It also corrects punctuation and offers suggestions for alternative sentence structures.
It is available as an extension in Chrome and Safari, as a Mobile App on iOS and Android, and as a Windows application. Installing my laptop’s application was a bit of a hassle since the installation hanged multiple times, and even merely logging in was a whole task. Despite numerous attempts to install, reinstall, and use the application, nothing worked.
Unable to use the application, I tried to use the web extension. It worked perfectly on Chrome, but it did not work on the Brave browser. It might be something to keep in mind if you don’t use Chrome or Safari.
The Ginger software also has a translator with 60+ languages. Along with that, you can also easily find synonyms of words by double-clicking them or simply search for their meaning in the dictionary.
On examining the browser extension, I found that the grammar and spell-checkers worked but were a little slow compared to other software in the market. It also could not detect that I had misspelled ‘You’ to’Yu.’ This means you might have to proofread your writing again since Ginger can miss these small errors.
There is also a ‘Rephrase’ feature in this software that deserves a special mention. It tells you several different ways to rewrite the same sentence. This can be a useful feature for someone looking to ramp up their writing and use more varied sentences.
Apart from this feature, I also really like the “Personal Dictionary” feature. Here, you can add words that you commonly use for writing purposes (like character names) that appear as mistakes. Highlighting them in your dictionary prevents the software from marking them as mistakes. This would be useful for authors who have a lot of character names embedded in their writing.
The downside to Ginger, apart from its faulty Windows app and the fact that it does not work on Brave browser, is that it does not have a plagiarism detector. And if you want to check for advanced features like subject-verb agreement, it is only available in the paid version.
Ginger offers a free plan with some character and grammar limitations. Apart from advanced Grammar check, the premium version also provides a virtual writing tutor who can provide you with grammar lessons and tests. This can help native speakers tremendously. The translator is also only available in the premium version.
Pros and Cons
Free version available
No translator and advanced grammar checks in the free version
Rephrasing sentences feature
No plagiarism detector
Personal dictionary feature
It may not work in all browsers
Available as an extension, desktop app, mobile app
Application crash in Windows
Translator available for over 60+ languages
May miss common, small spelling errors
Personal virtual writing trainer in the paid version
The limited capacity of free-version
5. Language Tool: Know Your Text Score And Edit Quickly With ‘Picky Mode’
Language Tool is an open-source grammar checking software. Its interface and suggestions are a lot like Grammarly. It offers all the essential grammar corrections, highlights spelling errors, and advanced suggestions. It can be integrated with Google Docs, Microsoft Word, Microsoft Edge, and Libre Office.
Language Tool is an excellent grammar checker and software. It highlights advanced “suggestions” (don’t use different spellings of the same word in one text), common grammatical errors, and spelling mistakes. You can double click a word to know its synonyms. You can also get a word/sentence/synonym count at the bottom.
There is also a “picky mode” feature, which can come in super handy for the times when you just want to quickly proofread your documents for significant errors without nitpicking them for edits. Turn it on, and you will get only absolutely flawed (or changeable) errors in your document.
It also offers to check your text in many different languages (list available here), so it is excellent for multilingual writers. You can also get a quick analysis of your writing and the text you checked by clicking on the “Text Score”:
It also has a “Personal Dictionary” feature available like Ginger.
LanguageTool is free to add as an extension and download in Chrome. However, the free version is limited only to 20,000 characters. If you want to check any more than that, you would have to buy the software’s premium version.
The “For Teams” version would be useful for companies or multiple editors sharing and working on the same writing. If you have more than 20 users, you need to contact LanguageTool for custom pricing.
Pros and Cons
Reliable grammar checking software
Free version limited to 20,000 characters
Picky mode feature
iOS App not available
Quick writing analysis with “Text Score”
The slight learning curve to utilize all the features
Translation for over 20 languages
Need to get the premium version to highlight all the style issues
Personal Dictionary Feature
Can choose to permanently or temporarily save the writing you edit
6. Microsoft Word: Editor Score And Writing Insights
When there was nothing else, there was Microsoft Word. It has a grammar checker, spell corrector, and punctuation checker built into the application.
You can see the spelling errors, grammatical errors highlighted in the document. You can also find synonyms and dictionary meanings of the words by right-clicking on them. There is also an option available to translate certain words or the entire document in over 60 languages.
The premium version also checks for your writing style, gives you in-depth writing insights, and offer premium suggestions to improve your writing. The editor score in the free version only broadly highlights spelling and grammatical errors with no other insight.
Microsoft Word is pretty limited in its features when compared with competitors. It misses many small errors (like spelling “You” as “Yu”) and doesn’t check your writing for cliches or repetitive writing.
Microsoft Word offers a free plan with limited checks on spelling and grammar. The paid version provides you valuable writing insights personalized to your style. There are several other plans of Microsoft apart from the basic ones that you can find here.
Pros and Cons
Free version available
May miss a few small errors in the document
Quick spell and grammar checking
Limited writing insights in the free version
Translator available for over 60 languages
Formatting can be a hassle when you copy-paste
Premium features offer writing suggestions and insights
Pricey plans for the premium version
7. Google Documents: Correct Basic Errors As You Type
Google Documents have inbuilt grammar and spell checker. It can be a perfect tool for editing overlooked spellings and contextually wrong sentences.
Google documents is a basic editor to check for missed spellings, punctuation, and grammar errors. It doesn’t live up to the market competitors to check for cliches, writing style, and premium suggestions. If you want just quickly to proofread your document, though, Google Documents is pretty great.
The best feature that I find in Google Documents is that it automatically corrects your little errors on-the-go. So, you don’t have to wait for it to underline your text and then click on it, check the mistake, correct the error, etc.
Google Documents is free of charge, and all the grammar features work in the free version perfectly. But there are G-Suite Premium plans that you can look into for extra storage. You can also take a free trial for 14 days.
Pros and Cons
Reads into the tiniest of errors
No writing style suggestions available
Corrects your writing on-the-go as you type
No personalized writing style enhancements available
8. Hemingway: Enhance Readability of Your Writing
Hemingway is one of the most reliable grammar checking software in the market and remains extremely beginner-friendly.
Hemingway examines your writing extremely. It highlights your text in multiple color-coded formats with red being hard to read, green being the use of passive voice and blue for poor adverbs. It also highlights how many words are in your document, what is their readability, etc.
You can also switch between ‘writing’ and ‘editing’ to be undistracted by the software’s suggestions.
However, Hemingway does not provide contextual suggestions, synonyms, or dictionary features available in other software on this list.
Hemingway’s web-based editor is free, and the desktop app is downloadable for $19.99.
The application does not offer any new features but is less distracting to work at than a browser.
Pros and Cons
Enhances readability of your writing
Not a sufficient grammar checker tool
Checks for passive voice, hard to read sentences, etc.
Not enough features compared to competitors like synonyms, dictionary
‘Writing’ mode and ‘Editing’ mode makes it easy to focus
Pricey app with no extra features
Free web browser version available
9. SpellCheckPlus: Language Tutorials And Grammar Score
SpellCheckPlus is an unpopular but efficient grammar and spell-checking software. It also highlights your punctuation errors and gives you word form and contextual suggestions.
SpellCheckPlus is quite different in its basic features compared to its competitors. While the suggestions are pretty much the same, the aesthetic and build of the website seem vintage. The speed and accuracy were commendable throughout the editing process.
It also has a feature of giving you a grammar score and a breakdown of all the mistakes and corrections. This can be particularly useful for non-native speakers to recognize common errors.
SpellCheckPlus vocabulary learning tutorials available on their website. Linguistic principles and basic building blocks of a new language are available in this feature.
SpellCheckPlus does not offer any personalized writing style suggestions, a dictionary, a repository of synonyms, and the grammar suggestions can be repetitive (don’t start a sentence with ‘but’) and there’s no place to mark exceptions to the rule if you want it.
SpellCheckPlus is a free tool to use on their website with a limit of 2000 characters at a time. There is a Pro version available at $14.99/year with logged texts, a full-screen editor, no ads, and grammar exercises. Shared licenses, licenses for schools or academicians are also available at custom pricing.
Pros and Cons
Free version available
Personal Dictionary not available
Pro version affordable for new writers
Repetitive errors highlighted – no feature to mark certain cases as exceptions
Language tutorials available
No synonyms feature or dictionary feature
Works only as a web-browser on desktop
10. PaperRater: To Check And Analyze Papers And Get A Printable Report On Your Writing
PaperRater is a web-based application to check for grammar, spelling, and plagiarism. It is made for high-school and college students to check their assignments.
You go to PaperRater’s website and paste your writing. You are required to select a type of writing and the education level of those reading your writing. This feature can be useful for writing informational articles, particularly to a specific educational demographic. But there is no “blog” or “article” available as a type of writing. The options are mostly student-oriented.
And the grammar-checker does not take into account context. While all of the spelling errors and basic grammar errors will be highlighted, a few contextual mistakes might get missed by PaperReader. For example, here, ‘affect’ was overlooked when it should’ve been ‘effect’:
There are also styling suggestions examining your transition words, readability, sentence length, sentence beginnings, passive voice, etc. You can also get a quick snippet analysis of your word choices and vocabulary.
There is a printable report available of all this analysis too. There is also a plagiarism detector, although a little slow. You also cannot find any dictionaries or synonym finder.
PaperRater has a premium version available that offers more plagiarism checks per month, premium modules, faster processing, advanced plagiarism checks, etc.
Pros and Cons
Free version available
May miss certain contextual mistakes
Plagiarism checker available
Mostly suitable only for students
Personalized styling suggestions
No dictionary or synonym feature available
No desktop or mobile app available
After you are done choosing the right grammar checking software for you, see how you can utilize it better, and use its extra features to your advantage.
How To Use A Grammar Checker To Improve Your Writing Quality
Anyone who communicates through writing needs a grammar checker. With the advent of email, that’s all of us. But don’t limit your writing to just grammatically correct, enhance its readability, and improve your writing style. Many of the tools listed here help you do just that. Here are some tips and tricks that you can use to enhance your writing quality through grammar checking software:
- Analyse Your Writing Patterns: Almost all the tools in this list offer a writing analysis of your text. Whichever one you choose, try and identify writing patterns that you are faulty to improve them. This is especially useful for fiction authors. In my opinion, ProWritingAid offers you the most in-depth writing analysis, while Grammarly ensures a digestible amount of information that you can act on for improving your writing.
- Improve Readability of Your Writing: Good writing is not just grammatically correct but easy to grasp and understand. Even if you are not in a profession where writing is paramount, simple enhancements in your readability can make better emails and, thus, more satisfied clients. I speak from experience when I say that all customers appreciate emails that are a breeze to read. Hemingway would be the best readability enhancing software in this list.
- Enhance Your Vocabulary: You might use certain words that can take a replacement not to sound too repetitive. Utilize the synonyms feature available in most of the software here and enhance the word choices you make.
- Utilise Writing Tutorials: The repository of grammar and style enhancements articles in these software(s) can immensely help you improve your writing. Especially if English is your second language, use this knowledge to your advantage. Whitesmoke and ProWritingAid have some of the most straightforward and most accessible writing repositories.
Frequently Asked Questions About Best Grammar Checker
What is grammar checker software?
A grammar checker software checks and highlights grammatical mistakes in your writing. It uses several rules to detect errors like agreement in tense, spelling mistakes, punctuation, etc.
Who needs a spelling or grammar checker?
Anyone who writes frequently or occasionally in their jobs should use a spelling and grammar checker. It helps you highlight common errors and fix them faster. It is best to hire a proofreader for longer articles.
What is the best free grammar checker?
Grammarly remains one of the most popular grammar checking software in the market. Its free version enables you to check your writing for grammatical mistakes and spelling errors. Good alternatives are ProWritingAid and Whitesmoke.
Can grammar checkers work offline?
Most grammar checker software(s) require an internet connection to check your text for common grammatical errors. However, the app version of Hemingway software works offline too.
Is a grammar checker safe to use?
There are many grammar checking software out there in the market, but the most popular ones remain Grammarly, ProWritingAid, Hemingway, and Whitesmoke. Hemingway would be perfect if what you value most is the readability of writing. Whitesmoke is ideal for non-native English speakers. ProWritingAid suits fiction authors best. And Grammarly is perfect for non-fiction, social media, and other formal communication writing. Complement one with the other, or just stick to one – whatever suits your boat.
Hopefully, this article has helped you find the best grammar checking software for your needs. Let me know in the comments below if there’s any particular software you like best and why.