Grammarly Premium is an entirely different proposition from the free version. It doesn’t matter if you’re a writer or not; this nifty tool can honestly make a difference. The key to using it successfully is remembering that tools are only useful if employed correctly. Learn more.
April 15, 2021•
Grammarly isn’t an unfamiliar brand to me. I had to assess it sometime back – the outcome of which wasn’t entirely favorable. But before you close this page in disgust, there is a good reason for that.
My opinion has changed in many ways, and this Grammarly review will let you know all the pros and cons of this grammar checker.
Pros of Grammarly
Cons of Grammarly
Grammarly Plans & Pricing
How Does Grammarly Compare to the Competition?
Before we look more deeply into Grammarly, let’s consider some background. Grammarly Premium is the paid version of an AI-based assistant that helps your correct text. It tells you what it thinks is wrong with your writing and offers suggestions on correcting it.
Grammarly was founded by the trio of Max Lytvyn, Alex Shevchenko, and Dmytro Lider. They wanted to help people communicate more effectively – a great idea since a missing apostrophe in the wrong context could lead to so many potential problems.
Since the service aims to support something that’s very general and in widespread use, Grammarly can realistically be used in multiple contexts. For example, wording formal business documents, simple emails, or even for something as short as a notice.
There’s no need for concern if you think Grammarly Premium won’t be available for your specific needs. You can use it almost anywhere, and it’s very convenient. Aside from their web-based service, Grammarly Premium integrates with;
I’ve found that using it as a browser extension is the most useful since it makes the experience a lot smoother. It blends well for me as I mainly work with Google Docs. However, as you can see, if your workflow isn’t the same, there likely won’t be any issues.
So far, I’ve covered some advantages of Grammarly in general, but I’m sure many of you will ask if Grammarly Premium is worth it. To me, the answer would be a resounding YES. Even though I’m a writer and editor, I’m also human.
Grammarly helps me more easily catch errors that might sometimes have slipped through the cracks. The key to this is that I’m using Grammarly Business. This version is in many ways similar to Grammarly Premium.
The free version of Grammarly will check for many things, but aside from giving some hints, it acts mainly as a glorified spell-checker. Grammarly Premium, on the other hand, is more comprehensive.
Grammarly Premium offers suggestions instead of just underlining sections of text and giving you hints through color codes. For those of us who aren’t writers, this can be of great help. Why spend time wondering what went wrong when you can just fix it with a click?
Before we dive further into the review, I want you to know that you don’t have just to take my word on things. Grammarly comes in a few variants, one of which is entirely free. That’s right; it is gratis for life.
The difference is that it comes with more handicaps than the Premium or Business versions. For example, while it may give hints of what goes wrong, Grammarly won’t always tell you how to rectify the problem.
Several articles around will try and convince you that you can get a Grammarly Premium free trial. This scheme supposedly works by signing up for a plan and then requesting a refund within 30 days. However, as far as I know, Grammarly doesn’t offer refunds.
However, the free version of Grammarly offers a good idea of how usage of it will feel. That user experience is the essential part – use it and see how the workflow feels to you.
In general use, most of us write with many objectives. We may need to write more formally to a business client, try to impart confidence, or even want to add in a touch of humor. With each new article, you can have Grammarly set the tone and guide you along.
The beauty of the English language is that it’s one of the most versatile around. Using the same words in varying contexts can be interpreted in multiple ways. So long as you know what you want to pass on, Grammarly can nudge you gently along the right path.
Thanks to variable tone settings, Grammarly is suitable for many writing scenarios. For example:
To give you a better idea of how delivery tones work, I put together a short email content that is supposedly meant as a resignation notice. Opting for a formal tone and neutral delivery, Grammarly did work to show me what could be improved.
In the image above, we can see that one major recommendation was the removal of contractions, such as converting “I’m” to “I am”.
Many web browsers today come with built-in spell checkers, and so do word processors like Microsoft Word. Some have more advanced features as well, but none of them I’ve seen so far come close to Grammarly.
Putting things into perspective, Grammarly is all about helping you improve what you’re writing. Earlier I spoke about how it works to guide your tone, but the devil is in the detail. It does this by splitting corrections into four distinct zones – Correctness, Clarity, Engagement, and Delivery.
These zones aren’t just corrected for you, but explanations of why they need to be changed come included. Of course, the suggestions come based on parameters you select at the beginning – how you want your article to sound like or feel.
Together, these segments help improve the overall quality of the end product – your final article.
Although a plagiarism checker is not always necessary, it can come in very handy for some. For example – if you’re running an ad agency, working with a pool of writers, or even public relations firms.
While many may not think much of merely cutting and pasting text, it can have an impact on your business. This scenario is especially true if you’re producing content for the web. Search engines tend to frown on content duplication, and unknowingly using copied text can impact your search rankings.
In a business context, using plagiarized text can also open you up to potential litigation. Why go through all that hassle if you can have Grammarly to simply keep an eye out for it as you work along?
Do note though that the plagiarism checker is an active tool. This means it doesn’t check as you go, but needs to be activated when you want Gramamrly to scan your document. Once you hit the ‘Plagiarism’ button it scans your entire text against existing web pages online to see if text matches.
When the scan is complete, Grammarly will show you segments of text that match and the links to where existing content was found. Using this, you can either re-word your content or note it with a citation instead.
An autosave feature may sound like something negligible, but it isn’t. If you’ve spent hours working on an article and power suddenly gets cut, tears won’t reclaim your work. But Grammarly’s autosave will help you.
Aside from that, if you’re using the web-based version of Grammarly, it comes with a recovery feature as well. You don’t have to save all your documents, and the Grammarly repository works as cloud storage does.
Once you delete a file, it movies into a trash can. If you regret deleting it, simply dig in the trash and get it back. Even if you can’t find it anymore, getting in touch with Grammarly as soon as possible can sometimes lead to file recovery.
While it might sound odd, the fact is that English does vary a bit based on where it’s spoken. The most glaring example of this is British and American English, which has different styles and even spelling. One example of this is “Color” (US) versus “Colour” (UK).
While Grammarly may only work with the English language, it supports variations – American English, British English, Canadian English, and even Australian English. I’ll be frank here – I am somewhat familiar with the first two but have no idea what Canadian and Australian English entails.
Yet the fact that Grammarly can distinguish between them is impressive nonetheless.
Since you’re essentially paying an ongoing fee for Grammarly Premium, it comes with dedicated support. There is a very comprehensive FAQ section, along with contact channels, including email and phone.
In any case, the support section of their site has impressively detailed guides on how to use their various products. One extra thing that comes here is a tidbit of information that Grammarly also provides professional writing services for hire.
Given the nature of the service, I found that to be a bit odd. I guess that it’s meant as an alternative for those who give up on writing for themselves.
For those who have read this article down till this point, this is a real biggie. Earlier I mentioned that Grammarly is an AI-based system, but it also learns by interacting with users directly.
From time to time, when working with Grammarly active and interacting with the corrections on their dashboard, you may be asked why you rejected a particular suggestion. This adaptive behavior is interesting since it means additional feedback is likely heading to the developers.
When you consider that Grammarly as a whole has been steadily increasing in features, you can be sure that the language engine is learning and being refined as well. It isn’t a dead-end deal like so many services in the market.
When I started feeling lags in Grammarly, I asked a couple of friends if they experienced this as well. Most of them said no, so I put it down to a glitch. However, after some time, I noticed that the lags were persistent – and were related to how I used Grammarly.
If you produce a whole bunch of text and ignore Grammarly suggestions, the lag will worsen over time. By the time you hit around 1,000-odd words, the lag will be so noticeable you’ll wince.
At one point, it ended up causing my browser to crash with an “out of resource” error – and I have 32GB of system memory.
If you plan to write a document from scratch and follow Grammarly corrections as you work along, all is fine and peachy. If you leave corrections till last, you may suffer by using Grammarly.
Think of this scenario – You paste a ton of research content onto a document to work with later. As soon as you dump in that text, your editor will start lagging so badly it becomes almost unusable.
While the workaround is as easy as making corrections as you move along, it isn’t always practical. On top of that, correcting as you go can significantly slow down a writer’s momentum – not exactly ideal.
The worst part is that even if you correct as you go, the lag will often come back when you hit certain thresholds.
Having your language corrected is indeed helpful. However, having this accompany you on your device 24/7 can quickly become very annoying. That was my opinion the first time I tested Grammarly out.
It was when I started getting used to the flow that it felt more natural. The moral of the story here is that it takes time to get used to – and work with. That’s not something that everyone who pays money for is willing to stand for.
Unless you enter a relationship with Grammarly fully intending (and expecting) to improve your writing, it will become tiring very quickly.
One of the biggest gripes I have with Grammarly is that some suggestions it makes are just flat-out wrong. While it does an admirable job detecting most mistakes and making suitable suggestions, it does fail on context sometimes.
This situation is especially true if you use terminology that’s correct in the sense of a particular topic. For seasoned writers, it isn’t much of a problem. However, if you’re part of the mass market and relying on it to be always correct, you may get a rude shock.
The sad thing about this is that suggested word replacements sometimes come in with no actual value. Yes, you should avoid over-using common words, but not to the extent that a randomly chosen alternative is pumped in out of context.
Building on pro #7 I listed for Grammarly working with English variations, the downside is that it only works for the English language in general. Honestly, it is a bit far-fetched to expect availability in all languages, but a small effort to expand in that direction would have been interesting.
While I don’t mean to say that a foreign-language implementation is a must, more effort to help out non-native English speakers would have made Grammarly an even better proposition.
Grammarly as a whole comes in three pricing tiers – Free, Premium, and Business. The latter two prices vary depending on the sign-up scenario.
The free version naturally comes at no cost but does not offer advanced correction suggestions. While it does give hints, you will likely spend a lot of time trying to fix the problems it finds.
Grammarly Premium offers much more comprehensive suggestions. In many cases, it goes as far as to explain why those corrections are necessary.
Grammarly Premium costs $29.95/mo at face value, but that price drops if you sign on for longer terms. Billed quarterly, you pay $19.98/mo while the annual subscription aggregates out to $11.66/mo.
Grammarly Business prices will depend on the number of users signed up with the plan. It starts at $12.50/mo per user with a minimum sign-up of 3 pax. As you increase the number of users, prices go down in a tiered structure.
In context, Grammarly Premium costs what you would pay for a few cups of Starbucks coffee each month. Keeping that in mind, it could save you from making some serious blunders when creating many types of content.
It also isn’t restricted to any particular type of user, since all of us need to communicate. For example, if you’re a business owner, think of the intangible benefits such as the impression you’ll make on a potential customer.
As a student, you may intend for Grammarly to help you ace assignment work for clarity or other related matters. The most important element here is that it can serve as a learning aid, paving the road to writing that perfect CV when you graduate.
Having used both the free version and Grammarly Premium, I have to say that the potential is quite limited unless you use the latter. It’ll work in a pinch but is nowhere nearly as helpful as Grammarly Premium.
Yes, it can. I’ve found Grammarly to be exceptionally good at guidance. While there is a lot of spoon-feeding in the Premium version, if you keep in mind the service’s comments as you go, you will likely notice improvements.
Yes, it is. Grammarly is one of the best grammar checkers in the market and can prove especially valuable for students looking to improve their writing and vocabulary in English. The plagiarism checker can also help avoid leftover impact from cut and paste research material.
A legitimate company provides Grammarly and has been improving the ecosystem since 2009. Writing is backed up on their servers and accounts are secured on multiple levels. This security includes 2FA, plus certification in PCI DSS, CSA, SOC2, and more.
Grammarly is free to use as a basic service. The Premium plan starts at $11.66/mo, and there is also a Business plan, which starts at $12.50/mo. Pricing can vary depending on your subscription model.
Not necessarily. Use of external aids is subject to the policies that your educational institute has in place. Instead of as a means towards assignment completion, I’d recommend you look at Grammarly as a learning tool.