Since the inception of writing aids, it feels like we’ve been comparing Grammarly free vs premium. Writing aids, like Grammarly, have helped us improve our writing by highlighting grammatical and spelling errors and other writing concerns.
With an array of tools on the market, taking the plunge to pay for one specific tool is a big decision. And yet, there are so many who use Grammarly and swear by it.
But how helpful is Grammarly, and is the paid plan worth it?
To help you make your decision, we’ll cover some key topics in this post:
- What is Grammarly?
- Grammarly pricing options
- Is Grammarly safe?
- Is the free version of Grammarly worth it?
- Grammarly free vs premium most used features
- My favourite Grammarly premium feature
- Why is Grammarly premium so expensive?
1 – What is Grammarly?
Grammarly is a cloud-based writing assistant that offers suggestions to improve the quality of a piece of writing. Whether you want to write better emails or well-argued academic essays, you can use Grammarly to write clear, concise, and compelling copy.
Set your tone goals and get writing! Grammarly runs through your document and checks for:
- Correctness — improves grammar, spelling, and punctuation
- Clarity — make your writing easier to understand
- Engagement — makes your writing attractive and effective
- Delivery — helps you make the right impression
- Plagiarism — makes sure your writing is original
- Style guide consistency — helps you stick to business writing guidelines
To use Grammarly, you will first need to set up an account. Then, you can get the Grammarly Chrome extension, desktop app, and smartphone app.
Grammarly for Chrome, the Chrome extension, scans your writing in different editors like Google Docs, WordPress, Gmail, etc. With the Windows and MAC desktop apps, you can drag a file into the app and start editing and proofreading it. The smartphone app gives you access to the Grammarly keyboard. This way, you can check your writing when using the keyboard to type messages or take notes.
With these different options, you can use Grammarly wherever you write and boost the overall standard of your writing.
2 – Grammarly pricing options
As Grammarly’s main aim is to improve the quality of your writing, it offers a variety of solutions and suggestions, based on the plan you choose.
Grammarly Premium and Grammarly Business users using paid plans can get more out of the service.
What plan you need depends on your writing goals:
- Do you want a simple grammar and spell check?
- Do you want to identify patterns of error in your writing and improve its overall quality?
- Do you want your team to improve its writing and communication skills?
Here are the differences between the plans Grammarly offers:
Most writers begin at Grammarly’s Free plan. This plan is only for individuals and helps you reduce grammar, spelling, and punctuation errors.
If you want basic writing suggestions, then this is the plan to start with.
You can set writing goals and have access to the tone detection feature. You can set up goals based on the type of audience reading, level of formality required, tone, and intent. This will help you write effectively for the right audience.
Grammarly Premium for individuals
Grammarly Premium takes the Free package to the next level by providing style, tone, and clarity improvements.
Together, these features will help you:
- Maintain consistency
- Write clearly and concisely
- Format your copy better
- Use compelling vocabulary
- Improve deliverability by writing more confidently and using inclusive language
- Detect plagiarism
With these features, you not only reduce the number of errors in your writing but also improve its effectiveness. You’ll write clearly for the right audience, notice error patterns, and even learn why certain words or phrases do better than others.
Grammarly Premium for teams
In Grammarly Business, you get all the features of Grammarly Premium plus more support for professional communication. With Business, you can set up teams of 3 to 149 users, and you can create a business style guide for everyone to use and follow.
In addition to features in the Free and Grammarly Premium plans, you have access to tools to improve business and brand communication and messaging, like:
- Business style guides
- List of snippets
- Reusable sentences and phrases
- Brand tones (on-brand and off-brand tones)
- Analytics and reports.
Here is a more detailed overview of what each plan offers:
|FOR INDIVIDUALS||FOR TEAMS|
|Free||Premium – $12/month||Business – $12.50 / member / month|
|Spelling||Everything in Free||Everything in Premium|
|Grammar||Clarity-focused sentence rewrites||Style guide|
|Plagiarism detection||Brand tones|
|Word choice||Analytics dashboard|
|Formality level||Priority email support|
|Fluency||Account roles and permissions|
|Additional advanced suggestions||SAML SSO (for accounts with 50+ users)|
Note — Grammarly Business charges per member (user) per month.
3 – Is Grammarly safe?
Yes, Grammarly’s Chrome extension and apps are safe to use. Grammarly promises to prioritise the safety of users and their content.
To this effect, security is built into the software’s infrastructure and company operations. It is certified on different levels, including SOC 2 (Type 2), HIPAA, Cloud Security Alliance, GDPR, etc.
You can check out the whole list on Grammarly’s Security page.
4 – Is the free version of Grammarly worth it?
Yes! Whether you’re a trained writer or someone who needs help, Grammarly’s free plan is a good place to start finding error patterns in your writing.
In the free version, you get grammar, spelling, and punctuation suggestions. These suggestions come with brief explanations for why you should consider accepting the suggestion. This way, you can understand the reason behind the suggestion and remember it for next time.
In the free version, you have access to the Grammarly editor, where you can set your writing goals, enter your text, and make corrections based on the suggestions you receive. You will also receive a text score for the quality. The more edits and adjustments you make, the higher your score. Clicking on the score will give you more details about what determines this score.
With this analysis, you can begin to identify error patterns and correct them before Grammarly has a chance to find them.
Depending on how much writing you do on a daily basis, the free version is enough to suffice your needs.
5 – Grammarly Free vs Premium most used features
Most writers begin with the free Grammarly plan and gradually move on to the paid one if needed. This is because you can get quick a lot out of the free plan itself.
Still, what options do you have available with the premium, paid versions?
And is the paid plan worth it too?
As you can see, the premium plans offer a few more detailed suggestions—from using more effective words to identifying consistency issues to detecting plagiarism.
If you want to take your writing to the next level, it may not be a bad idea to go premium.
Since Grammarly explains why you should make a suggestion, you are learning as you write. And these skills can be applied then, even without the paid plan.
6 – My favourite Grammarly premium feature
I have been a user of Grammarly premium for over a year now and use it all the time.
While all the features help me keep in touch with my writing, the feature that does the most is the Grammarly editor.
I usually write in Grammarly or copy-paste content into the editor. Then, I run through the suggestions and accept them as I see fit.
Since I write for various audiences and styles, I need to adjust my goals to match the search intent and audience. The editor makes it easy to set new goals and offers relevant suggestions.
7 – Why is Grammarly premium so expensive?
Expensive is subjective. But, Grammarly does get a bad rep for its pricing.
This is because you can get basic suggestions and help in the free version, and the paid version may not seem worth it.
So, why are the premium plans expensive? When you compare the free version with the paid versions (in the table above), you can see the difference in features and suggestions offered.
Here’s why it’s worth it…
Grammarly for individuals:
Here are key features that individual users on the premium can benefit from:
1. Custom settings
With your individual Grammarly account, you can set up personalised settings and apply these settings across all apps.
Some key personalization features include:
- Dictionary — add words and phrases so that Grammarly does not flag them as misspellings.
- Language — add a primary language, writing language (American English, British English, Canadian English, Australian English) and enable fluency assistance.
- Optional suggestions — set suggestions for specific error patterns.
2. Email support
In the premium version, you get suggestions for copy within emails. In the Chrome extension, this feature is highlighted as “Readers may skim parts.”
This feature highlights sections likely to be read and ones likely to be skimmed. It gives you suggestions like “shorten paragraphs” or “email is a bit wordy.”
This helps you write better emails that are more likely to be read and responded to.
3. Plagiarism detector
Whether or not you intend to plagiarise, plagiarism occurs quite a bit. And part of presenting yourself as a good and well-informed writer is to avoid passing someone else’s ideas as your own.
Grammarly’s plagiarism checker runs scans of about 16 million web pages as well as from ProQuest’s academic databases to check for plagiarism within your content.
The scan gives you details about what parts of your copy might be plagiarised. Whether you are writing a review or academic paper, you can use this tool to ensure your content is original and improve your credibility.
Grammarly for teams:
Grammarly Business comes with all the features of the free and individual premium plans. In addition to those, there are key features focused on business writing, brand tone, and team collaboration:
1. Style guides
When you set up a Business account, you can create a style guide for your brand. Grammarly offers a guide to setting up your business style guide.
You can create new rules, an explanation for the rules, and the correction. This is then viewed and used by all users within your team to maintain grammatical and style consistencies.
2. Brand tone check
This feature checks your teams’ content for brand voice and tone, based on predetermined rules you feed it.
As your users write, this feature will give them an “off-brand” or “on-brand” tone rating. You can set up communication styles to be consistent and on-brand and ensure brand messaging across the business matches your brand voice.
Snippets work in a similar fashion as style guides. You can add specific snippets that you and your team use regularly, and everyone can simply pull from the snippet instead of rewriting that phrase or message.
These snippets can be short phrases or long paragraphs, whatever your business needs. It can cut down on time spent finding the right thing to say and speed up the writing process.
4. Team usage stats
Grammarly also offers stats and analytics so you can see how your team is progressing.
Check user activity and review metrics to see how everyone is using the tool. Getting into the habit of checking your writing stats every once in a while will help you and your teams identify error patterns and ways to improve their writing process.
Is Grammarly premium worth it for students?
Yes. Grammarly can be a significant aid for students who want to reduce grammatical and spelling errors and ensure their work is not plagiarized. As you learn various skills in school and university, you can use this writing aid to boost your writing skills.
Also, Grammarly student discount is a thing, if you ever want to get Grammarly for cheaper while you’re still a student.
With this in mind, if you’re ready to take Grammarly premium for a spin, sign up here.