Clichés are bad for Website Content. Here’s 15 to Seriously Avoid.

By Jakk Ogden on July 2, 2013 in Content Tips

I think that everybody in their life will have used a cliché either in writing or oral communication. Clichés have their time and place but they aren’t fit for your websites content. Why? Because clichés are tired, overdone and lazy (sorry to rain on your parade).

Clichés are popular with modern writers because they offer the ability to purvey a message that’s familiar to the reader. The trouble is, clichés have a life cycle that’s very short. Once they are used too often they lose their value and can portray a writer as uninterested in their subject.

Content writing for the web should always be simple and to the point. It should always be scannable and consistently relevant to the reader. Avoiding the use of clichés is easy once you know which the most appealing are to the modern writer. So, we’ve listed them.

Find 10 clichés to seriously avoid in your content writing below. There’s only 15 so you don’t bite off more than you can chew. Enjoy!

1. At the end of the day

2. Think outside the box

3. To all intents and purposes

4. All that glitters is not gold

5. The early bird gets the worm

6. Keep your eye on the ball

7. A man’s gotta do what a man’s gotta do

8. Too big for his/her boots

9. Wet your whistle

10. In the nick of time

11. It’s the exception that proves the rule

12. Middle of the road

13. Between a rock and a hard place

14. Let the cat out of the bag

15. Kill two birds with one stone

Do you have any other clichés that you’re sick of seeing in writing on the web? Be sure to share them with us by commenting below, on Facebook or through Twitter @content_hero.

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About the Author

Jakk OgdenView all posts by Jakk Ogden
Jakk Ogden is the founder and managing director of Content Hero. Jakk's background lies in marketing, advertising and publishing. He is partial to the clever infographic, Mark Twain, golden age comic books and Johnny Cash. He has written over 3,000 articles that have been published online. Connect with him on Linkedin, , or buy him a coffee in Leeds to talk about how high quality content can grow your business.


  1. Brad Castro July 11, 2013 Reply

    To me, clichés and stock phrases serve similar functions – I’m not sure they’re so much about conveying a message to the reader as much as they’re about communicating quickly (and lazily).

    You can avoid using clichés fairly easily, but it’s much more difficult to eradicate all the stock phrases we’re accustomed to using.

    (“Accustomed to using” – just used one there.)

    The American novel, Cold Mountain, by Charles Frazier is an amazing example of a work almost entirely devoid of stock phrases. It wasn’t just that his sentences had never been written before, even the parts and fragments of the sentences were new.

    • Author
      Jakk July 11, 2013 Reply

      Hi Brad,

      Thank you for the comment. I completely agree with you. Perhaps I could do another write up on stock phrases in the future.

      The book you mentioned is one of my must reads. I simply must get round to that!


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