Email etiquette

-Rujuta Joshi

Writing and receiving emails has become a part of our daily lives. Every application, website, job, and even relatives communicate to us through emails. We are taught about writing emails and receiving them at a young age as they are a very necessary means of transmitting information from one person to another. While writing email of a job or for professional purposes it is necessary we maintain an etiquette that is acceptable and show our humble attitude. It is something people learn with time, but is best if we come to know of it as soon as possible. This article will help you come up to date on your email etiquette. Following are some tips that you should follow while writing an email –

  1. Always include a subject 

The receiver of your email maybe receiving lots of email daily, and to open each on e of them to look what they are about turns out to be a time consuming process, and they might even ignore your mail rendering it not important due to a lack of subject. So always include a subject. The subject should be short but should inform the recover what the whole email is about in a simple line or two.  If your email is very urgent or important than only write the subject in capitalized letter otherwise refrain from doing so, writing in capitalized letter in email is equal to shouting so try not to do so if not necessary.

  1. Use an appropriate greeting 

While writing to a friend or relative you can use the greeting of dear but if it is a professional email use a more formal tone like respected sir \ma’am etc.  If you have just talked t the person or are sending a chain of emails than it is alright to send the email without any greeting. If you are talking to your boss or applying for some job don’t start with hi or hello start in a professional and formal manner with a greeting .

  1. Introduce yourself 

The email that you are sending is to an unknown person than try to introduce yourself in the first four lines briefly. Write your name and the purpose of you sending them this email that will give the recover a brief idea about you and the reason behind your email. If the email is for a job application just write your name and what job you are applying for with your attached resume which will than give all the other additional information about you.

  1. Use proper punctuation 

Use of proper punctuation shows your grammar skills and the hold you have over the language.  If you use wrong punctuation it will stand out sorely and if you use the right one it will sit just perfectly. Always end a sentence with a terminal like a full stop or question mark, though make sure to not use many question marks at a time as it will look like you are bombing the recipients with a lot of questions. 

Also be careful when using exclamatory marks, in a business email use only one more usage of them shows your unprofessionalism and immatureness.

  1. Don’t give confidential information

An email as you know can be forwarded, saved and copied; even when you have deleted it from your account it remains in the server and the recipients email so make sure to not pass confidential mail or personal remarks that might cause a dent in your reputation. If the email goes in the wrong hands it can cause serious problems sometimes even legal. Servers are not always safe, hacking has increased and is very easy nowadays, protect the confidential information.

  1. Grammar knowledge is necessary 

Whether it is a professional email or an informal one good grammar skill is a necessity, it shows your education level and your smartness. Check 2-3 times for spelling or grammatical mistakes in an email especially a professional one. Some of the common mistakes people make are – 

  • There/ their 
  • Your/ you’re
  • Its/it’s
  • Two/too/to
  • Loose/lose
  • Effect/affect

This are some of the most common mistakes people make , though there are apps available online that help you check your grammar , so avoid such rookie mistakes.

  1. Do not add emojis-

Yes emojis have become a daily habitat of ours, with every text message to a friend an emoji is attached and it is alright to add emojis to emails to friends but refrain in doing so for a professional email, it will show you as les competent and more childish. Emails that are to be sent to your boss or to apply for a job definitely don’t need any emojis so lay a rest on them.

  1. Punctuality is necessary in emails too

No one likes to get a late reply on an email that they had sent more than 24hrs before. Of course a in the minute reply is not necessary but you should at least reply within 12 hours of receiving the mail at least a confirmation or a acknowledgment of having received the mail is highly appreciated.

  1. Do not cc to everyone 

You may have received the mail with cc to different persons but you have to reply to only one person or if mentioned more than one. Maybe not everyone needs to see your response and as we saw above, an email in wrong hands can cause problems so make sure you send it to only the intended person.

  1.  Explain clearly

Even when you write the email make sure to explain whatever you write in clear points. The other person might not have time to go through lengthy texts other than asked for so stick to the point and be precise it will give a professional undertone to your email.

  1. Sign off properly 

Your greeting and sign off should be consistent to the level of respect for the recover. If it is a formal office email sign off courteously with a thank you , thank you for your time, hope to hear from you soon and than your name, don’t forget to put your signature the person receiving does not want to look through everywhere to know who you are so always sign off with a signature.

Here is a format for a professional email for you –

Writing an email does seem to be easy but is a very precise, attention seeking work. In this technology reliable world everything is connected to you through your email so making sure that you have a decent email id that can be used professionally and the etiquette to write just near perfect emails is a must. Hopefully this article today helped you push in the path of doing so. A perfectly written email forms a very satisfactory impression of you and may help you a bit in your way to success.


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