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written by | May 9, 2022

Business Letter Format: Template, Example and Tips

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Professional communication is not as easy as it seems. While messaging and texting are convenient, they cannot compete with well-written business letters. A formal letter may look more professional and be more likely to get a positive response. You need to be able to write a business letter that makes a positive impression and gets results.

The guidelines include using a professional format for letters, avoiding generic salutations and being clear about the purpose of writing. Finally, it would be best if you end with a call to action. Also, you should aim for one page or less in text. Proofread your letter before it is sent. Continue reading to find out how to craft a professional business letter.

Did You Know?

Text Request's texting experts claim that only 20% of emails get opened, and 95% of messages are read within 3 minutes. A lot of emails are lost or deleted immediately. It's no surprise then that some businesses send correspondence by email and print, followed by a shorter version as a message to make sure the recipient receives it.

Also Read: Essential Aspects to Know About Letter of Credit

What is a Business Letter?

In order to start a conversation with customers and other stakeholders, business letters are perfect. A company may send a business letter to notify clients of a change in their service agreement, a fresh product, a promotion, or a safety notice. A letter may be compulsory for

personal reasons. It is an essential part of a job, school, scholarship or grant application. Cover letters for employment should always be written in a specific letter format.

A business letter format can also support an immigration application of a colleague, nominate someone to receive a scholarship or award, or suggest someone for a job.

Letters were once sent by post, and if the information in the letter was urgent, we can fax it or send it electronically as an attachment. Although nowadays business letters are mostly sent through electronic mail.

Business Letter Format

Date

The dateline, which indicates when you write A message, appears on the second to third lines. Above the page top, it will correspond to line 13 at 2 inches (around 5.5 cm). If you don't use a letterhead, the date will appear after the return address.

The most popular date format is month-day-year (January 24, 2021). Ordinals, the months should not be abbreviated, and ordinals (1, 3, 14, etc.) shouldn't come into usage.

Letterhead or Return Address

The business letter format with letterhead is among the most compulsory. It includes the telephone number, company name and full address. If applicable, the website address and fax number are also there.

If a letter is longer than one page, you should use letterhead on the first blank page for the following pages. If you don't own a letterhead, type your return address in an entire block type letters at the margin.

Inside Address

The inside address, which is the receiver's address, is used to identify the recipient and person to whom a letter will be forwarded. It is placed flush with a margin on the left and consists of 2-5 single-spaced lines, which use both upper & lowercase letters. It depends on how long the letter is; you can leave lines that come in between the dateline blank (the standard number of three to five). The address line should not end in a comma, and you must not extend to the centre of the page. Continue along with the item present on the two-space in the next line. 

Get the exact address information from the company letterhead of the addressee or the department of human resources at the receiving company. You must exactly copy this data. Also, make sure to spell it correctly and avoid using abbreviations. The first line starts with the person's title.

Salutation

A salutation is an essential part of emails and business letter writing. It should be typed flush, with the margin available on the left 2 lines below the attention or inside the address line. A colon should follow the salutation. 

Web Designing Enterprises

68 Connaught Place 

New Delhi, 110001

Subject

Although it is not mandatory, the subject line can be very helpful in identifying the message's content and focus. It should be clear and concise. It should be concise and specific. Place the subject line flush left 2 lines above the salutation.

Also Read: How to Write a Business Plan - A Step-By-Step Guide

Reference Lines or Attention

An optional attention line can be used to know about the individual, department, or officer the letter needs to be addressed. The attention line must be flushing with the available left margin and two lines below or above it.

Signature Block & Complimentary Close

2 lines beneath the end of the letter are compulsory. The standard ending is Sincere, and it should follow a comma. Employers prefer to have "Yours Sincerely" instead of "Yours Truly". Sometimes, informal expressions, for example, "Cordially" or "Best wishes", are more common than formal ones, especially if your friend is the recipient. Capitalising the very 1st letter of the complimentary closing is not allowed.

You can leave four lines blank to allow for your signature or use an italicised font that replicates a signature. After creating a signature block, type your full name. Your title can appear on one line, separated by your name with a comma or placed on the next. To help your reader identify you as male or female, you may include a catchy title in parentheses after your name: (Ms.) Shreya Rajput.

Message Body

The salutation is the beginning of the body, and it starts 2 lines beneath it. The message should be spaced into paragraphs with a single-double lined space. It should be in the centre of the page, not at the bottom/top. Keep all the paragraphs brief and follow the plain English writing flow.

The following section illustrates some important tips for writing a professional business letter.

Tips for Writing a Business Letter

Although it is important to use an official format for letters, the content of these letters deserves equally as much attention. Consider what you want to accomplish or your goal for writing your letter. Use clear, concise language to communicate your message.

Begin by briefly introducing yourself and your purpose for writing. Next, move on to the information that you want to share. Murphy warns that you should double-check all facts in your letter, and false information could put your credibility at stake. Conclude your letter with a call for action to achieve your goals. If the letter is an invitation, you can ask the recipient to RSVP or suggest setting up a meeting if your goal is to establish a business partnership.

Your contact information should be at the top of your letter. However, the closing paragraph should reiterate how to reach you. It should be easy for the recipient to complete your request. We recommend 250 words or less.

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People are reading information on their phones. So, it is better to keep things short and to the point

Conclusion

The formatting and elements of a printed business letter can be kept formal while being adaptable to digital media. However, there are two minor differences. The subject line is a summary of the letter or its indication, and the sender's information is located at the bottom of the letter, just below the name. Still, have questions about the business letter format? The following section will answer all your questions in detail. Have a look.
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FAQs

Q: What is an ideal business letter format?

Ans:

A business letter format should contain:

  • A return address (your company's name, address).
  • Date (recipients' name and address).
  • Salutation and body copy.
  • Closing.

Q: How do I start a business letter?

Ans:

Business letter writing demands perfection, including a perfect start.

Your business letter should be formal and professional. A business letter should start with "Dear/Respected Mr/Ms" When playing safe, you can go with something like "To whomsoever it may concern". If you know the person you are writing to well, you will probably already know their preferred address.

Q: What are various business letter types?

Ans:

There are many types of business letters that you may need to send. These may include sales letters, order letters, thank-you letters, letters of recommendation, networking letters, commendation letters, follow-up letters, etc.

Q: What is the ideal business letter writing structure?

Ans:

If you're wondering how to write a business letter, then worry no more; the structure of a business letter is very simple. Your letterhead should contain contact information. Then, you will structure it in the same manner as any other letter: begin with the appropriate salutation and write the contents. Finally, sign it by your name.

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The information, product and services provided on this website are provided on an “as is” and “as available” basis without any warranty or representation, express or implied. Khatabook Blogs are meant purely for educational discussion of financial products and services. Khatabook does not make a guarantee that the service will meet your requirements, or that it will be uninterrupted, timely and secure, and that errors, if any, will be corrected. The material and information contained herein is for general information purposes only. Consult a professional before relying on the information to make any legal, financial or business decisions. Use this information strictly at your own risk. Khatabook will not be liable for any false, inaccurate or incomplete information present on the website. Although every effort is made to ensure that the information contained in this website is updated, relevant and accurate, Khatabook makes no guarantees about the completeness, reliability, accuracy, suitability or availability with respect to the website or the information, product, services or related graphics contained on the website for any purpose. Khatabook will not be liable for the website being temporarily unavailable, due to any technical issues or otherwise, beyond its control and for any loss or damage suffered as a result of the use of or access to, or inability to use or access to this website whatsoever.
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Disclaimer :
The information, product and services provided on this website are provided on an “as is” and “as available” basis without any warranty or representation, express or implied. Khatabook Blogs are meant purely for educational discussion of financial products and services. Khatabook does not make a guarantee that the service will meet your requirements, or that it will be uninterrupted, timely and secure, and that errors, if any, will be corrected. The material and information contained herein is for general information purposes only. Consult a professional before relying on the information to make any legal, financial or business decisions. Use this information strictly at your own risk. Khatabook will not be liable for any false, inaccurate or incomplete information present on the website. Although every effort is made to ensure that the information contained in this website is updated, relevant and accurate, Khatabook makes no guarantees about the completeness, reliability, accuracy, suitability or availability with respect to the website or the information, product, services or related graphics contained on the website for any purpose. Khatabook will not be liable for the website being temporarily unavailable, due to any technical issues or otherwise, beyond its control and for any loss or damage suffered as a result of the use of or access to, or inability to use or access to this website whatsoever.