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Writing Impactful Emails: How To Craft Better Business Emails

The world of business runs on emails. If you’ve ever spent more than a day in a corporate office, you’ll be all too familiar with the continual influx of emails, replies, and online communications. In fact, the average person receives anywhere from 100 to 120 emails every single day, demonstrating just how much business can revolve around this medium.

If you participate in this world, you’re going to have to start writing a lot of emails. While short and sweet often does the trick, sometimes you’ll want to spend a little more time crafting the right email for that situation. Whether you’re talking with your boss, drafting a formal email, or writing a customer-facing interaction, there are a lot of strategies you can employ to improve your business writing.

In this article, we’ll be breaking down all things email, demonstrating how you can write phenomenal business emails and impress your office. We’ll cover all of the top strategies that you can employ when writing.

Let’s get right into it.

Strategies For Writing Better Business Emails

Improving your business writing skills is a matter of practice. Although there are strategies you can employ, this is also something that you’ll naturally build up over time. It’s a good idea to familiarize yourself with the best strategies for writing better business emails early, as this will allow you to bring yourself up to speed and improve rapidly.

To improve your communication skills, there are a few email practices that you should start to employ:

  • Focus on Purpose
  • Redraft After Writing
  • Use Email Signatures

Let’s break these down further.

Focus on Purpose

The structure of an email always conveys a core meaning. In fact, that’s one of the reasons that emails have subject lines, as they allow readers to understand what the purpose of the message will be before they open it. Just because you have a subject line where you can include core details, doesn’t mean you should then ramble when starting off your email.

While it’s good to include niceties, don’t spend too much of the email beating around the bush. As quickly as possible, get to the point of the message to ensure that you don’t lose your reader’s focus. If you struggle to do this, a great strategy when writing business emails is to plan them out with a few bullet points beforehand.

When opening your email, before putting in any contact information, spend some time jotting down the main skeleton of your email. What is the core purpose of the email; why are you sending it? What tone should I use; how formal should I be? Questions like these allow you to better understand why you’re sending the email, which will allow you to write faster and more precisely.

If you can’t find the central reason for sending the email in this exercise, you probably don’t have a strong reason to send the email in the first place. This short exercise can help you to streamline communication and ensure you’re only sending necessary emails. 

Redraft After Writing

Important emails are not something you should simply type out and hit send. Think of these emails – whether they’re to a higher-up in your company or an important client – as a representation of your best you. Nothing is going to give you a bad impression faster than an email that is riddled with errors, punctuation faults, and poor grammar.

Before hitting send, you should always endeavor to read through your emails at least once, if not more than that in order to catch any errors that might have slipped by you. Beyond just checking for errors, you should also check for pacing and tone.

Most of the time, you’re going to want to portray a certain idea in your emails. When you read through your email, if you notice that you’re struggling with getting to the point, then cut out any surplus material.

Beyond just focusing on your purpose, spend time reading your email for pacing. If you’ve relied on the same sentence structures, reading aloud can help you spot them. Are your sentences the same length? Or do you vary them to create an email that sounds better to your reader? Although only a handful of people will actively notice these distinctions, your readers will all subconsciously notice these changes.

Redrafting is also also a great way of cutting out any information that you don’t necessarily need. Most of the time, people tend to overwrite. We’re all busy people; no one wants to receive a 1,000-word email in their inbox. Instead, cut down as much as possible while still keeping the core of your message there.

Use Email Signatures

Email signatures are phenomenally useful, allowing you to include a range of additional information, links to external sites like your company website, and marketing materials. Especially when you’re communicating with external parties, email signatures can do a lot of the talking for you, explaining who you are and what your job role is.

Email signatures also allow you to include additional marketing materials, like banners, case studies, CTAs, and more. By making use of this space, you can bring a lot more to every email you send. What’s more, as they hold a lot of information that you commonly include, they’ll also reduce the amount of time it takes you to write an email.

Don’t overlook email signatures; they can become a vital tool in your arsenal that allows you to get more information in the same amount of space.

When signing off an email, remember that your email signature is going to be right below. This feature allows you to leave out all of the superfluous personal information and focus on writing personable, friendly sign-offs. You won’t have to worry about including your information because you know it’ll always be right below your in-email sign-off. 

Final Thoughts

Learning how to effectively write business emails is a skill that will truly last you a lifetime. While all of these strategies and tips might seem too taxing to employ, they’re a matter of practice. Once you’ve learned how to write great emails, the process will come naturally to you, allowing you to do all of the above without even thinking.

Over time, you’ll get faster and more efficient when writing emails, allowing you to produce higher-quality communications in the same amount of time. Great communication is one of the most important skills you can have in a workplace, with a little practice in business emails going an incredibly long way.

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By Susan Barlow

Dr. Susan Barlow is retired from academia after teaching business administration, project management, and business writing courses for over 20 years.

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