Business Letter Format

Thinking about ‘Business Letters,’ the first thing that will hit our minds is old traditional forms of official letters on business letterheads. The entire concept of business letters might appear ancient to you. But that is not so!

Business letters might appear like an outdated concept, with the surge in emails and messages.

However, the truth is, in the business world, printed letters are more significant than emails and messages.

Studies state that an office worker receives approximately 121 emails per day. In this contrast, your handwritten letter will have more chances of being read when delivered via your mailbox instead of your inbox.

A well-written letter for an invitation, collaboration, or a thanking letter can always stand out compared to an email. 

But every official letter must follow a particular format; similarly, business letters too have a writing format. This article is all about that, but before that, let us know what exactly is ‘Business Letter.’

 

What is a Formal Letter?

A business letter is a formal letter used by business professionals to communicate for various purposes. For example, these letters can be used for professional agreements between business clients, employees, stakeholders as well as individuals. These letters are also issued as a warning, notice, invitation, declaration, information, apology, and any other corporate matters. 

A business letter can also be termed as a ‘Business Correspondence Letter’ because these letters are primarily used for correspondence between two companies or individuals. It is also an official letter, and hence it is mostly formal in writing following a basic format. The framework used is mostly like any other official letter, but the letter’s tone makes the difference. Hence, a business letter can be termed as an ‘Official Letter.’

 

What Is the Importance of a Formal Letter?

In the business world, communication is a significant factor. People in business need to establish a good network in order to develop their own organizations. The importance of communication in business is irreplaceable; the more the businessmen will communicate with people, the better exposure they can expect. 

Earlier, when the businesses were small, the businessmen had to meet in person to discuss matters and other related business matters, which created a big communication gap, as meeting frequently was not always possible. So, later they adopted the policy of sending representatives for direct contacts and meetings. Which also had their own limitations.

Thereby, this process of sending formal letters was embraced. This process was first initiated by the United States and Britain and was then accepted by the entire world. As a result, professional Letters are the cheapest and most comprehensive form of communication between business identities, bridging the communication gap.

The importance of business letters are immense; some of the highlighting benefits are:

  • Exchanging business information: Business letters are the most economical and convenient means of communication among business owners. With these letters, the business executives can easily exchange information with their customers, suppliers, investors, government offices, regulatory authorities, etc.

 

  • Establishing business relationships: Communication plays an essential role in establishing a business relationship. Business letters have made communication easier, thus helping in establishing and maintaining smooth relationships with various parties. Business letters also help in reducing the distance between a business and its customers, suppliers, creditors, and other public groups.

 

  • Creation of markets: A circular letter is a form of business letter that is used to create new markets for goods and services. This letter contains information about the utility, features, and usefulness of the products. It encourages the customer to buy the products, thereby increasing the demand and sale.

 

Formal Letter Format

A formal letter must be clear and concise. The formal letters can be of various types:

  • Letter of Enquiry
  • Order Letter
  • Letter of Complaint, etc. 

 

Examples of Formal Letter

Letter of Enquiry

3441 Palmer Road

Ohio 43085

United State 

June 30, 20xx

The Director

A to Z Classes,

2254 Maxwell Street

Missouri 635463

United States

Sub.: Enquiry for my research 

Respected Mr. Lee,

I am currently a student of XYZ Business School pursuing my MBA. I am in my final semester and have to submit a presentation on marketing. 

I got to know about your company from a site and would like to research on your company. Therefore, kindly enlighten me with your marketing procedure. Consequently, I would like to request you to grant me a day’s permission to visit your company and inquire about your marketing process. 

I will be very grateful if you permit me to conduct my research work in your company.

Thanking you.

With kind regards

XY

 

Order Letter

3441 Palmer Road

Ohio 43085

United State 

June 30, 20xx

Turner Woodland

A to Z Classes,

2254 Maxwell Street

Missouri 635463

United States

Dear Mr.Turner Woodland,

My name is Laurent Hamster. I would like to order a coffee table set from your catalog. Its item number is #56941236. It is listed at $500. 

I have included a check of $550 that will cover the item cost as well as the delivery. 

Kindly ship the item to this address:

3541 Lucky Duck Drive 

Laurent Hamster 

Monroeville, PA 15142

Sincerely

Laurent Hamster

9 Tips on How to Write Formal Letters

Some tips to help you write down formal letters better,

 

  1. Write the letter in brief and state the purpose of the letter in the first paragraph itself. Do not deviate from the topic and avoid using flowing languages.
  2. Stay firm with the letter’s tone; the entire letter must be written in a formal tone. Even if you know the person, remember the fact that the letter is meant for official purposes. 
  3. Proofread the letter, make sure there are no spelling and grammatical errors.
  4. Follow the format of the letter strictly.
  5. Address the reader formally using Mr., Miss, or Mrs. 
  6. Use a subject line to mention the purpose of the reader.
  7. Use letterhead to make the letter more professional.
  8. Put your signature neatly at the bottom of the letter.
  9. List out all the people you will be sending the letter to so that not even a single person is left out. 

 

Business Letter Templates

The formal letter, written for exchanging the official information only, follows the following format.

Sender’s information

In this section, mention your address, contact number, and email ID.

You can also mention your full name in this section, but you have to sign at the end anyway. So, mentioning your name in this section is optional; you may or may not.

If your company has a letterhead, it is always better to write the letter on it; it is not only professional but can also be quick, as you can neglect this section.

Date

This section is a must, as the date of issuing the letter is very important. You can choose any format to write the date, but instead of abbreviating with numbers, you can write the entire date, as this is an official document. 

If writing to American companies, use the American date format, i.e., the month before the day.

Recipient’s Address 

The recipient’s address is the address where the letter will be delivered. Begin with the recipient’s name, their title (Ms./Mrs./Mr./Dr), and then their address. First, confirm the address, mention it, and try to be as specific as possible to reach the right destination. 

If you don’t know the name of the person whom you should address, kindly find it out. Do not leave the space blank. You can call the company or directly speak to the employees of the company to find out the name.

The Salutation

A salutation isn’t just a simple greeting; it contemplates respect. Therefore, the choice of salutation will be based on how well you know the person and subject of the letter.

If you know the person you’re sending the letter to, you can address them with their first name (e.g., Dear John) if you don’t mention their full name(e.g., Dear John Williams).

The Body

The body is the most important part of any letter. The body shouldn’t be a continuous stretch of paragraphs; divide the letter into a few concise paragraphs, each with a clear purpose.

The message in the letter must be crystal clear. You will definitely not like your reader to break their head understanding your letter.

The letter’s opening paragraph will tell if the reader will want to read the letter any further. Introduce yourself and clarify the point of your letter in the first paragraph itself. 

You can also state your mutual connections with the reader for them to understand who you are.

Closing

In the concluding paragraph, add your contact details if the recipient needs to contact you or your team for any further concerns or questions. You can also thank him or her in this part of the letter.

Keep the closing statements as short as possible, not more than two sentences.

Complimentary Closing

Add a short complimentary remark that marks the end of your letter. There are a lot of options, but choose the one that reflects your relationship with the recipient. 

 

Signature

Following your complimentary closing line, add your signature.

After the signature, type the full name that you have signed. You can also include your job designation below your name.

[Sender’s Name]

[Sender’s Company Name]

[Sender’s Street Address]

[Sender’s City, State/Province, & Zip/Postal Code]

[Sender’s phone number and email address]

 

[Date]

 

[Recipient’s Name]

[Recipient’s Company Name]

[Recipient’s Street Address]

[Recipient’s Street Address]

[Recipient’s City, State/Province, & Zip/Postal Code]

[Recipient’s phone number and email address]

 

[Subject]

 

[Dear Name],

[Introduction – in this section explain the purpose of the letter, as in why you are writing this letter, and what you hope to achieve from it. If there is any other important information mention it in this section.

[Middle Section –In this section elaborate on the points you mentioned in the first paragraph. You can add several sections like this, depending on how long the letter needs to be.]

[Conclusion – Wrap up your letter in this section on a positive note and summarize the letter in this section. If there is a need you can add your contact details in this section.]

[Sincerely],

[Signature]

[Name of Sender]

 

How to Write Business Email Format?

Subject Line: New [Lead magnet name]

 

Body:

Hi there [name], I’m writing this email today to let you know that we have created a new [lead magnet type] called [lead magnet name].

In this [lead magnet type], you’ll be able to create [describe what your lead magnet covers in 2 to 3 sentences].

[Link]Click on this link to access the [lead magnet name] ⇒[Link]

Kindly refer this to someone else who’ll find this helpful; please forward this email to them.

If you face any problem accessing the [lead magnet type], reply to this email, and we’ll get back to you ASAP and ensure immediate recovery.

 

Thank you,

 

[Your signature]

Professional Letter Format

Sender’s Address

Mention your contact details(address, phone number, email ID) in this section. If you are representing any institution or organization, you can write the letter on their letterhead. 

 

Date

Mention the full date instead of using numerical abbreviations( June 21, 2021)

 

Name / Designation of Addressee

Mention the job title of the person to are writing the letter. 

 

Address of the Addressee

The recipient’s address is the address where the letter will be delivered. Write the complete address as accurately as possible to deliver the letter to the right person.

Salutation

The choice of salutation will be based on how well you know the person and subject of the letter.

If you know the person you’re sending the letter to, you can address them with their first name (e.g., Dear John) if you don’t mention their full name(e.g., Dear John Williams).

Subject

The subject must be short and must reflect the purpose of the letter.

 

Body [Introduction, Content, Conclusion] 

Divide the body of the letter into three parts, introduction, content, and conclusion. Do not write the entire body at a stretch; divide it into paragraphs. 

 

Complimentary Closing Line

Add a short complimentary remark at the end of your letter. Choose the complementary statement depending on your relationship with the recipient. 

 

Signature / Name of the Sender

In the end, put your full signature followed by your full name.

 

Designation of the Sender 

You can add your job title after your name.

How to Write a Formal Letter?

Follow the following steps to write a proper and exemplary formal letter.

  1. Address the concerned person adequately, using Dear Sir/Madam
  2. Write a subject that describes the purpose of the letter.
  3. Write a constructive and compact letter. Mention the reasons in the first paragraph itself. Do not exaggerate the letter unnecessarily. 
  4. Maintain a formal tone in the letter; try to be polite and positive.
  5. Maintain the correct format of the letter and take care of the presentation. 
  6. Mention the address and date correctly, with caution.
  7. Mention the appropriate name and designation of the recipient.
  8. Frame a closing statement with gratitude. 

This is all about writing a well-constructed business letter to help you grow your business by establishing proper communication.