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In today’s fast-paced digitally connected world it can be too easy to quickly type out a reply to an email, only to realise after you click send, that your response may not be representing your business in the best light.
Communicating well and always making a good impression with your customers is essential if you plan to stay in business, but you don’t have time to agonise for hours over every reply to ensure it says what you mean it to say in a professional and meaningful manner. You don’t have to if you remember to keep the following tips in mind as you craft your online messages.
1. Only Use Work Email Addresses
Never send out professional emails using your personal email address. When communicating via email, you should set up a professional email address that will always remain a work only address. Not only are you creating a more professional atmosphere, but you are also creating a barrier between work and your personal life.
2. Always Use the Subject Line
Subject lines are used to state the intention of the email. Plus, they look professional and are more likely to be taken seriously.
A well thought out subject line will help ensure your email gets read and may even help to keep it out of the spam folder.
It’s also essential to address the recipient in the same way you would as if you were meeting in real life. A brief greeting – such as Hi, Hello, or Good Morning – followed by their full name should do the trick.
3. The Importance of Prompt Replies
A good rule of thumb to keep for responding promptly to emails is to reply in the space of 24 hours, but sooner if possible.
4. Don’t Spam
Spamming is annoying and a big timewaster for everyone. Plus, in many countries, it’s illegal to send off random emails to unsolicited addresses, and the practice often comes with stiff penalties. Your email will also likely go unread as the email service algorithm promptly sends your message straight to the spam folder.
5. Review Your Content Before Sending
It’s always a good idea to check your content for typos, and grammatical errors as these can cast your business in an unprofessional light. If you’ve written the email when your emotions are high you should also take the time to consider your wording, as a hastily written reply may be one you later regret sending.
It does take a little more time to proof-read your emails, but ensuring you always come off as a professional is well worth the effort. One of our secret weapon as a digital agency is Grammarly, we use it all the time for all our content, blogs, social media, emails and much more.
6. Urgent Emails Should Always be Urgent
Never use URGENT flags on your email unless it really is a pressing matter and not just a strategy to draw attention to the email. Overuse this feature, and you will become a victim of the “boy who cried wolf” syndrome, as your recipients learn to disregard your emails or send them straight to the deleted folder.
7. Be Concise
All business owners are running on tight schedules, but it’s important to remember that so too are your customers, so brevity is vital in every email you send. As a professional courtesy, keep each email to no more than three paragraphs, with a maximum of three or four sentences in each.
8. Use a Simple Design
However much you want to emphasise your design skills, bold fonts and colours have no place in a professional email. Keep your design simple and visually easy to digest.
9. Know Your Audience
Craft your email in a way that communicates the level of respect and formality to which the recipient is accustomed. If the person is polite and formal, then be sure to use the same tone in your message. The same goes for someone who would respond well to a more informal, relaxed tone of voice.
10. End with a Signature
It’s frustrating for the recipient if they need to contact you in any other way other than email, and they must go hunting for your contact details. To ensure a quick response always end your emails with a signature that includes your contact information such as your name and title, and other ways you can be contacted such as your mobile or landline number.
There are great websites that offer email signature creation that fits your brand, we personally use HubSpot Free Email Signature, but there are others such as WiseStamp, HTMLSig. The most important thing is to have a professional email signature.
Email has grown to be one of the primary channels of communications in the business world so maintaining proper etiquette is essential to present your business as a professional and trustworthy organisation. If your business needs any email service get in touch with us for a free 15min brief consultation call.