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13 Jun 10 How to Write a Business Letter?

Writing a good professional letter is far different from writing a nice warm personal letter. Business letter has its own set of rigid rules, format and vocabulary. Standard professional phrases and use of professional tone are the basics of a good business letter. Follow the below guidelines while crafting a business letter.

A standard business letter can be broadly divided into 5 major parts – Heading, Date, Opening, Body, and Closing.

Start your letter with the date in the left hand upper corner. Date is very important since it determines the priority of action and it’s also helpful for the future reference. Place the date immediately below the letterhead specifications.

Then put the name of the recipient, his or her job title, name of the company and its address. These should always be written in the left side. As for example,

Mr. Jack Hill

Senior Manager

Rainbow Fabrics

87 Lindsay Mall Road

Sydney 2006

Include a salutation in the upper left corner. Commonly it’s addressed as ‘Dear’ followed by the name of the person. The person can be also addressed as ‘Mr.’ and ‘Mrs.’ or ’Ms’. If the recipient’s name is unknown, refer the concerned person as Sir/Madam.

Now come to the body of the letter. It should be crisp, courteous and clear. It should have a beginning, mid and end. Purpose of the letter should be effectively communicated in the first sentence. If the letter is written is response to any advertisement or telephonic conversation or a personal recommendation that source of reference should be communicated in the first line. Put space between the paragraphs. Avoid indent. Don’t fill the page with unnecessary detail. Even if the length remains short communicate intended message effectively. Do not use heavy and fancy words. Reader won’t waste time in referring to a dictionary while reading the letter. Keep the language simple and tone formal.

Closing of the letter defines your intention. Sign off while thanking the reader. End with sign off languages like – Yours faithfully’ or ‘Yours Sincerely’ followed by a comma. Type your full name beneath the body in the left side and place your job title below that. Once the print is done, put your signature below the printed name.

Once the letter is ready check and re-check the letter for spelling and grammar. A poorly crafted letter with spelling and grammatical errors always leaves poor impression on the reader. Also verify accuracy of the letter by someone else besides spell and grammar check command of Microsoft Word Processor.

Preferably use letterheads. Use formal fonts instead of fancy fonts. Font size should be not more than 12 and black in color.

That’s all you need to take care of while writing a good business letter.

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