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Writing the body of the email

In order to write a good email:

Be focussed

A good email should contain only one core theme. This not only helps the recipient to deal with the information;

it also makes storage and retrieval of messages easier. If we want to convey information related to two different topics,

it is better to send two separate emails.

Be concise

Convey only necessary information. Repetitions, long explanations and excessively formal phrases should be avoided.

Brevity saves time for both the sender and the recipient and ideas are conveyed quickly and accurately.

Be correct

Use correct spellings and grammar. Use appropriate vocabulary. The facts, figures and other data sent via email

should be properly verified. Careful attention should be paid to the correctness of names, designations, addresses and so on.

Be clear

The content of an e-mail should be simple and easy to understand. While writing to a person who may not know you personally,

it is important to include a brief introduction. Vague information can only create confusions and misunderstandings.

Take a Be clear quiz here

Use a proper tone

An email is not as formal as a business letter; it is somewhat more direct and conversational in tone. We must maintain professional

formality in our writing style. First person pronouns and direct requests are permissible.

I believe that…
Could you send me the data right away?

Yet, an overly friendly or casual tone should be avoided.

Emails exchanged by team-mates or members of the same organization are often more casual than those sent to outsiders like dealers or clients.

Formatting the body of your email

1. Choose an appropriate font and font size for your emails. Avoid using too many fonts in a single email. It is, however,

acceptable to use different fonts and font sizes to indicate headings and the body of the text.


Take an editing quiz here

2. The text should be neatly spaced out into paragraphs to maintain readability. Paragraphs contain distinct ideas but

they should be linked together by connectors like Also, My second suggestion, As a result, Another, Finally and so on.

3. Bullet points should be used wherever possible.

4. As far as possible, try to limit your text to a single page view; if the reader has to scroll down, it means that your email

is rather long. Long email messages may not be read completely or may not be read at all.

5. Graphics and animation are used to make messages colourful and lively but this is frowned upon in official communication.

Use simple text and avoid fancy effects.

6. ALL CAPS are perceived as shouting and it is thus rude to write an email using all caps. Avoid using short forms and abbreviations as far as possible though some of them are becoming acceptable in internal communication.

IMHO – In my honest opinion or AFAIK – as far as I know.

7. Make sure that names of people are spelled correctly and proper titles are used. Research has proved that

nothing annoys people more than seeing their name misspelt.

Polite closing

External emails are usually concluded with a polite closing such as:

Best / Kind / Warm regards
Yours faithfully
Thanks and regards
All the best

Take an e-mail editing quiz here
Another editing quiz

Signature line

The signature line in an email usually contains the name of the sender. To make it more specific, the sender’s designation

and company name could also be included. Telephone numbers should be provided so that the recipient can call the sender

for immediate clarifications.

Prof. Raksh Zakaria
Department of Botany
Noronha College
91-22-2677 4411

A default signature line can be saved so that you need not type your signature in each email; it will automatically appear

at the end of the body of the message.