1. Think about the relationship
How you write to your friend is not the same as how you write to your boss. Be careful in how you address them. If they start their message with “dear”, make sure to reply in the same way. If they are more informal then you can match this. Respond naturally, but appropriately.
2. Write a topic sentence
You want the reader to know what your email is about from the first line. This makes it easier to understand what you’re writing about and sets up the rest of the email. You want the message to be as easy to understand as possible, so the recipient will understand what you need and reply .
3. Write a meaningful subject
The subject line of your email is the first thing that anybody reads. It is crucial that they know what your email is about and whether it is urgent. A subject line that is easy to understand will make it more likely that your email is read and replied to.
4. Be polite
This is absolutely crucial, no matter who you are writing to. It is very important to be polite as any perceived insult could hurt your relationship with your reader.
5. Use an appropriate structure
How you structure your email is very important. This makes it easier for your reader to understand your message – not just why you are writing, but also your key points, what needs to happen and by when. A badly-structured email may annoy your reader, making them less likely to want to help.
6. Remember to proofread
We receive many emails every day and it can be tempting to rush through them, but an extra minute checking your email can save you hours later! As well as looking unprofessional, if the recipient needs to email you back to clarify something, it will cost you much more time Check for grammar, spelling and punctuation errors, as well as making sure your information is correct!
7. Identify yourself clearly
Always attach an email signature. If you have an official position within a company or organisation make sure to include it. It lets your reader get a clearer idea of who you are. If you met someone briefly, remind them who you are and how you met in your opening paragraph.
8. Keep your message focused
In the modern world, people are busy. Try and keep your emails as concise as possible. Say what you need to, leave out anything you don’t need and let them know what you need them to do (and what you will do next).