Professional email writing is a skill that comes in handy throughout your day-to-day – whether it’s communicating in the professional context, or managing your personal life. Using the right formal email writing format and best practices can get you understood, heard, and better respected.

The good news is that once you have the right examples for the right contexts, you can easily adjust the text to get your message across. Luckily, we’ve rounded up our favorite tips for creating and structuring effective formal emails, with helpful examples and templates.

Let’s dive in!

Formal vs. informal email writing

Formal email writing is utilized in a B2B or B2C scenario, where you’re exchanging professional emails with colleagues, businesses, or partners. Informal email writing is the style you’d likely use when corresponding with a friend or family member, or even a quick email to a colleague.

When you’re emailing a friend, there’s less on the line if you get your words or meaning wrong. But when writing a business email there is much more at stake. A crucial mistake could hurt your reputation or wreck an incredible business opportunity.

That’s why we’ve decided to cover the best practices of formal email writing, so that you can get it right every time.

We’ll review the ins and outs of email structure, different email formats you can use, as well as short email templates that you can use in various scenarios. Keep reading to learn how to write the perfect email.

email writing example

Basic formal & professional email structure

Before we get into different email templates, it’s important to know how to build an email yourself. For the most part, every email, regardless of its contents, will follow the same structure with the same basic elements. You should get to know these elements in order to ensure proper and effective email writing as a whole.

The basic elements of professional email writing:

  1. Your email address
  2. Subject line
  3. Email opening
  4. Email body
  5. Email ending
  6. Email sign-off
  7. Email signature, or “footer”

Now let’s break these down, one by one:

1. Start with a professional email address

Your email address is often out of your control. If you work for a company, or operate under the umbrella of a brand, your email address will likely include the company or brand name domain.

For example, the emails in WiseStamp are all in the following format: [employee_name] This ensures that we all have a professional business email address. Since only the owner of can issue email addresses under that domain name, this ensures our emails appear legitimate.

Imagine if each employee had a random Gmail address like [name] Anyone can create that email, which would make it suspicious. Email open rates are first and foremost dependent on trust, so make sure you have a trustworthy email address—otherwise suffer very low open rates.

If you are a freelancer professional, working separately from an established brand, consider buying a domain name for your personal brand. You can look up available domains on Google domain registrar.

2. Email subject lines

Your subject line will be the single most important element in your formal email writing. It is the first thing your recipient will see, so your goal here is to convince them that your email is a safe, relevant, and high priority (in that order). If you don’t succeed in doing that, your email may never be opened, and any effort you put into the rest of the email elements will go to waste.

Your subject line will depend on the purpose or content of your email, but overall, you want it to be something engaging enough for a recipient to click on.

Email writing subject line guidelines:

  • Be clear and specific: Avoid using generic or clickbait subject lines that say little or make unrealistic promises, like “Find out how to double your business in a week!”
  • Be original: Avoid the overused subject line templates you find on the internet. Instead, make original subject lines that are relevant, personal, and concise.
  • Add relevance: Address something that the recipient will recognize, like an acquaintance’s name or an article, show or book they appeared on.

Studies have shown that personalized subject lines are 26% more likely to be opened. You also want to tailor your email subject line to your email goal, whether it’s a sales email, a personal email, a newsletter, or something else. Think of 3-4 refined options then narrow them down to which will likely be most appropriate.

Best email subject line for cold sales

3. Email opening

The next most important way to hook a recipient into your email is by writing a strong email opening line. Like your subject line, the email opening is mostly used as another filtering stage for most people. If it fails to meet the promise made in the subject line, your readers will bail.

Therefore, it’s extremely important to state your main point in 1 to 2 paragraphs, tops. When you clearly convey your request or question, and your reader feels it’s relevant and interesting, they’ll continue reading your email. If you manage to get them to stay beyond this point, then in most cases, they’ll reply to your email. Good for you!

professional email greeting examples

Email writing opening guidelines:

  • Address your recipient by their preferred name: Look up an article they’ve written or their LinkedIn page for reference. Some people will use their full name or their nickname accordingly. For example David might go by Dave, or Anastasia goes by Ana.
  • Establish a connection: In your email, reference a personal experience that involves the recipient, like an article or a news piece you’ve read about them, or a conversation you had with an acquaintance.
  • Match the opening with the subject line: Your opening message has to mirror the promise made in the subject line because this is how the reader determines whether your email is relevant or not. If you don’t connect the subject line to the opening, readers may get confused or even assume that you’re using clickbait.
  • Get to the point fast: Tell your reader why you reached out and what’s in it for them.
email opening lines

4. Email body

The body of your email is where you get into your main message. Whether you’re composing an email to establish a new business connection or just following up on a meeting, the body of your email should be detailed enough that the reader isn’t confused, but also brief and to the point. No one wants to sit and read a long-winded email when they have dozens of other unattended messages in their inbox.

Email body writing guidelines:

  • Be concise and detail only what’s needed to get your point across.
  • Use words that convey (authentic) positive personal emotions, like “glad,” “excited,” “intrigued,” and “confident.”
  • Use the word “because” when asking for something. It’s been scientifically shown that people are more easily convinced to do something if told why, and even more so if the reason is important to them.
  • Show, don’t tell. If you can’t explain something in a few words, see if you can add a screenshot, a video, or a link that explains it better.
  • Use headings to split long content into sub-topics. If you can’t avoid writing a long email, make sure to break it up into subsections with headings. This will help your time-scarce readers to scan and find their points of interest.
  • Add your concrete request or question in bold text. To best ensure your readers do not miss the most important piece of content (i.e. your request or question), add it to a separate line, in bold. You can also use a different color, if that works for your brand. Just be sure to avoid light shades for a high contrast between the text and the white background. Oh, and once you pick a color—stick to it throughout your email!

5. Email ending

After you’ve addressed all your main points in the body of your email, you’ll want to add a respectful and brief conclusion. You can either invite your recipient to reach out for more questions, wish them success, or ask a question. It all depends on the motive for your email. If it was a long email it could also be a good idea to gently reiterate your main request, question, or motivation.

6. Email sign-off

When closing your email, choose a suitable email sign-off. There are different sign-offs you can use for each occasion, such as “best regards,” “sincerely,” or “with love.” Use your best judgement on which to use that best suits your email content and recipient. For example, you obviously wouldn’t want to send the last one to your manager!


A cool tip you can apply is to add a handwritten signature sign off.
A handwritten signature give your recipient the feeling that you gave the email special attention and a personal touch. You can create one here.

cool signoff for creative email signature
Make it yours
Creative email signature with GIF hand sign off and custom button

Your email signature (or footer) is your wave goodbye, and the way you do it seals the impression you’ve made up to this point. Make this moment memorable, organized, and aesthetic, and you can get some extra credit and a positive attitude from your reader. A messy, disorganized signature is at best an opportunity lost, and at worst, a discredit to your image.

Consider creating a professional email signature to nail a positive lasting impression. Use the simple text email signature we all used back when email started at your discretion. Whichever you choose, be sure to include all your professional and contact information. You should also add links to your website, social media sites you are most active in, or a landing page.

Professional formal email examples: specific formats for specific goals & uses

To better understand how all the elements of an email work together in different types of emails, let’s look at some templates. These letters are suitable for a number of email scenarios, so tweak the content to make it more relevant to your needs.

See our examples of the most common email writing formats:

Apology letters samples:
Sample business emails (B2B and B2C):
Information inquiry letter samples:
Request email samples – professional email asking for something:
Work update email samples:
Confirmation vs rejection email samples:

Thank you email

A thank you email is usually one that you’ll send after previous communication with someone. You might want to thank them for their help on a project, for fulfilling your personal request that you previously sent, for a job interview, or even for something as simple as taking a phone call or a meeting.

When composing a thank you email, you don’t want it to be too long, so get straight to the point. Also, this type of email isn’t always necessary, and might even clutter up the inbox of someone who is very busy, so consider whether or not it will be useful for you before you click “Send” on a thank you message.

Thank you email for work done or service rendered

Hi [name]

Thank you so much for [action they did] It was such a pleasure to work with you, and I’m look forward to the next opportunity to work together again.

Please don’t hesitate to contact me if I can provide any additional information.

Best regards,

[name and job title]

Thank you email for a job interview

Dear [name of hiring manager],

I enjoyed speaking with you the other day during our interview for the [position title] at [company name]. The job appears to be an ideal match for my skills, ambitions, and interests.

The innovative approach to the corporate culture within the [job field] world confirmed my wish to work at your firm.

I will bring my engineering skills, assertiveness, and ability to engage others to work in a cooperative way within the [name of department] department.

Thank you, again, for your time, and I look forward to hearing your thoughts.

Best Regards,


professional thank you email example

Formal letter of appreciation

Dear Mr./Mrs. [name],

I would like to formally recognize all the hard work and dedication you’ve put into completing [project/task]. Due to your consistent efforts, the project is what it is today and that led to the positive results we were hoping for. 

On behalf of [company name, board members, etc.], we would like to formally thank you for your hard work and we would like to let you know that we highly value your contribution and your continued dedication to your job.

We are very grateful to have you as a member of our team and we wish to continue to see you thrive within our organization.

Best regards,

[Name and job title]

Letter of complaint

Dear [name],

On January 30th, 2020, I made a reservation at your restaurant located at 1234 Mulberry Lane for a birthday dinner for four people. This letter is intended to bring certain issues to your attention.

Unfortunately, we did not enjoy our dinner due to the fact that the food was very slow to arrive and we received the wrong dishes. It’s understandable that it was a busy time at your restaurant, but the quality of the service was not as expected.

To resolve this problem, I would appreciate it if you could provide compensation in the form of a gift voucher or discount on a future meal. 

I’m looking forward to your reply.

With regards,

[Your name]

Cover letter

It used to be common to send your cover letter and CV as an attachment to your email. However, it’s becoming a lot more accepted to use the email itself as your cover letter and simply attach your CV.

When sending a cover letter email, make sure you’re using formal language, addressing the right person such as HR or the hiring manager, you use a relevant subject and opening line, and the body of your email demonstrates why you’d be a perfect fit for the job and company. Hiring managers likely receive dozens of email cover letters, be sure to make sure yours stands out and doesn’t drag on too long.

Cover letter example

Dear hiring manager [name],

I’m very interested while reading the job posting for the position of [job title]. I believe that the experience I have strongly match the responsibilities of this position. I am enthusiastic about submitting my application for the position.

My most recent position was at [company name], where I was a [job title name ]. Additionally, I recently participated in a [mention an accomplishment in your last job that is relevant]

I have attached my resume to this email. Thanks to it, I believe you will learn more about my experience, education, and achievements.

Looking forward to hearing from you,

[Your name]

Reminder email

The format of this type of email message will be different depending on whether it’s your first time reaching out to someone, or the second or third time. The main difference is that the first contact email has to include details that provide context.

When writing a reminder email or follow-up email you don’t need to provide a broad context. Instead, briefly remind your recipients of what you’ve both already agreed on, as it might have simply may been forgotten or placed low in their backlog.

This little push can go a long way in shortening your timetables and making sure you’re items are prioritized. Most people appreciate the reminder and respect you for being steadfast.

Reminder email sample

Hi [name],

I’m sure your schedule is very busy, so this email is simply to remind you of your upcoming interview with [name] who is a candidate for [name of position].

The interview will be at [time] on [date] in [location].

Please let me know if there’s anything I can help you with to prepare to interview this candidate.


[Your name]

Apology letters samples

From time to time we all make mistakes, and we all get something wrong. Sometimes our mistakes hurt others, cause them discomfort, or make them frustrated. In these situations, it’s usually the right call to simply apologize.

Apologizing is something that must be sincere or you risk offending the person further. It’s always the best approach to express genuine regret.

But regardless of whatever you truly feel, be very careful to only use words that express empathy for whomever it is you’re apologizing to. Do not lay any responsibility on them, and do not give excuses.

Letter of apology for a client

Dear [client’s name],

Please accept my deepest apologies on behalf of [company or business name] for the poor experience you had at our restaurant.

I want to thank you for bringing these issues to my attention and please know that we are making every effort to correct our mistakes so events like these don’t happen in the future.

As a token of our apology, please accept a gift card in the amount of $50.00 that can be used at our restaurant in the future.

I hope to greet you again soon at [company or business name].

Yours sincerely,

[Your name and job title]

Apology letter from boss

Dear Mr./Mrs. [boss’s family name],

I’m writing to you to express my regret for my behavior on [date] in regard to [event]. I would like to apologize for my words and actions and reassure you that such an event will not happen again.

On the date in question, I got into a verbal altercation with the head waiter about the scheduling, and this led to my inexcusable behavior. I have already apologized to [name of colleague], and I wanted to assure you that I will work to improve my reactions and behavior in the future.

I’d be happy to meet with you to speak about the incident further if you have any outstanding concerns.

I am sorry again.


[Your name]

Apology mail for manager

Dear [manager’s name],

I owe you an apology for providing you with the wrong information on [date] regarding [event]. It was not my intention to provide inaccurate or misleading information, and I apologize for any inconvenience that this careless mistake may have caused you.

I will be sure to be more thoughtful in the future and learn from this incident.

Please do not hesitate to share any thoughts or concerns with me. I’d be glad to discuss this further and make it right. 

Best regards,

[Your name]

Business email writing samples

Introduction email to a client (sample email to approach a new client)

Dear [Sir/Madame/Name],

I would like to take a moment to introduce myself and my company. My name is [name] and I am a [job title] at [company name]. Our company provides customers with cutting-edge technology for all their email signature needs.

At [company name], there are a number of services we can offer, such as [short list of services]. Our employees are also highly dedicated and are willing to help you with your every need. 

I’d love the opportunity to speak or meet with you to discuss your needs further and to tell you more about how [company name] can help you succeed. You can contact me at [phone number] with any questions you may have.

Thank you,

[Your name]

Proposal submission email

Dear [Name],

Please find enclosed to this email the proposal you requested regarding your website audit.

We hope that you will find this proposal helpful and insightful and that it meets your expectations. Of course, if you would like to make any adjustments or go in a different direction, feel free to let us know and we’d be happy to discuss with you.

Thank you for entrusting [your company name] with your website audit, and we hope to hear back from you soon.

Best regards,

[Name and job title]

Sending quotation email

Dear [customer name],

We’d like to thank you for sending in your inquiry on [date] regarding a quotation for auditing your website.

Based on an initial estimation, we are happy to offer you a quotation based on your requests. Please find the official pricing quote attached to this email. Note that this quotation includes [list of services], but should you want additional services, we’d be happy to discuss it further with you and provide another quotation.

Please do not hesitate to get back to us with any questions about the quotation or our services.

Yours sincerely,

[Your name and job title]

Email asking for feedback

Hi [customer name],

We really appreciate you using our services on [date] and we’d like to get your feedback on your experience.

Please follow the link [insert link] to complete a short survey regarding your experience. This survey shouldn’t take any longer than 2 minutes and it will help us improve our products and services in the future.

We want to thank you in advance for your time and hope that you enjoyed your experience with [company name].


[Name and/or company name]

Inquiry letter samples

Email of inquiry requesting information

Dear [name],

This email is to inquire about the website audit services you posted on your website. 

As I understand, you offer services to audit businesses’ websites and provide personalized insight into what improvements can be made. I’d like to request further information with regard to your pricing as well as the scope of the work that will be performed, including specific services that can be expected.

I look forward to receiving your response.

Best regards,

[Your name and job title]

Email asking for a status update

Hi [name],

I wanted to check in and check on the status of the website audit project that is due on [date]. 

Please let me know where you’re at with the project and don’t hesitate to let me know if you require any assistance from my end.



Request email samples: professional email asking for something

A personal request email is usually straight to the point and involves a sender asking a recipient for something. It could be anything from connecting on a professional network, asking to set up a meeting, or even requesting a professional introduction. Following a personal request email, a recipient may decide to either accept or reject what the sender is asking for. In this type of email, it’s important to be very clear with what you’re asking for.

Sick leave mail format

Hi [Name of manager/supervisor],

I am writing to request sick leave from [date range]. I will be undergoing surgery and at the recommendation of my doctor, I need to be off of work for 2 weeks in order to recover. I hope to be back at work on [date]. 

Please let me know if you have any questions.


[Your name]

Letter asking for a discount from the supplier

Dear [name of the supplier],

Thank you for sending over your product catalog. We are very much interested in purchasing [name of the product(s)] from you and would like to get a quote for these items.

Additionally, we are hoping that this will lead to a prolonged partnership between the two of us. Therefore, we are kindly requesting that you provide us with your best possible price since we would like to use your goods on a permanent basis.

Thank you for your understanding.

With regards,

[Your name and job title]

Ask for a raise

Dear [Name of Manager/supervisor],

I have greatly enjoyed working for [company name] over the last 3 years. During these years, I feel that I have become a valuable member of your team and I have contributed to projects in a significant way. 

Since working here, I have accomplished: [list accomplishments].

As an employee, I think I have outperformed the goals set for me. As a result, I would like to have the opportunity to discuss increasing my salary so that it matches my current performance. Please let me know when is a good time for you to meet so that we can discuss this further.

Once again, I am grateful to be part of an organization that provides me with unique challenges and opportunities to continuously learn and grow.

Best regards,

[Your name]

Email your boss about a problem (asking for help)

Dear Mr./Mrs. [name of boss],

I would like to bring to your attention the incident that occurred at [location] on [date] at [time].

I was deeply upset by the actions of [coworker/event]. I tried to speak with them, but this did not lead to any sort of resolution and now I feel as if our professional relationship at work is strained as a result.

I am turning to you for assistance with the matter and I hope that you are able to come up with a solution that neither of us has thought of yet. 

Thank you for taking the matter seriously and please let me know if you have any questions or concerns.

Yours sincerely,

[Your name]

Email to schedule a meeting

Hi [name],

Thanks for getting in touch with us about our product. I’d be glad to set up a meeting in order to give you more information, answer your questions, and show you how it can work for your business. Does [date] at [time] work for you?

I look forward to meeting with you soon!


[Your name]

Work update email

Email to the client sharing the status of the project

Dear [name of client],

We’d like to keep you updated regarding the progress we’ve made on our project. Please have a look at the tasks we’ve accomplished below and do not hesitate to get back to me with any questions or concerns you may have.

Key highlights and updates:

  • [list them]

Tasks accomplished this week:

  • [list them]

Tasks to do next week:

  • [list them]

Best regards,

[Your name]

Email the boss about work progress

Hi [name of boss],

I am happy to let you know that the project [name of project] that was assigned to me on [date] is now nearing completion. Due to the hard work of our team, the project is expected to be completed on time. Based on the pace of our work, I expect to have the entire project completed by [date].

The remaining elements of this project to be completed are as follows:

  • [List them 1]
  • [List them 2]
  • [List them n]

Thank you for your continued support and guidance and please do not hesitate to get in touch with any questions.


[Your name]

Confirmation vs rejection email samples

You might get an email confirmation after you purchase something online, or you can also reply to a formal email confirming receipt of an email attachment, a meeting time, or a company update. A rejection email is similar in that it might reject the item that was proposed in an email, in which case you’d let the sender know.

Acceptance email

Dear Mr./Mrs. [name],

It is my great pleasure to inform you that I will be accepting your offer for employment as [job title] with [company name]. The goals for this role that you described are in line with my personal career aspirations, and I hope to be able to learn and grow in this role.

As discussed in our previous meeting, my salary will be [salary] and I will be starting on [date].

I appreciate all the time you took to make the interviews as seamless as they were, and I look forward to working with you soon.


[Your name]

“This is to inform you that” letter

Dear Mr./Mrs. [name],

This is to inform you that your business proposal [title of the proposal] has unfortunately been rejected by our committee. While we did like your idea, unfortunately, the costs involved reach well beyond our budget for this quarter. 

We wish you the best of luck in your future endeavors and encourage you to submit additional proposals if you have others that are aligned with our goals.

Best of luck,

[Your name and job title]

Job rejection email

Dear [name of hiring manager],

This is to inform you that I will not be proceeding in the interview process for [job title] with [company name]. I would like to formally withdraw my candidacy.

At this time, I have accepted a position with another company, so I am no longer in search of employment. However, I would like to sincerely thank you for taking the time to meet with me and for being attentive to my questions about the role. 

It was a pleasure meeting with you and I wish you luck in finding the right candidate for the job.

Best regards,

[Your name]

Aesthetics of a formal email

Before you even get started on the content of your email, you want to make sure the aesthetic is appealing and not too out of the ordinary.

Of course, you want to capture the attention of your recipient, but you also want to appear professional, so keep the Comic Sans font out of the equation. What sort of aesthetics should you pay attention to in a formal email? Let’s take a look.

Choice of Font

Don’t start reinventing the wheel here. It’s better to go with a safe bet instead of a creative option when selecting a font. Choose a font that’s easy to read and skim, since if you’re sending a longer email it’s possible your recipient will just skim its contents. Therefore, you want to font to be clear and the letters to be far enough apart.

We suggest going with fonts like Georgia, Verdana, Arial, or Times New Roman.

formal email fonts

Font size

You don’t want your recipient to have to squint to read your email, but your text also shouldn’t appear as if it’s yelling either. Depending on the font you go with you might need to tweak the sizing a little, but in general, font size 12 is what you should be using. You can use size 10 or 11 as well, just make sure it doesn’t look too small before sending your email.

How do I improve my email writing skills?

There are a number of ways you can make your emails shine, and you don’t need to be a professional writer to do it. In fact, there are a few small areas you can focus on to make your emails clearer and more well-received. Here are a few things you should keep in mind when composing an email:

1. Optimize your email subject lines

Your subject line is the first thing a recipient sees when they receive your email. Therefore, it’s important that it’s optimized as much as possible. Keep these tips in mind when coming up with your subject line:

  • Keep it short to no more than 40 characters
  • Make it personal, use the recipient’s name if you have it
  • Use a call to action, like “let’s set up a meeting today”
  • Create a sense of urgency, such as “offer to expire soon”

2. Practice summarizing your main point for your email openings

Once you get your recipient to open your email, you don’t want to bore them right away. You have to keep things interesting, relevant, and straight to the point. That’s why it’s crucial to put your main point somewhere in the first sentence, or at least the first paragraph. 

While your opening line can be something general like “thank you for taking the time to meet with me,” the very next line should be something more powerful. Whether you ask for the results of a meeting, make a proposal, or initiate a follow-up meeting, this first sentence sets the tone of the rest of the email so the reader knows exactly what the subject is and what to expect from the rest of your message.

3. Research the correct email etiquette to use for your most common scenarios

When sending emails, especially formal or professional emails for work, it’s important to maintain email etiquette. Since many of us answer our emails on our phones while on the go, it’s tempting to reply to emails as we would a text message, but that’s not good practice.

4. Proofread for typos and grammar mistakes

Finally, always review your email before you click “Send.” Make sure your email is free of typos, punctuation errors (and that you’re not, for example, using too many exclamation points), and that your syntax is correct.

Also: don’t always rely on spell-checkers. While they’ve come a long way thanks to AI, they don’t always pickup errors where words are spelt correctly, yet used in the wrong context.

The best way to do this is to read your email out loud before sending, especially if it’s an important message to a superior or a client, as emails with grammar mistakes can potentially have a negative impact.

Final Word

There are countless reasons for needing a formal email writing template. If we didn’t cover every single scenario here, we hope that you know at least have a better idea of what constitutes a good formal email. Using our tips and examples, you’ll be able to compose better emails that get you the results you want.