Email etiquette or netiquette refers to the principles of behavior that one should use when writing or answering email messages

Some basic email etiquette you need to observe include;

  • A clear and direct subject line.
    • Examples of a good subject line include “Meeting date changed,” “Quick question about your presentation,” or “Suggestions for the proposal.”
    • People often decide whether to open an email based on the subject line.
  • Use a professional email address.
    • Always use your company email address. But if you use a personal email account–whether you are self-employed or just like using it occasionally for work-related correspondences —you should be careful when choosing that address
  • Include a signature block.
    • Provide your reader with some information about you. You also can add a little publicity for yourself, but don’t go overboard with any sayings or artwork.”
    • Use the same font, type size, and color as the rest of the email
  • Use professional salutations.
    • Don’t use laid-back, colloquial expressions like, “Hey you guys,” “Yo,” or “Hi folks.”
    • The relaxed nature of our writings should not affect the salutation in an email.
    • Hey is a very informal salutation and generally it should not be used in the workplace. And Yo is not okay either. Use Hi or Hello
  • Always reply to your emails–even if the email wasn’t intended for you.
    • It’s difficult to reply to every email message ever sent to you, but you should try to.
    • A reply isn’t necessary but serves as good email etiquette, especially if this person works in the same company or industry as you.
  • Add the email address last.
    • “You don’t want to send an email accidentally before you have finished writing and proofing the message.
  • Double-check that you’ve selected the correct recipient.
    • Pay careful attention when typing a name from your address book on the email’s “To” line. “It’s easy to select the wrong name, which can be embarrassing to you and to the person who receives the email by mistake.”
  • Keep your fonts classic.
    • For business correspondence, keep your fonts, colors, and sizes classic.
    • The cardinal rule: Your emails should be easy for other people to read.
    • Generally, it is best to use 10- or 12- point type and an easy-to-read font such as Arial, Calibri, or Times New Roman.
    • As for color, black is the safest choice.
  • Keep tabs on your tone.
    • Tone is easy to misread without the context you’d get from vocal cues and facial expressions.
    • Accordingly, it’s easy to come off as more abrupt that you might have intended –you meant “straightforward,” they read “angry and curt.”
    • To avoid misunderstandings, read your message out loud before hitting send. “If it sounds hard to you, it will sound hard to the reader.
    • For best results, avoid using negative words (“failure,” “wrong,” or “neglected”), and always say “please” and “thank you.”

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