How to write a formal email

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Written By DannyPalmer

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A formal email is that which you send to someone that you do not know or holds a position in authority.  A university professor, a public official or a company that you trade with are examples of recipients of formal emails.  A workplace is a formal environment thus communication by email to your boss or colleagues should be formal even if you interact with them casually.

These are the elements that make an email to become formal.

Subject line

A subject line is a text that a reader sees in the email inbox.   The target reader may decide not to read an email if the subject line misleads or incomplete due to missing information.   An extremely formal email needs a detailed subject line but without making it too long.

Below is a sample of a formal email subject line.

Formal: Request to Attend Staff Meeting: July 20th, 11.15 am

Informal: Friday Meeting

The difference between formal and informal subject lines is that the former is complete and informative while the casual address barely best book review writing services touches the subject.


A salutation is a direct address to the recipient and should always be in place in a formal message buy you can skip it for informal notes.  Salutation can address one person, few individuals or a group that you mention in the collective name such, professors, students, nurses, etc.

These are a few examples of salutation in a formal email.

  • Dear students
  • Dear Doctor Jacob
  • Dear Human Resources Manager
  • To whom it may concern

An informal salutation does not have the formality and will address the recipient in a casual tone. For example

Hey Class!

 Hell Mark,


Writers of a formal email should start by introducing themselves because the reader is not someone you know. It also requires some formality even when the addressee is known.

An example of a formal email opening can be something like this.

My name is Sasha Ross. I supervise the branch office for ABC Company Ltd. This message is to all the technicians.


The body explains the purpose of writing an email. The body should provide the details in a concise and clear way. The reader is not familiar with you or your topic thus you must explain the main point to avoid a situation whereby the reader misunderstands an important point.

Closing /concussion

 The proper way to end a formal email is to create an impression that the reader will remember in the coming days.  It should also remind the readers who you are by including your full name, title when appropriate and contact information.

 Most people start the introduction with the word “Sincerely” because it is popular and safe to use.

Here is an example of a standard way to close a formal email.


Sasha Ross

Supervisor, ABC Company Ltd

[Email Address]

[Phone number]

Always use the first and last name, include any organization on whose behalf you write and the official title of the recipient.

A formal email should be in proper grammar, complete sentences, and official terminology. It should not contain slang, expressions of emotion, abbreviations and contractions.

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