In this lesson we are going to learn how to write and structure a business letter in English.
This lesson, as all lessons here has been written by a ENGLISH, English teacher. Therefore what you learn is normal practice in the UK, but might not be correct in other English speaking Countries.
What type of words to use
You should always try to write a business letter in the same style as you would talk in a business conversation. This can be difficult for non-native speakers, but in this lesson we have separated the different sections.
Always start the letter with Dear.
Dear Mr Brown – for a man
Dear Miss Brown – for a single woman
Dear Mrs Brown – for a married woman
Dear Ms Brown – if you don’t know if the woman is single or married
Dear Richard – this is a less formal style, but still acceptable.
If you do not know the name of the person you are writing to;
Dear Sir or Madam
Never use both first name and surname name – Dear Richard Huggings.
Starting the letter
Try to start your letters by referring to why you are writing to them –
Further to your letter dated 13 August…….
Thank you for your recent telephone order……..
With reference to your advert in the newspaper……
It was a pleasure to meet you last week……..
I would like to confirm the booking of……….
I am interested in finding out more information regarding……
Try NOT to start a letter with – I am writing to you because…..
The main body of the letter
Keep this section short and to the point. Once you have written the letter, reread it and if it is unclear, write it again.
Please find enclosed the documents….
The requested paperwork is enclosed…..
Enclosed you will find…..
Remember to list the enclosed items at the very bottom of the letter. See example for more details.
Closing the letter
I look forward to hearing from you shortly…..
If I can be of any further help, please feel free to contact me…..
I hope we can settle this matter soon…..
I await your response in due course …..
If you need anymore information please contact me……
Ending business letters
Yours faithfully – if you do not know the name of the person you are writing to.
Yours sincerely – if you know the name of the person you are writing to.
Do you use any other phrases here such as, kind regards, best wishes, many thanks etc. This is a business letter and you only need faithfully of sincerely.