Formal Business Letter Templates and Formats

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A business letter is a skillfully written file that is used for professional communication between two or more parties. Such stakeholders may include employees, clients, and other people or companies that are part of a new or established relationship or agreement. Business letters are also often defined as letters that are used during a business transaction to confirm the details and purpose of the transaction. In business letters, it is not essential for the sender and receiver to know each other. Creating professional business letters can sometimes be a difficult and time-consuming task especially for someone without the relevant skill or experience. As such many people welcome pre-prepared business letter templates that can be easily edit to suit their own needs as this is of major help.

How to write a formal business letter?

Writing business letters are very important. Business letter are used for many purposes which includes requesting information (information letter), providing information (sales letter), ordering good and services (order letter), acknowledgment of order (acknowledgement letter), confirming information (confirmation letter), expressing appreciation (Thank you letter), conveying news (Message Letter). In general businesses letters are very crucial for collaboration.

Block, modified block, and semi-block styles

There the three main styles of business letters:

  • Block Format- The most common layout of a business letter is known as block format. Using this format, the entire letter is left justified and single spaced except for a double space between paragraphs. When writing block letters, no lines are indented.
  • Modified Block Format- Another commonly used letter format is known as the modified block format, in which the body of the letter and the sender's and recipient's addresses are left justified and single-spaced. However, the difference with a Block format, is that in Modified Block format, the date and closing, have a tab to the center point of the letter, and that is where you begin to type. It is more suitable to use this format on less formal occasions.
  • Semi-Block Format- The last and less commonly used letter style is the Semi-Block format. It is like the modified block style except that each paragraph is indented instead of left-justified. Semi-block letters are like 'Modified block letters', with the exception the paragraphs are indented. Modified semi-block business letters are considered a little less formal than full block letters. 

It also serves the purpose of written evidence of the communication between the parties involved. Some of the examples of business letters are memos, circulars, magazines, manuals, etc. Business letters serve the purpose of communication between parties involved in a business deal and can be saved for record-keeping purposes. 

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  • What are the essentials of writing effective business letters?

    • Writing a compelling and refined business letter can be easy if you know the letter's language and style. There are some important qualities that a business letter must-have.
    • A business letter should be self-explanatory. It should be precise, or you can say specifically to the point. It should contain simple language keeping in view the audience. It should be concisely written and should contain accurate information. In addition to this, it must not have any grammatical or spelling errors.
    • There are some other aspects that ensure the quality of a business letter. The consistency in writing style, format, and font style used for writing ensures that the business letter meets the expectations of a wide range of audiences. 
    • Each segment of your letter should have a proper arrangement, beginning with your contact data and that of your recipient's, greeting, the letter's body, salutation, and lastly, your stamp or signature.
    • You best start the letter with a brief introductory paragraph. The letter's body should include your objective, which should not have any unnecessary sentences. 
  • How is business writing unique?

    Writing for a business audience is in general different from writing other types of letters. The language in business letters is unique, technical, and the quality of a letter depends on the (technical) knowledge and experience of the sender. While writing a business letter, it should be kept in mind that the recipient might have limited time to read it, and it should be brief and justify its purpose with relevant and precise details. By following these writing tips while composing a business letter, you can be sure it will be (more) effective.

    What are some common types of business letters?

    An email has taken over as the most widely used type of correspondence, however, some types of business letters are still written on paper. Some of the major types of business letters include information letters, problem letters, sales letters, and goodwill letters. The purpose of sending business letters include employment verification, job offer, business inquiry, job promotion, networking, employee benefits, promotion announcement, reference, resignation, retirement, and welcome back. Depending on the purpose of writing a business letter, the style and formatting can differ slightly, however, the fundamentals of writing a business letter always remain the same.
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