Email Etiquette

There are literally millions of pieces of email sent each day. Unfortunately, many people who send email are not aware of the basic etiquette involved. There are certain basic rules to follow when sending email. In business, it's very important to know about these rules because it's likely that you will lose business if your emails are badly written. Here are some of the basics of email etiquette.

1. Don't send mass email to people who didn't ask to receive it. That's called spamming and is probably the single-most hated thing on the Internet.

2. DON'T USE ALL CAPITAL LETTERS! On the Internet that is considered as shouting. It's also harder to read all capital letters.

3. Keep your messages short. Email is considered to be much less formal than sending a letter. Get to the point as soon as possible.

4. Use the Subject line to let people know what the message is about. Try to make it interesting and short.

5. Spellcheck your email. Since your message is a reflection of your image, it is vitally important that you can make a good impression. Always spell check your email. Also re-read your emails before you send them because no spell checker is perfect.

6. When sending messages to more than one person, use "Bcc" facility.
7. If in doubt, don't send it. No one wants to waste time looking at messages that do not need to be sent.

8. Make your email address easy to remember and to type. It is a good idea to provide a link to your email address to make it easier for your customer to respond.

9. Use links in your email. Improve the chances of your recipients' reply to your emails by providing them with links to your Web site or specific pages on your site.

10. Nice emails are always appreciated. Saying thank you is always a nice thing to do when you are using email.

11. Don't attach large files (over 50k) without getting permission from your recipient first.

12. Include the whole link. When sending a link to a web address make sure to include "http://" as some email programs require it to link successfully.

13. Don't overuse acronyms such as BTW (By The Way). Not everyone is experienced with the jargon and if they do not understand your email they will simply delete it.

Adapted from "Essential Email" eBook written by Angelo D'Angelo.

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