Components of a Business Letter
If you want to create a comprehensive and formal business letter, there are some components that you should know.
Take your time in learning the basics. Follow the parts and have a great content.
When you are involved in a business, communication is very important. There are times when you have to deal with business associates and other companies in a formal way. This is where business letter can come in handy. This is different from a personal letter and you have to comply with some requirements. Ideally, the letter should be written or printed on an 8.5” by 11” unlined stationery but for longer letters, the legal size can be used. It all depends on the demands of the business.
The business letter can take different formats and this includes the following:
- Block letter
- Alternative block letter
- Simplified business letter
Any of these of formats can be used and you’re free to choose the one that will suit your needs. You can choose to follow the format used by others in the office or you can pick one that suits your style and requirements. Writing a business letter is very much different from writing personal letters or reports. You need to state your main business and the subject matter.
On the very first sentence, you have to inform the recipient what the letter is all about. The purpose should be stated at once because businesspeople don’t have much time to goof around.
The business letter has six parts – heading, inside address, greeting, body, complimentary close, and signature line. The heading should contain your return address and the date should be written as well. Leave a space between the heading and the date. In a business where the stationery already contains the return address, you can start with the date.
The second part is the inside address. You have to include the complete name and title of the recipient and the address. This is followed by the greeting or salutation. Usually, the letter begins with ‘Dear’ and it is followed by the last name of the recipient. You can also use titles with name and the greeting should end with the colon (:).
The body is the most important part because this is where you will state your purpose. It is composed of several paragraphs. Get to the point and stop fooling around. The complimentary close ends with the comma (,). It should be polite and short. The signature line is where you will put the name of the person who wrote the letter. You will have to place the title (e.g. Ms., Mrs., or Mr.) and don’t forget to affix the signature. The block style is very popular today and most businesses are using it.