The best email format: What your email signature says about your company
Have you ever received an email that’s practically unreadable? Reams of text, horrible fonts...just too difficult to read. Well, that sender didn’t consider the use of proper email format. A professional email format can make or break an external email and change how an internal message is received.
Email is a powerful business tool, so you need to know how to craft the perfect email. Learn all about how to format emails so they always match your goals.
What is an email format?
An email format is how your email is designed. It speaks to its layout and structure. This includes elements such as image usage, attachments, and the writing form. There are several formats you can use, all coming with different benefits and drawbacks.
For example, HTML is perfect for creating attractive emails with images, videos, and embedded links. Rich text works well for incorporating text formatting like underlines and italics.
Email formatting should also incorporate a professional email signature with accurate contact information. Once you’ve created a relationship with whomever you’re messaging, an email signature helps to build engagement.
How to format emails
Any online guide can teach you how to format emails. But, in most cases, there’s more to formatting than meets the eye. Something as simple as the right email banner size can make all the difference for readability purposes.
You’ll have heard these before, but a quick refresher course never hurts. The most important things to remember when deciding how best to format emails are to:
Begin with an appropriate greeting
Keep paragraphs short and break up blocks of text
Use a consistent tone throughout
End your email with a courteous closing
Use a professional email signature
Keep email body concise and focused
It’s important to keep the email body concise and focused. Make sure your message is clear and easy to understand. Avoid unnecessary information that’ll make a recipient less likely to respond.
Be mindful of the type of email you’re writing too. If it's a formal email, keep the tone professional. If it's an informal email, you can use a more relaxed and conversational tone.
Writing a formal email isn't always necessary
In some cases, an email doesn’t need a formal tone. Just because you’re drafting a professional email doesn't mean you can’t use contractions or abbreviations. Sometimes what's important is that an email is written by a real person for another real person.
Plain text vs HTML email format
HTML and plain text are the most common email format types. Plain text emails are simple and straightforward. They usually don’t contain visual elements and are often used for internal communication.
Plain text format pros
Compatible with all devices
Plain text format cons
Devoid of color, style, and imagery with little formatting control
Difficult to track performance
HTML email format is usually used for marketing and promotional purposes. It is often used to make first contact with calls-to-action (CTAs), but also for fostering personal relationships between business associates.
HTML format pros
HTML can include links with tracking parameters
Much more visual
HTML text cons
HTML can behave differently in different browsers and email clients
CSS code elements can hide viruses
Write your email with purpose
In using the correct email format, it’s important you’re writing with purpose. While this sounds obvious, once you’ve established first contact with a recipient, you don’t want to overload them with marketing speak.
Keep your message concise and to the point, using a friendly and conversational tone. When asking for a response, be specific about what’s needed and make it easy to reply. Your email signature should also include relevant contact details like your email address, phone number, and company information.
Why an email signature is so important
An email format with a signature is important for many reasons. It adds a personal touch to the end of a message, wrapped up in a neat bow. It includes professional touch points with essential contact information.
The signature email format should be professional to reassure readers that your email is genuine and from a real person. An email signature also states the sender's company position, promoting authenticity.
You can read more insightful articles on the Exclaimer Blog about creating the perfect email signature to represent your business. And our email signature management platform is ideal for creating and managing business email signatures easily, with a drag and drop editor to get you started.
Email format is essential for keeping communication open with business acquaintances, and mastering structure is vital. Our guidelines should give you a firm grasp on how to approach each email.