Business Letter Format

Create professional business letters

What is the Proper Business Letter Format?

A business letter should always follow a certain format and structure to ensure it is received as professional and up-to-standard. While there are many different types of business letters, this guide will go through a detailed example of the most classic business letter format.

 

How to format a business letter

 

Business Letter Overview

In business, a letter is simply any type of correspondence sent between two parties. It may be about any topic and sent via many delivery methods such as email, regular mail, and hand delivery.

The tone you take in the letter will depend on who the audience is and what the purpose of the communication is. Sometimes you will need to be more formal, and other times a more casual voice is appropriate.

The example provided below is a neutral voice and moderate level of formality.

 

Business Letter Structure

Below is an example of how a business letter is laid out and structured. Feel free to copy and paste the text into your own email or Word document and be sure to customize and it proofread it thoroughly.

 

[Sender’s Name]

[Sender’s Company Name]

[Sender’s Street Address]

[Sender’s City, State/Province, & Zip/Postal Code]

[Sender’s phone number and or email address]

 

[Date]

 

[Recipient’s Name]

[Recipient’s Company Name]

[Recipient’s Street Address]

[Recipient’s City, State/Province, & Zip/Postal Code]

[Recipient’s phone number and or email address]

 

[Subject]

 

[Dear Name],

 

[Introduction – this is where you explain the purpose of the letter, why you are writing it, what you hope to achieve from, and any other important information you want to get out up front.]

 

[Middle Section – this is where you elaborate and provide more detail about what you outlined in the first paragraph. There may be several more paragraphs like this depending on how long the letter needs to be]

 

[Conclusion – this is the place where you wrap up and summarize things. There may be a call to action or next steps included in this paragraph.]

 

[Sincerely],

 

[Signature]

[Name of Sender]

 

Full Business Letter Example

Now that you’re familiar with the business letter format, let’s look at an example with real information built in.

 

John Bravo

ABC Education Inc.

1234 – 123 Street

New York, NY 01218

 

May 21, 2018

 

Sarah Geenie

XYZ Company Inc.

6789 – 789 Street

New York, NY 04851

 

Re: Updated Billing Frequency

 

Dear Ms. Geenie,

I am writing to inform you of our new pricing model effective September 1, 2018. On the first of September, we will be switching from an annual billing cycle to a quarterly billing cycle and this letter contains important information that may impact your organization.

After conducting extensive research and receiving feedback from our customers, we have determined that most customers strongly prefer a quarterly billing cycle rather than an annual one. In order to best suit your needs, we have decided to offer this benefit, which will take effect on September 1, 2018.

This letter is simply to notify you of the upcoming changes, and no immediate action is required from you at this time. We thank you for your continued business.

 

Sincerely,

John Bravo

 

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Business Letter Format Template

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Business Letter Format Template

 

Additional Formatting Considerations

In addition to the overall format and structure laid out above, you may also want to consider the following information, as standard business practices.

Formatting standards include:

  • Arial, Times New Roman, or a similar standard font
  • Size 11 or 12 point
  • Sentence case capitalization
  • White background
  • 5” x 11” size paper
  • Portrait layout
  • 1” margins
  • Single, 1.5 or double spacing
  • Black font color
  • Use of corporate letterhead
  • Single or double-sided printing
  • Plain white background

 

Additional resources

Thank you for reading this guide on how to have the proper business letter format. CFI is a global provider of online education and offers the Financial Modeling & Valuation Analyst (FMVA)TM certification for financial analysts.

To continue learning and advance your career, these additional resources will be helpful:

Financial Analyst Certification

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