Think about the last business email you sent. Were you satisfied with it?
We usually overestimate our ability to communicate effectively over email. It means that when you send an email to a customer, they probably won’t fully understand what you mean.
The following commonly used phrases are unnecessary and easy to misinterpret:
- “Sorry to bother you”
Opening an email with an apology immediately undermines your credibility, although you probably say it to be polite and considerate.
Go straight to the point: Why are you really contacting your customer?
- “To be honest with you…”
It’s commonly used to add emphasis or soften a sharp comment, but it can have the opposite effect, leaving your customer wondering whether you had been honest before. Cut this phrase from your emails and focus on telling it like it is.
- “No problem”
“No problem” can actually be a problem. This polite phrase can communicate to your customer that whenever you do something for them, it actually is a problem. Replace with a “You’re welcome” or “Sure thing” rather than risk a miscommunication.
- “I’ll try…”
If you respond to a customer’s request with “I’ll try to do this”, you aren’t exactly instilling confidence.
Even if you’re unsure about when, or if, you’ll be able to get something done, provide them with a real deadline, just push it out far enough to give yourself adequate time.
- “As I mentioned before…”
We know, it might seem like you’re always explaining the same things over and over again to your customers, but avoid this morale-killing phrase. People receive tons of emails each day, so you’ll have to forgive them if something slips.
Let’s now see what sentences you should introduce instead:
- “Thanks for…”
Try thanking customers rather than apologizing to them whenever a minor inconvenience occurs. Phrases like “Thanks for your patience” or “Thank you for your understanding” compliment the customer while still acknowledging the issue.
- “I hope all is well”
When starting your email, include a message like this to begin. This shows that you value the interaction and creates a personalized relationship with the customer.
- “I would appreciate your help”
Sometimes you’re going to have to ask a customer for help, but this can be easier said than done depending on the favour you’re asking from them. Try to explain your problem well and ask them for help, they will feel considered.
- “Looking forward to hearing from you.”
Rather than saying “Talk to you soon” or “Thanks again”, this is an effective message for encouraging feedback.
When you include the word “you”, you’re calling out the reader. You’re talking to them specifically and making a direct request. By incorporating the word “you”, your readers will feel like if they don’t help, no one else will.
Put these tips into practice and build your perfect business email! Your customers will thank you.
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