how to write a business letter formal and informal pls give example  

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mwestwood eNotes educator| Certified Educator

While business letters cover a wide variety of purposes, they all have as their purpose the conveyance of information in as clear, direct and brief a manner as possible. Therefore, stylistically complex sentences are not used in business letters. In general, the writer should come directly to the point of the purpose of the letter and convey all the essential information quickly.

There are three styles of business letters: block, modified block, and semiblock.In the modified block and the semi block style, the heading of the letter is placed in the upper right-hand section of the page, rather than along the left margin as in block. The closing and signature are placed in the lower right-hand section parallel to the heading. The other parts of the letter--the inside address, the salutation, and the body--are placed along the left margins. The only difference between modified block and semi-block style is in the setup of the paragraphs as in modified, the paragraph are NOT indented; in semiblock, they are indented.

[Note that the salutation is followed by a colon. The "To Whom it may concern" is not used at all; use "Dear Sir or Madam:" or "Dear +name:"  The closing is no longer "Sincerely Yours" or "Yours Truly"; use "Sincerely,"]

***The link below provides sample business letters.

Here is the one for the strict block style:

_________,_____________    (heading)
                                             [4 spaces]

_______________________  (inside address)

                                             [2 spaces]

_______________________:  (salutation)

                                             [2 spaces]
_______________________________________________  (body)

                                                                         [2 spaces]
_________________________, Closing
                                                                         [4 spaces]


_________________________ typed Name 




Informal letters allows more choice of content than in formal writing.  For one thing, they do not include an inside address and the greetings and closings are more casual. For instance, Dear +name is followed by a comma, not a colon. Friendly letters should express a person's own ideas in a personal style; nevertheless, they should also be clearly organized and well thought out.  Here are some steps that can be taken 

1. Be sure to include answers to the person's questions who has written to you if you are responding.

2.  Choose the letter style you want to use indented or semiblock and adhere to it.

3.  Strive to be clear, specific, interesting, and neat in your handwriting.

4. Proofread your letter by reading it aloud.

5. Correct any errors in grammar, punctuation, or spelling.



upasanasharma | Student

Dear Mr Thompsen,

I recently received a letter from a Mr Robinson, a valued customer of ours. He purchased an Italian coffee table and four French dining-room chairs from us which your company delivered to his residence.

He has written to complain that the purchases arrived damaged. We pride ourselves in the quality of our products and would like an explanation as to how this mishap occurred. Even though the items are insured, our reputation is at stake.

I would be most grateful if you would reply as soon as possible so that this matter can be resolved to everyone's satisfaction.


Jackie Middleton

Customer Services Manager

upasanasharma | Student

Informal Letter

Hi Leo,
It's been a while since we wrote, so I thought I'd drop you a line to bring you up to date with what's been happening here.
I suppose the most important thing is that Jane's job is more secure than we thought. At the beginning of the year, when she got the job, we thought it might only be for one semester, but we just found that she has a permanent contract of sorts. Obviously this is great, as it means we can relax a little. I still don't have what I really want work wise, but it will happen soon. You have to stay positive, don't you?
My parents are both fine, and I think they are really happy that we've moved back. For us, it's great to be so close to family again, an extra sense of comfort and security. We see my sister quite often as she's in London, although we're not that bothered about going into the city.
So, what about you these days? Are you still stuck in that old job? Since I've been having so much trouble getting a job I understand your reluctance to change. There's nothing worse than filling in endless application forms, with no idea of what it will lead to.
Anyway, I've got another form to fill in so I'll love you and leave you.