Guide To Replying to an Email Professionally (With Examples)

By Indeed Editorial Team

Published 27 July 2021

The Indeed Editorial Team comprises a diverse and talented team of writers, researchers and subject matter experts equipped with Indeed's data and insights to deliver useful tips to help guide your career journey.

Email is a common form of communication for professionals. It's important to learn proper email etiquette. This can help you best respond to colleagues and clients and prevent miscommunication. In this article, we discuss how to respond to an email professionally and provide examples of replying to an email in various situations.

How do you respond to a professional email?

When responding to a professional email, it's important for you to use a business email format. This is a simple structure that allows for clear communication and organises information logically, such as separating different topics into separate lines or sections. It helps prevent miscommunication and demonstrates your respect for the recipient.

A professional email should include:

  • A subject line

  • A greeting

  • An introduction

  • Well-organised information

  • A closing statement

  • Your email signature

Read more: Email Etiquette: The Professional Business Email Format

How to answer an email professionally

Follow these steps when replying to an email:

1. Review the email

Read the initial email carefully. Identify the most critical questions or requests from the sender. While it's important to reply to business emails quickly, check the email for any potential urgent requests or deadlines.

2. Start with a greeting

Begin your email with a polite greeting. Consider including a phrase, such as I hope you're well or It was nice to hear from you. If the sender included a greeting in their email, respond to that. For example, if they opened their email with Hello! I hope you enjoyed your weekend, you may reply with Hi! I had a great weekend, and I hope you did, too.

3. Reply to each question or concern

Draft your email by separating all topics into each section. Create a new paragraph each time you answer a question or address a concern. This helps the reader skim and understand the email easily to gather the most important information.

4. Ask for confirmation of understanding

Include a statement that asks for confirmation of understanding after the body of the email. You may also consider including your availability to further discuss matters. Some examples of phrases you may include are:

  • Please let me know if you have any more questions.

  • Does this answer your question?

  • I'm in the office today until 6 p.m. if you would like to discuss this further.

  • Let me know if I can do anything else to help you.

  • Does this make sense?

5. Add a closing statement and your signature

Finish your email with a closing phrase, such as Have a great day or Looking forward to your response. Add a sign-off statement, such as Best or Sincerely, followed by a comma and your email signature. Some organisations may have requirements for what to include in your email signature, but it's important to include at least your first name and surname. You may also consider including your company name, job title and work phone number.

Read more: Email Etiquette: How to End an Email (With Examples)

Tips for responding to an email

Consider these tips as you reply to your professional emails:

  • **Focus on the topic.** Include only the most important information in your email to ensure your message is coherent and easy to understand.

  • Follow up with the recipient. Consider sending a follow-up email if you haven't received a reply after a few days of sending your response.

  • Proofread your work. Review your email before you send it to ensure it's concise, understandable and free of errors.

  • Provide a timely response. Try to respond to professional emails as soon as possible, and strive to reply within 24 hours of when you received the email.

  • Send it to the correct person. Be mindful of choosing between the options to reply to one person or to reply to everyone included in the initial email or entering an email address to ensure you email the correct person.

  • Use a positive tone. Maintain a positive, friendly tone when replying to business emails to foster good business relationships.

Professional email response template

Use this general template as a guide when you format your business emails:

Hello [recipient's name],

[Write a sentence to greet the recipient or respond to their greeting in the initial email.]

[Address the first topic or question.]

[Create another section to address the next topic or question. Repeat as many times as necessary.]

[Ask for confirmation of understanding.]

[Add a closing or farewell statement.]

Sincerely,

[Your name]
[Your job title]
[Your company name]

Related: Email Etiquette: Best Regards and Alternative Salutations

Examples of replying to an email professionally

Use these different examples of email replies as a reference when creating your own response:

Acknowledging an email

Good business practice involves responding to emails within 24 hours. However, it may not always be possible to answer all questions or requests that quickly. Here's an example you may send to acknowledge receiving a request:

Hello Daniel,

I hope you're having an excellent day.

I wanted to confirm I received your request for an estimate for a new website. Please allow me until the end of this week to best research the project and prepare an accurate estimate for you.

Thank you for contacting me about your website and I'm looking forward to working on this project with you. Please let me know if you have any questions in the meantime.

Best,
June Ming
Project Manager
Excel Marketing Enterprises

Accepting an application

The hiring process requires maintaining consistent communication with applications. You may reply to or send original emails often. Here's an example of a response to accept a candidate's application:

Hi Mary,

Thank you for applying for the junior graphic designer position at Golden Marketing Agency.

After reviewing your resume and application, we believe you could be an excellent addition to our team. Do you have time this week to schedule a call to discuss this further?

We appreciate your initial interest in this position, and we hope you continue in the application process. Please reach out with any further questions you may have.

Looking forward to hearing from you soon.

Sincerely,
John Lai
Human Resources Manager
Golden Marketing Agency

Related: How To Accept a Job Offer With Sample Acceptance Letters

Declining an application

Similarly, handling the hiring process for an organisation may require you to send rejection emails. Draft a concise but polite email updating the candidate about their status. Here's an example of an email you may send rejecting a candidate's application:

Hello Marcus,

Thank you for applying for the financial advisor position at National Bank Company.

Unfortunately, we have decided to pursue other candidates at this time.

We sincerely appreciate your interest in our company, and we value the effort and time used for your application. We encourage you to watch for future career opportunities with our company.

We wish you the best of luck in your job search.

Best,
Diane Siu
Human Resources Manager
National Bank Company

Delegating tasks

Delegating tasks is important to ensure workplace efficiency. This may require you to accept or decline a responsibility depending on if your schedule allows for more tasks. Here's an example of how you may respond to an email about a task you don't have time to complete:

Hi Simon,

I hope you enjoyed your weekend!

Thank you for contacting me about collaborating with you on the Central Coffee Roasters account. Unfortunately, I'm unable to take on any more projects at this time because of the demands of the Tasty Pet Foods account.

However, I believe Randall would be an excellent collaborator for this project. He was instrumental in the success of our Beautiful Teas account last year.

Would this work for you? Please let me know if I can help in any other way.

Best,
Samantha Fu
Account Manager
Gold Tree Marketing

Sending an attachment

A customer or colleague may request you that share files with them via email. Consider saving this as a template to send easily and often. Here's an example of a response you may send when attaching a file:

Hello Stuart,

Good morning! I hope you're having a good week so far.

As requested, I've attached a copy of your contract for you to review. Please let me know if you have any issues accessing the file.

Also, please let me know if you have any questions about your contract or account with us.

Best,
Michael Huang
Sales Manager
Pinnacle Advertising

Replying to a request for information

A customer or colleague may contact you with questions about a product or policy. Try to respond to these requests quickly and be sure to answer their questions clearly. Here's an example of how you may reply to an email about your company's product, service or policy:

Hi May,

Thank you for contacting Dynasty Software Company. We appreciate your interest in our services.

Based on the information you provided, I believe our basic design program package would allow you to complete everything you need to. This package includes our signature photo editing, illustrating and document design programs.

We prefer to bill our services on an annual basis, and this can also save you 15% on your package. However, you do have the option to pay quarterly or monthly.

Please let me know if you have any additional questions. If you would like to set up a demonstration of how to use our programs, I would be happy to coordinate this for you. I'd also be happy to help you begin a free trial of our software.

Thank you again for your interest in our services, and I look forward to your response!

Best,
Leonard Choi
Sales Representative
Dynasty Software Company

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