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The various parts of a Business letter.

The various parts of a Business letter.

The various parts of a Business letter.

A Business letter is a type of communication between organisations or between organisations and individuals, such as clients, suppliers, contractors or other stakeholders.  Business letters are different from personal letters in the sense that they are more formal in tone and writing style. Below is a presentation of eight key parts of a business letter.

1. Letterhead- This is actually the identity of an organisation; where a business letter or document is coming from. It is usually printed at the top of the sheet. It contains details such as the name of the organisation, the address and telephone number.

2. Date - The date identifies the time or period the business letter was written or drafted. This is placed a few spaces below the letterhead, beginning halfway across the page or further to the right following various styles of writing dates. The American style is more popular.

  • American style – November 24, 2014
  • English style – 24th November 2014
  • Oxford style – 24 November 2014

3. Recipient’s address- This pertains to the name and address of the addressee. It is placed a few spaces below the date on the left hand side. The name of an individual comes with a title of reverence. For example, Dr., Mr., Miss., Mrs.

4. Salutation- This is a welcoming greeting placed on the second line below the recipient’s address. Salutations used in business letters are as follows: Dear Sir, Dear Madam, Gentleman and ladies.

5. Subject heading- This, in summary usually in one sentence explains what the business letter is about. It comes right after the salutation neatly boldened and underlined, formally introducing the body of the business letter.

6. Body- This in detail explains the purpose of the business letter or what the business letter is about. It is generally single spaced, with double spacing between paragraphs. When the body of a business letter is two or more pages, each page except the first one should be headed by the addressee name, page number and date as follows: Mr. Asamoah-2 -October 14th 1978. 

7. Complimentary close - This formally ends the business letter and begins two spaces below the last line of the body of the business letter and half way across the page. It is followed by a comma (,). The most frequently used forms of complimentary close are, "Very truly yours", "Sincerely yours", "Cordially", "Respectfully".

8. Signature - This consists of the signature, name of the writer. The name of the company should also be written while signing on a sheet without letterhead.    

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