Email Etiquette Part 3 - Caps Lock, Bold and Other Email Donts

Our 3rd post for our email etiquette series will cover what is considered inappropriate email formatting.  Follow the below advice to improve your email etiquette in both the professional and personal email world.

Do Not Use Caps Lock

Did you know that the use of all capital letters is an indication that you are yelling and rude?  Conversely, using all lower case letters can point to a lack of education or that you are careless.  When it comes to using upper and lower case letters, always construct your emails as if you were writing a formal business letter.

Backgrounds and Borders

Using backgrounds and borders may result in two issues.  The first problem is that these are created as image files which may send your email directly to a spam folder therefore it will never reach your contact.  Additionally, a background image or color can often make the email difficult to read for the recipient which will discourage them from reading the email.  It is best to stay away from both of these email formatting adjustments.

Bolding and Colors

In general, it is better to be safe and stay completely away from bolding words in an email. However, if you do choose to bold words do it emphasize an important word or sentence of an email instead of using it to add emotional effect. In addition, it is best to limit any use of emoticons as this could be perceived that you are not serious.

Another inappropriate format change is changing the font and/or the color. Using multiple colors and fancy fonts (while it can look pretty and cute!) is not necessary and, similar to backgrounds, will make the email difficult to read. 

Including Subject Lines

As mentioned in our first email etiquette post, Proper Business Communication, nonexistent greetings (Dear, Mr., etc) and closings (Sincerely, Regards, etc.) or having no subject line are improper and the email may be overlooked or deleted.

Now that you have learned what not to do in an email, check out our second post in our Email Etiquette series and learn about additional Appropriate Email Considerations.

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