Business Letters: The Different Types Of Business Letters

Business Letters: The Different Types Of Business Letters


When you think of a business letter, you probably assume that there is perhaps two or three different types. In fact, there are a number of various business letters, each of which has a profoundly different meaning. Typically, a business letter is written either by an individual to a company or from one organization to another. A letter might be written in order to seek information, as a job application, to offer words of appreciation for an excellent job or they can be letters of complaint and inquiry. We will concentrate on a handful of business letter types which will be explained below:

Letter Of Apology

Obviously, a letter of apology is written as a means of asking for forgiveness after making a grievous error. The tone used in the letter should be soft and positive with minimal self-deprecation. This type of business letter should be written as soon as possible after the event has occurred. Instead of talking about the mistake, you should write about how you plan to atone. Ensure that this letter is personalized and flawlessly written with a positive conclusion including the use of phrases such as ‘Yours Sincerely’.

Letter Of Appreciation

The purpose of this business letter type is to show gratitude to an individual or a company. The recipient of this letter has excelled themselves and this letter is used as a means of motivation. The recipient may have produced brilliant work or else they helped you in a difficult time. Keep this letter short and make sure it is addressed to the specific individual/company that is deserving of your fulsome praise. Avoid exaggeration and pomposity, a short and sincere letter of appreciation will go a long way.

Letter Of Inquiry

This is a business letter written as a means of finding out important information from a higher authority. For example, the letter may be written by a prospective customer who is looking for more information on a product or service offered by a company. Formal language should be used throughout this type of business letter. Do not keep the reader waiting, keep the letter concise with the main purpose written in the first few lines. State the information you need and explain how the authority can be of assistance.

Letter Of Complaint

This letter is written as a means of expressing one’s dismay at the actions of the recipient. An example of a letter of complaint would be a citizen writing to a local or regional authority about pollution in the area. In a complaint letter, the problem(s) should be mentioned immediately. All citizens have the right to complain about a situation that is intolerable. The letter must specify the issues, ask the recipient what they intend to do as well as offering suggestions. Avoid angry language as this will not get positive results. The letter should be written when the person is in a calm state of mind and it should stick to the facts.

A well written business letter is the ideal way of drawing attention to a problem or solution as well as giving praise where it is due. Business letters should be carefully crafted and be perfect in terms of spelling and grammar.


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