Business Letter Formatting – Create Your Own Letterhead Style
A business letter is essentially a formal letter from one business to another, or between these companies and their clients, customers, or other third parties. The content of the letter has to follow certain rules and structures laid down by the International Organization for Standardization (ISO). However, there are no hard and fast rules as far as business letter format is concerned. The format used may be determined by the nature of the business being written to or by the requester (that is, the one who asks for the document).
There are different types of business letters that are commonly used. It can be informal, formal, business-like, alliterative, etc. The nature of the letter also depends on the relationship between these parties involved. If it is a business letter between two companies, for instance, then the format used may be more formal than if the same two companies were engaged in a casual conversation or a simple conversation.
An example of a business letter format is the ‘Dear Sirs’ or the ‘Enclosures’. In this kind of letter, the first line shall contain the name of the sender, followed by the body of the message. Sometimes, it is followed by a phrase like ‘dear Sirs’, which is highly respectful. It may also be followed by an address such as House of Departments, PO Box 090 Wheatsheaf, Ltd., which is an address for a single business.
Other formats are also available. For instance, there is the abbreviated form of business letter format used commonly for informal letters. These letters often have information that is highly specific and less vague. For instance, an invitation letter may have information such as the names of the sender and recipient, date and time of the event, names of people who are attending and the venue where the occasion is to be held. This ensures that the small business owner does not waste his time on preparing boring notes.
An example of an informal format is the ‘To: Mr. James’ format. In this kind of format, the recipient is requested to make sure that he/she answers on time. After this, the first line should have the name of the person to whom the letter has been addressed and the subject line should include either ‘To’ or ‘Dear Sir’. The rest of the lines should then follow the format mentioned above.
The next thing to do is to format the letterhead. The standard font used in letterheads should be Times New Roman or Arial. If the business needs it, he can download free software from the internet, which will help in formatting the paper. If he still finds it difficult, he can create a paper with his own font style and size, according to the requirement.