The Best Business Letter Closings - Plus Fun Letter Closing Salutations for Everyday Correspondence
The art of writing a letter, though exquisite and full of tradition, seems to be falling out of favor. Chances are you do not know how to properly close a business letter, or perhaps you are unaware of all of the amusing and fun sendoffs that you can include in various types of correspondence, ranging from formal letters to very intimate missives.
Not to worry! I am happy to share with you my personal collection of letter closing salutations, and I shall also show you how to pick the best business letter closing for more formal occasions.
I hope that these letter closing options inspire you to revive the slowly disappearing art of letter writing. Texts are convenient, tweets can be titillating, and Facebook posts can be funny, but letters leave legacies.
Business Letter Closings
If you are writing a business letter, you will need to utilize some of the more traditional (and I use that term loosely, as a business letter closing today is quite informal when compared of valedictions of the past) formatting and salutations.
There are two main types of business letters you will write in your life - those to people you know (or at least whose names you know), and unknown individuals (whose names you do not know). Here are the following correct salutations and letter closings for those formats:
When you do not know the person's name:
To Whom it May Concern,
Blah blah blah, correct English, blah blah, correct punctuation, blah blah blah, please do not use emoticons for the love of god, blah blah, try to use grown up words, blah, do not ask 'where they at' blah blah.
Note that all words in the opening are capitalized, but that "faithfully" in the letter closing is not. Also note that you may use "Dir Sir or Madam" in place of "To Whom it May Concern."
When you do know the person's name
Dear Mr. Smith,
Blah blah blah, if your write this in Comic Sans I will find you and hurt you, blah blah blah, brevity is key, blah blah, try not to misspell anything, blah blah, no acronyms unless you are referring to a corporation or other official organization, blah blah blah.
Note: You may also close such letters with "Sincerely yours," and also keep in mind that the use of this ending instead of "Yours faithfully" is only appropriate in the US. If you live in the UK or are writing to someone in the UK, "Yours faithfully" is a safer bet for business correspondence; "Yours sincerely," is seen as more informal.
Other Formal and Traditional Letter Closings
Beyond business correspondence, there are some letter closings that follow strict protocol.
When writing to one of superior pedigree (e.g. nobility, etc.), finish your letter with "Respectfully yours," instead of "Yours faithfully."
And if you're writing to one of superior pedigree, lucky you!
Semi-Formal Letter Closings
If you are writing to a co-worker or someone else with whom you have less formally-constrained, but still professional correspondence, consider these as potential endings to your business letters:
Some people get more creative, but to be on the safe and super professional side, stick just with these.
If you want to kick up the informality just one notch more, take these for a spin:
- Best regards, (or just Best/Regards for short)
- Best wishes,
- Fondly (unless you live in the UK, in which case this apparently has a bit of a sexual connotation and is OFF the table in this context)
- Warm wishes,
- Thanks again,
- I remain faithfully yours,
What About You?
Do you like to get creative with your letter closings?
Modern and Informal - BUT FUN - Letter Closing Salutations
Even today, in our fast-paced, no-time-for-proper-letters, I-will-communicate-everything-via-text times, you can still utilize some very fun and witty letter closings. I love playing around with them. They can add character to any sort of note.
Here are my favorites categorized under fun, goofy, and sexy:
Just for fun:
- Yours aye (Scottish equivalent of "Yours always,")
- As usual,
- As ever,
- Be well,
- Take care,
- Hope all is well,
- Thinking the best of you,
- My pleasure, always,
- Have fun,
- Talk to you later,
- Take it easy,
- Catch ya later,
- Keep smiling,
- Awaiting your response,
What do you think?
Would you use a goofy letter closing with colleagues and coworkers?
If you're feeling goofy:
- Ta da!
- Now go do that vodoo that you do so well,
- Game over, man,
- Until we meet again,
- Forever in your debt, (though I suppose this could be used non-ironically as well)
- Words aren't enough (ditto)
- Happy trails to you,
- Let's roll!
- Until I take an arrow to the knee, I am, as ever,
- Still standing,
- In reason and justice,
- Your days are numbered,
- Tally ho! (this is my personal favorite)
- Pip pip!
- Y U NO WRITE BACK?
- I'll race you (also an excellent ending)
- Onward, soldier,
- Smell ya later, (a classic)
- Until Caturday,
- Live long and prosper, (for geek points)
- I'm watching you, (also a personal favorite)
- Never give up, never surrender! (cool points to you if you get that)
- Only you can prevent forest fires,
- Friendship is magic,
- Later Vader (YES!!!)
- Cry me a river,
On the intimate side:
- Adoringly yours,
- Nibbles, (though I think just reading that made me throw up in my mouth a bit)
- Your loving,
- Love, (SO over-used)
- Blowing kisses your way,
- Love and kisses,
- Thinking only of you,
- Thinking dreadfully naughty things about you,
- Wearing absolutely nothing, I am, as ever,
As the wise Lalulinho pointed out, presenting these closings in various romance languages is also highly advisable.
Now tell me you are not tempted to use at least some of these.
But Wait! There's More!
To finish off this collection, I want to introduce you to the wonderful world of formal valedictions (known in the States as a complimentary close). I had encountered them in old classic books and wish that we could use them more today.
Here are the major versions of the ever-so-perfect (and awesome and fun-sounding, especially when used ironically in modern times and media) formal letter closings:
- I am, Sir, your most humble and obedient servant,
- Your obedient servant,
- Your obt svt,
- I am, etc., (my personal favorite. Sometimes I just walk about my apartment saying this in my fake British accent)
I hope you enjoyed these as much as I did!
I am, ladies and gentlemen, your most humble and obedient servant,
Simone Haruko Smith
P.S. I'm watching you.