We spend so much time polishing our email subject lines and the body text. We include bullet points, mark the key terms in bold, and even check the whole thing with Grammarly. Twice.
And yet, we usually end our emails with “Looking forward to hearing from you” when there are many more impactful email sign-offs—at least 25 of them!
An email-sign off is an essential part of every email campaign, be it personal or professional. It’s a little phrase that not only ends your email but also establishes the general tone, shows your attitude towards your recipient, and may even set expectations.
In this article, we’ll give 25 examples for five main types of email sign-offs:
- Formal sign-offs
- Traditional business email sign-offs
- Sign-offs to continue the conversation
- Compliment sign-offs
- Creative sign-offs
Plus, we’ll give you a heads up on the email sign-offs that should never see the light of day.
Let’s see how to end things well.
Why email sign-offs are important
You wouldn’t silently walk away at the end of a business meeting that you’ve just led, right? You’d probably thank everyone for their time and wish them a productive day. Maybe you’d make a joke. The same goes with emails—they need to have an ending.
For one thing, a properly chosen email sign-off will make a great impression on your recipient. After all, these are your last words (in the email), so they do count. A good email sign-off will also encourage the recipient to reply to you more quickly and boost your average response rates.
And, overall, it’s simply good manners.
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What you should consider before writing an email sign-off
There are three main things to take into account before writing any email sign-off:
Think about context
Depending on the recipient, a funny meme can make or break your email. Just like you wouldn’t say “Cordially” to your close colleague, you shouldn’t end a professional email with “XoXo.” Also, make sure you keep your fingers on the pulse of acceptable or unacceptable sign-offs.
Include your details
Sending your first email without your basic professional details is just not okay. Make sure you include your full name, professional title, links to your social media info, and phone number.
Be grammatically correct
This one goes without saying, and yet so many people send their emails without ending their sign-offs with a comma. Take a few minutes to reread each email you’re about to send to ensure that you don’t come off as sloppy, especially in your work environment.
Types of email sign-offs
Now that we’ve covered the basics let’s dive into the most fun part—the list of 25 email sign-offs for different circumstances!
Sending an email to POTUS? Look no further than these formal email sign-offs.
#1 Respectfully/Respectfully yours
Perfect for addressing government officials, this email sign-off is as formal as it gets. It also works great if you’re a student writing to your professor. We’d suggest being cautious with it in other settings, though.
#2 Yours sincerely
This one may come off as a little stuffy, but it’s a timeless way to end an email. Word of advice—use it only if you’ve addressed the recipient by name.
If you want to add a touch of professionalism, you won’t go wrong using “Cordially.” Still, it’s best used if you’re emailing someone for the first time.
#4 With gratitude
This sign-off does what it says—it expresses gratitude. Also, unlike the slightly less formal “Thank you in advance,” it doesn’t put that much pressure on the receiver to take action.
#5 Much appreciated
If you want to sound formal (but not too formal), this one is the way to go. It expresses gratitude but doesn’t sound stiff either.
Traditional business email sign-offs
If you’re writing an email to your colleague or a business contact that you’ve already built a relationship with, you won’t fail with those:
Short and sweet, “Best” is the way to go for semi-casual business communication. It fits multiple contexts and is one of the safest choices overall.
#7 Best regards
If you find “Best” too bland, you can always go with “Best regards.” It’s the perfect blend of professional and friendly.
Or you can drop “Best” and go with “Regards.” It’s a professional and neutral email sign-off that doesn’t set any expectations. However, you may come across as cold in certain contexts, so keep that in mind.
#9 Kind regards
Here’s one more variation with “regards”. It’s polite and adds more warmth compared to the previous ones.
#10 Thank you
A simple thank you can go a long way. It’s one of the classics that will add more sincerity to your email. Use it with an exclamation point at the end to show your enthusiasm.
#11 Thank you in advance
This one is a little tricky. You’re not saying thank you for what has happened, but what you hope to happen. Because of this, it can rub some people the wrong way. Be careful how you use it so that you don’t come off as too aggressive.
Sign-offs to continue the conversation
Want to get a reply? Here are some of the best email sign-off examples to keep the conversation going:
#12 Looking forward to hearing from you
This is one of the most common ways to end an email. However, it may feel a little pushy, so use it with caution.
#13 I look forward to your input on this
Here’s a subtle change to the previous example that makes a big difference. By switching the attention from “you” to “your input,” you’ll come off as less demanding.
#14 Interested to hear your opinion on this
Another way to encourage the conversation that doesn’t put too much pressure on the recipient. Who doesn’t like to express their opinion?
#15 Let me know if you want to chat about this over coffee
Want to set up a meeting with no pressure? Go with this email sign-off. You’ll also show that you’re enthusiastic and open to new ideas.
#16 Let me know how things go
If you’re not willing to meet in person, this one also helps to encourage further conversation without being too pushy.
Feel like patting someone on the back? Here are some ideas for friendly email sign-offs:
#17 Keep up the good work
This is the staple way to show praise and approval among corporate managers. While it does sound a little dry and is a bit overused, it’s still a safe choice if you want to flatter someone working for you.
#18 Great working with you
To compliment someone on the same level as you, go with this email sign-off. It’s a balanced way to show your appreciation and strengthen your partnership.
#19 Stay awesome
Looking for a slightly more informal email signature? “Stay awesome” is a perfect combination of flattery and excitement for the work environment.
#20 You’re an inspiration
We all have that one colleague who’s always uplifting others with genuine enthusiasm and is always there to help. Use this friendly email sign-off to show your appreciation.
#21 I appreciate your help
Someone has helped you out, but you aren’t that close yet? This email sign-off is a perfect way to compliment that person without feeling awkward about it.
Unless you’re being funny, it would be weird to end your email with “Respectfully yours” if you’re writing to your close colleague or a business partner with whom you’ve established an informal relationship.
Here are some creative email sign-off examples that will do great in such cases:
GIFs are still a thing—at least among millennials—so don’t shy away from using them in your emails. From favorite TV shows to confused cats, the possibilities are endless!
#23 Movie quotes
Movie quotes are great! They can help you connect with your colleagues and are a lot of fun. You may want to restrain from using the infamous “May the force be with you” and go with something witty like “I’ll be back” or “Just keep swimming.”
Using a meme as your email sign-off will make your email stand out even more. However, make sure you know the recipient well enough to send a recognizable pop culture reference.
You can also try your hand at humor! For example, you could make a work-related joke, but make sure that you don’t accidentally insult anyone with it.
Sign-offs not to use
There are great email sign-offs, there are okay-ish email sign-offs, and then there are those that are so annoying, you’re probably better off not ending an email at all (but please don’t do that either).
Here are some of the worst email sign-off examples for a professional email:
- Rgrds – the modern equivalent of “Dictated but not read.” Just type the entire word.
- Cheers – much better used in your team’s Slack channel (or in an actual pub).
- Ciao – leave it for Lady Gaga.
- Peace – this one sounds pretentious even if you’re advocating for saving the Earth.
- XoXo – unless you’re Dan Humphrey or a 14-year-old, this email sign-off just doesn’t work.
Wrapping things up
Now that we all can agree that email sign-offs matter, let’s make the best of them! Remember to always pay attention to the context, include your details, and mind the grammar when ending an email.
BONUS: Do you know what also goes well with a perfectly-crafted email sign-off? A post scriptum (that’s P.S. in common-folk language)! Read our article to learn how adding P.S. in your marketing emails can help improve conversions.
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