How to End an Email: 9 Top Sign-Offs and Mistakes to Avoid

By Alan Reiner – December 18, 2023

In today’s fast-paced digital world, email remains one of the primary means of communication for professionals and casual correspondence alike. But how you end an email can leave a lasting impression on the recipient, and choosing the right sign-off is as important as the content of your message. 

This article explores nine best and worst email sign-offs, helping you effectively communicate your intentions and maintaining a professional tone.

As you craft your emails, consider nuances in your closing that can influence the response you receive or the tone that’s perceived. From formal options like “Sincerely” to more casual choices like “Cheers,” selecting a sign-off that reflects the nature of your email is key. 

Approach your email endings with care and attention to detail, utilizing the sign-offs suggested in this article to ensure your message is received as intended. Next time you write an email, leverage these tips to make a better impact on your audience.

Email Closings for Formal Business

Regards

When you need a professional and appropriate closing for a formal email, “Regards” is a safe choice. 

This email sign-off has been used in professional emails for years because it conveys a sense of respect and neutral tone. It’s considered a default email signature for formal business correspondence.

Sincerely

Another professional email sign-off is “Sincerely.” This option is often used in more formal settings, such as cover letters or formal emails to higher-ups in the workplace. 

Sincerely conveys a tone of respect, which is essential in professional emails. However, it can come off as stuffy in more casual business emails, so be mindful of the context in which you use it.

Best Wishes

“Best Wishes” is a versatile option for ending a formal email. It conveys warmth while still maintaining an appropriate level of professionalism.

You can use this closing line for both formal and semi-formal emails, making it a great option to have in your arsenal of professional email sign-offs. 

Just remember to use it in instances where it feels relevant and genuine to the subject matter of the email.

Email Closings for Informal Business

Cheers

“Cheers” is a popular email sign-off in casual and informal business settings. It conveys a friendly and familiar tone without being overly casual. If you want to maintain a light-hearted and polished approach to your communication, “Cheers” is an excellent option. 

It’s important only to use this sign-off when you have an established rapport with the recipient, as it may come across as too informal in more formal circumstances.

Best

“Best” is another widely-used informal email sign-off, particularly when you want to maintain a friendly but professional tone. It’s versatile enough to be appropriate for most business settings and can be used with recipients you’re familiar with. 

Keep in mind that while it’s straightforward and neutral, “Best” can sometimes lack the warmth of other informal sign-offs like “Cheers.”

As Ever

“As Ever” is a less common but still appropriate email sign-off for informal business communication. It’s especially useful when dealing with long-standing business associates or friends with whom you have a more personal connection. 

This sign-off can convey a sense of loyalty and trust, while still maintaining some element of humor and intimacy that helps to keep the correspondence relatively informal. However, use “As Ever” cautiously, as it might not suit every situation or recipient.

Email Closings for Gratitude and Requests

Thanks in Advance

Using “Thanks in Advance” is a polite way to express gratitude when you’ve asked for a favor or help from the recipient. This closing signals that you trust the recipient to complete the request and show your appreciation.

Example:

I look forward to receiving your feedback on the presentation. 

Thanks in advance,

Your Name

Thank You

A simple “Thank You” is a versatile way to show appreciation when ending an email. It can be used in various contexts, whether you’re expressing gratitude for assistance, responding to a helpful discussion, or acknowledging a completed task.

Example:

Thank you for taking the time to review my resume. 

Best regards,

Your Name

I Appreciate Your Input

When you specifically want to recognize someone’s contribution or advice, use “I Appreciate Your Input” to express your gratitude. This closing acknowledges the value of their input and demonstrates your respect for their opinion.

Example:

I appreciate your input on the marketing strategy. 

Best regards,

Your Name

Nine Email Sign-Offs to Avoid

Love

Using “Love” as your sign-off is unprofessional and inappropriate in a business context. It can make recipients feel uncomfortable, as it’s too personal and intimate. Stick to a more neutral and less affectionate sign-off.

Thx or Rgrds

These abbreviations for “thanks” or “regards” come across as lazy and unprofessional. It’s better to take the extra few seconds to write out the full words in a more respectful tone.

Take Care

“Take Care” may seem friendly, but it can be perceived as overly familiar in a professional setting. It’s best to opt for a more formal and neutral closing instead.

Looking Forward to Hearing from You

This sign-off can come across as presumptuous or pushy. It’s better to let the recipient respond at their own pace and on their own terms.

Yours Truly

“Yours Truly” is too formal and outdated for most modern business communications. Instead, choose a sign-off that’s more contemporary and relevant.

Respectfully Yours

“Respectfully Yours” can sound overly formal and even pretentious in a casual or informal email. Reserve it for more formal occasions and use a more neutral sign-off in other situations.

Sign-Off Blank

A lack of sign-off can give an abrupt and unfinished impression. Including a closing salutation, even a simple one like “Best” or “Regards,” helps provide a sense of closure and professionalism.

Signed with Name

Signing off with just your name is not a proper sign-off and can confuse the recipient. Add a closing phrase before your name to ensure clarity and maintain professionalism.

Have a Blessed Day

This sign-off is not only religion-specific but it may also be seen as overly personal or even preachy. Stick to a neutral sign-off that will be universally appropriate and respectful.

A Bad Sign-Off to Note

Sent from My iPhone

Using “Sent from My iPhone” as your email sign-off may not be the best choice, especially in a professional setting. This default email signature may give the impression that you are too casual or not fully engaged in the communication. It is important to tailor your email sign-off to the context and audience.

Instead of using a default signature, consider creating a custom signature that includes your name, title, and company name. This will not only make you appear more professional but also provide recipients with your contact information, making it easy for them to reach out to you.

Remember that your email sign-off is an important part of your communication, so ensure it reflects the tone and image you want to portray.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the best way to end an email professionally?

To end a professional email, choose respectful and straightforward sign-offs such as “Sincerely,” “Best regards,” or “Regards.” These convey a sense of professionalism and politeness and are widely accepted in the business world.

How should I end an email to a friend or informal contact?

For a friendly or informal email, choose a casual sign-off like “Cheers,” “Take care,” “Best wishes,” or “Talk soon.” These email closings set a relaxed and approachable tone, appropriate for friends or informal contacts.

What are some inappropriate email sign-offs to avoid?

Avoid overly informal, unprofessional, or overly familiar sign-offs in a professional context, such as “XXOO,” “Hugs,” “TTYL,” or “Peace out.” These may come across as unprofessional or inappropriate, depending on your relationship with the recipient.

How should I close an email to my boss or supervisor?

To close an email to your boss or supervisor, opt for a respectful and slightly formal sign-off like “Sincerely,” “Kind regards,” or “Thank you.” This shows your professionalism and maintains a respectful tone.

Are there any motivational email sign-offs?

Motivational email sign-offs can include phrases such as “Stay positive,” “Keep pushing forward,” or “Best of luck.” These sign-offs can uplift the recipient and convey support or enthusiasm but should be used judiciously and in appropriate contexts.

Is it appropriate to use “best regards” in a professional email?

Yes, using “Best regards” in a professional email is appropriate and often used. It conveys a sense of warmth and respect without being too formal, making it suitable for various business correspondence situations.