Survey shows most annoying mistakes in business emails

Posted on August 27, 2012


A survey has revealed the email errors most likely to irritate business partners and colleagues. The research, conducted by Staples in conjunction with One Poll, revealed the importance of ‘out of office’ emails, with 65 per cent of respondents saying that mistakes with spelling or grammar in these emails were off-putting. 58 per cent went as far as to say that they would not want to work with companies who did not use out of office emails.

The study found other irritations relating to emails that were unprofessional in tone, with 66 per cent of workers disliking the practice of putting kisses on emails. Smiley faces were also unpopular, as were abbreviations like ‘OMG’, showing that the habit of using text-speak in emails tends to annoy rather than impress. Over-familiar terms such as ‘honey’ also conveyed the wrong message, according to respondents.

The results of this survey clearly illustrate the need for business emails to stick to the same levels of professionalism found in other types of business communication. It can be tempting for employees and business people to see emails as a less formal way of communicating, but emails need to give out the same messages about a company as its website and other written content.

Writing standards are so important to businesses that many companies use professional writers for all aspects of their written communication. It’s quite common for companies to outsource written work like emails and blogs as well as the content on their websites, to avoid the blunders that annoy customers and business partners.


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