Goodbyes are incredibly hard. Whether you leave your family behind for an uncertain period of time, or are trying to excuse yourself politely from an insufferable dinner party, goodbyes are just plain painful.

When you’re trying to sign off your business email, a goodbye can sometimes pose just as big a dilemma. It needs to be done professionally and gracefully, without attracting any unwonted and unwanted attention.

Everybody has their own preference for closing an email. But there are definitely some handy tips to keep in mind, so that you can walk the tightrope between professional and personable.

  • “Yours sincerely” – you can’t go wrong with this one, but it can come off as a little too official and impersonal.
  • “Regards” or “Kind regards” – it’s simple, effective and walks the fine line between professional and friendly.
  • “All the best” – There’s nothing overly wrong with this common ending (or its increasingly used derivative “best”), but it certainly rings a little more hollow than some of the other sign-offs.
  •  “Thanks” – Use your personal discretion for this one. If the email’s content lends itself to this curt response, go for it; but it can come off as a bit blunt. Remember there’s no tone to a single, written word.
  • “Nothing” – Once your email has been sent and replied to, up and down, it becomes convenient and helpful to simply drop the sign off. Otherwise the chain mail becomes cumbersome and unnecessarily time consuming to engage with.

But we’re not 100% done yet; saying goodbye isn’t the end.

Your signature is a vitally important part of your email. It should be simple yet comprehensive; informative yet brief; clear yet thorough.

Make sure you include the basic essentials:

  • Your name and title
  • Your contact number. Don’t include every single company contact detail. Prevent it from becoming overcrowded and include the key information only
  • A link to your company website or social media page. There’s no need to prove your social media proficiency by linking every single account in your repertoire either!
  • Your company logo, if applicable, or branding. Take care not to include a disproportionately sized image that undermines your signature’s details and looks odd.

So, while goodbyes might not be easy, they’re certainly not impossible. By following some of the simple tips above you can keep your email professional and friendly, with a perfectly chosen sign off every time.