Caitlin Flynn
February 22, 2017 12:43 pm
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First impressions are key — and that’s why so many of us agonize over how to conclude our emails, especially when we’re job hunting. (*Raise your hand if you’ve ever typed and deleted your signoff about ten times in 30 seconds*) Here’s something comforting — you’re not fretting over nothing, and the way you end emails does affect how many replies you receive.

The productivity app Boomerang studied 350,000 email threads from over 20 online communities’ mailing lists and found that eight closings were used more than a thousand times: “thanks,” “regards,” “cheers,” “best regards,” “thanks in advance,” “thank you,” “best,” and “kind regards.”

If any of these are your email signoff of choice, good work! You’re already more likely to get a response.

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The eight most common closings all yielded higher response rates than the 47.5 percent average.

To increase your likelihood of a reply even more, sign off with an expression that shows appreciation. The top signoff, “thanks in advance,” yielded a 65.7 percent response rate, followed closely by “thanks” (63 percent), and “thank you” (57.9 percent).

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Boomerang’s research echoes similar findings from a 2010 study published in the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, which found that people are twice as likely to answer emails that conclude with “Thanks so much!”

Of course, if you’re struggling to get replies, the problem may not be you or your signoff — even emails with the best closings were ignored more than one-third of the time and over half of British workers have been ghosted by during the job hunt.

Still, using the proper signoff gives you a leg up — and if you don’t hear back, at least you won’t be up all night wondering if you were doomed by your email’s closing line.

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