How to Write Email Greetings (with Examples for Every Situation)?

Did you know that making a great first impression takes only 7 seconds when you meet someone? Hence, it’s important to start on the right note.

What about emails? The opening line in an email, or the greeting, is just as vital. It sets the tone for your message and could decide whether your email gets read or gets dumped in the bin.

In this guide, we’re here to assist you in formulating perfect email openings suitable for various situations. Plus, we’ll share some fail-proof examples for you to follow.

How to choose Email Greetings?

Starting an email and saying hello can be done in numerous ways. Here are three key points to keep in mind when writing your email greetings:

1. Who are you sending an email to?

Are you emailing someone you know or a stranger? And if you know them, do you usually call them by their first name?

If you’re writing to someone you don’t know personally, it’s recommended to stick to formal email greetings. However, if you’re acquainted, a more casual greeting can work.

The formality can vary based on the company culture and your usual interactions. If you generally call your boss by their first name, it’s fine to opt for a less formal greeting.

Now, all this is about emailing one person. But what about when you’re sending an email to a group? It’s not practical to greet everyone individually, so it’s best to use professional greetings in this case.

2. Where’s the communication at?

The second factor to consider is the stage of your communication.

Are you initiating contact with a cold email, sending a follow-up after a phone call, or merely replying to a previous email?

The context of these scenarios can drastically alter, and sometimes, even eliminate the necessity for an email greeting.

For instance, when you’re sending a cold email or following up after a business call, opting for formal email greetings is usually best.

However, when you’re responding to an ongoing email thread, you might skip the greeting and jump directly into the subject matter. And this smoothly transitions us to our last key point.

3. Other factors to consider

Other aspects play a role in determining the right way to start an email.

Take the time of day, for example.

This can be tricky. Just because it’s the morning where you are, doesn’t mean it’s the same for your recipient. Moreover, they might not open your email until the next morning.

So, we recommend using time-specific greetings like “Good Morning” or “Good Evening” only when you’re certain about when they’ll read the email.

Another important consideration is the recipient’s gender pronoun preference.

The use of gender pronouns has stirred quite a debate in recent times. A study by Pew Research shows a divided opinion: 23% of people are uncomfortable using gender-neutral pronouns, 24% are somewhat uncomfortable, 25% are comfortable, and 27% are somewhat comfortable.

Interestingly, there are now 78 gender pronouns, though most people use He/Him, She/Her, or They/Them. Keep this in mind when writing your email greetings.

Best Email Greetings for every situation

The purpose of your email will often direct the type of email greetings you will use. Clearly, a formal email will need a different type of email greeting than an informal one.

Best informal Email Greetings

For informal emails, that is, emails that you send to friends, family members, or colleagues, for example, the following email greetings will be appropriate:

  • Hi [Name]
  • Hello [Name]
  • Dear [Name]

Best formal Email Greetings

When the situation calls for you to be more formal, here are some greetings go for:

  • Dear Mr/Mrs [Last Name]
  • To [First and Last Name]

Of course, that’s not to say you can’t use email greetings like “Hi” or “Hello”, but in general these are better used in more informal situations.

Likewise, avoid greetings like “To whom it may concern”, “Dear Sir or Madam” or “Dear Customer” as they can be too impersonal.

Best greetings for Follow-up Emails

If you’re writing a follow-up email, you can skip the Hi/Hello/Dear part and get straight to the subject.

Here are some excellent ways to start a follow-up email:

  • Following up on our last conversation
  • It was a pleasure to meet you [insert place or day you met]
  • I’m getting back to you about
  • As promised, here’s
  • I’m checking in on
  • As we discussed [on the phone, in our meeting]

Best greetings for Email Replies

If you’re the one replying to a message, you can use these greetings:

  • Thank you for getting back to me
  • Thank you for the reply
  • Thank you for the quick response
  • I appreciate your getting back to me
  • It’s great/good to hear from you
  • A pleasure to hear from you about this
  • Great to hear from you [First Name]

Best Email Greetings for group emails

When emailing a group of people, you generally want to avoid informal email greetings and go more for professional ones.

For instance, here are some group email greetings you can start with:

  • Greetings everyone
  • Hi all
  • Hello everyone
  • Hi team
  • Hello [First Name 1, First Name 2, First Name 3…]

One thing to avoid when sending group emails is to start with something like “Hey guys/boys,” unless you’re sure that it’s a male audience only.

Best Greetings for the time of day

As we discussed earlier, use these greetings based on the time of day carefully and only if you are confident that someone will read them at that time.

Such greetings can also be good to have a more friendly tone in your emails while staying professional.

So here are some greetings based on the time of day (you probably know them from everyday life):

  • Good morning
  • Good afternoon
  • Good evening

Worst Email Greetings

Before we give you the best email greetings for almost every situation, it’s good to know some greetings that won’t get you anywhere and that you should avoid.

According to Perkbox, these are the greetings that recipients care for the least:

  • No greeting – 53%
  • To whom it may concern – 37%
  • Hey – 28%
  • Happy [Day] – 23%
  • Greetings – 22%

Now, should you always steer clear of such greetings?

This largely depends on the situation. As we already saw, you can skip the greeting altogether if you reply to an email or write a follow-up email for example. Having an email conversation should be as smooth as having a real conversation. Hence, our advice would be to not worry too much about these rules but to try to keep your conversation as natural as possible.

Another example where such complex rules don’t always apply is “Hey.” In general, it’s better to use “Hi” or “Hello,” “Hey” is perfectly acceptable if you’re emailing someone you have a good rapport with (i.e., a coworker).

Last but not least make sure to include the person’s first name in the greeting. That’s how they’ll know you took the time to research that. No one wants to be called by his job title, then avoid greetings such as Dear Hiring Manager, Dear Assistant, etc.

Best Email Greetings

As you can see, you can use some of the email greetings in different scenarios and situations.

Here are a few good ways to greet someone over email.

  • Hello [First Name]

Personalizing your greetings is essential, especially for more formal email greetings, and “Hello [First Name]” is usually a better choice for professional, cold, and official emails.

  • Hi [First Name]

“Hi [First Name] will generally be good for more informal greetings. This is something that you can, for instance, use with a manager you built a rapport with or a coworker.

  • Dear [First Name]

If you’re emailing someone in a position of authority or respect, you can go a step above the “Hello” and use “Dear” instead.

This email greeting is usually best used for addressing someone like a client or a manager. Using “Dear Mr./Ms [Last Name]” can be an alternative to sound even more formal.

The one thing you want to avoid (and this goes for “Hi,”Hello,” and “Dear,” is misspelling the recipient’s name or using nicknames unless you’re already calling them that in real life.)

For example, if you’re emailing someone named Jennifer, your email should start with “Hi Jennifer” and not “Hi Jen.”

Also, as we mentioned, you may need to consider their preferred gender pronouns, that is, if you should address your recipient with Mr.” (for men) or “Ms” (for women). If you’re not sure, it’s best to skip that altogether.


Mailchimp says the average email open rate (across industries) is 22.71%, which means only about 2 people out of 10 will actually open your email. Once they open it, if your greetings are off, they’ll shut your message before you know it.

Getting your email greetings right is important, but not sufficient: Learn more on how to use proper email etiquette.

Finally, if you want to make a strong impression with your email, stop using a generic email domain, like, and instead use a premium email domain. This will increase the trust, consistency, and simplicity of your emails.

You can get a premium email domain by signing up for Mailfence.

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