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How do I write an email to include an attachment?

How do I write an email to include an attachment?

In my job, it's not uncommon for me to send emails with files attached that contain sensitive information or important documents. For example, when someone sends over their resume, I might attach their résumé as an.PDF file so they can easily access what we're looking for. Or if our team needs to review some data from another department, I'll often share spreadsheets containing relevant charts, graphs, or tables via email.

But how exactly should one go about attaching a document (or other type of media) in an email? Is there any difference between saying "attachment" versus using "attach"? And are there different ways to format these messages depending on whether you're sending them within your company or outside of it? Let's take a look!

How do you mention attachment?

The most basic way to reference an attachment would be to simply add it into the body of the message itself. This works fine when you want to describe something contained inside the attached file. However, this doesn't work well when you want to actually name the specific item being sent — after all, who wants to scroll through dozens of pages just to find out which particular Excel spreadsheet was meant by whoever added it to the discussion? In cases like these, you need to use proper formatting. Here's what you'd typically have to do:

Say you wanted to let everyone know that you had submitted your taxes. You could create an email titled "Taxes," then explain below where people could download your 1040EZ form. Then, under Attachments, you could insert a link to the official IRS website with instructions on where to fill things out. Within this section of the email, though, you could also put "[tax returns]," followed by whatever tax details were included in said forms. So long as no one else has edited the content of this email since you created it, anyone reading it will see everything they need to know without having to hunt around for anything themselves.

This method does require using plain text rather than HTML. If you choose to use HTML instead, however, you can make this process even easier by adding in hyperlinks. Simply highlight [tax returns] above and select Insert Hyperlink from the menu bar. From here, click Add Link, enter your URL or web address, and hit OK. Now whenever readers open up the email you've written, they can directly navigate to the page where they can view your return. To delete links later, just repeat the steps listed above but remove the word "hyperlink."

A note regarding privacy concerns: It may seem strange to embed links to government websites in private correspondence. But remember that companies don't necessarily hold onto every email you ever send them, especially those with large volumes of incoming mail. Even if they did keep track of each individual piece of correspondence, finding the right records becomes exponentially more complicated once you start trying to correlate multiple accounts. Embedding links keeps everything streamlined while still giving users direct access to the information they need.

Now, if you were writing a more informal email than a business-related missive, perhaps you wouldn't feel compelled to mention an attachment at all. Just be sure to always provide clear directions for recipients on where to locate what you've sent. Otherwise, you run the risk of accidentally leaking confidential information.

Another thing worth keeping in mind is that many email clients treat certain types of files differently. Gmail, for instance, treats PDFs as attachments unless specifically marked otherwise. That means that if you upload a PDF file and tell others to either Download File or Open Document, whichever option they pick will determine whether they receive the entire contents of said file or only its thumbnail preview. The latter is preferable because it reduces bandwidth usage and minimizes potentially embarrassing mistakes.

As far as I'm concerned, including attachment isn't really much of a problem anymore thanks to online services such as Dropbox, Google Drive, Evernote, and OneDrive. These tools allow us to store various pieces of media together in the cloud, meaning we never need to worry about losing files again. As long as your recipient uses software that supports viewing said items, they won't care what kind of file you used to send it to them.

How do you mention attachments in a formal letter?

When you're exchanging letters with friends, family members, and colleagues, you probably tend to stick to standard formats. While you can certainly break away from convention occasionally, doing so requires extra effort and planning.

For example, one common mistake made by people unfamiliar with the English language is mixing singular ("you") and plural pronouns ("yous"). They usually end up sounding very awkward. On top of that, you don't want to leave off punctuation altogether, lest the words become jumbled messes that convey nothing coherently. Fortunately, there's a solution to avoid this pitfall.

You can achieve similar results by sticking to a set number of sentences per paragraph. Don't forget to space out paragraphs appropriately, too. There are several rules of thumb to follow when composing formal letters, but a general rule of three to five lines per paragraph is good enough 99 percent of the time.

However, if you absolutely must deviate from this structure, consider breaking down longer sections into shorter ones. Doing so allows you to give yourself breathing room and gives readers the chance to skim over topics before diving deeper into each topic.

What happens if you want to refer back to a previous sentence? By inserting parentheses around phrases or clauses, you can mark references to earlier points without repeating them unnecessarily. Of course, you shouldn't rely on this technique exclusively. When appropriate, try to restate ideas in full.

Finally, you should think twice before crossing out parts of speech. Since grammar plays a huge role in conveying professionalism, leaving out articles or conjunctions makes your writing sound amateurish. Plus, it leaves little wiggle room for misinterpretation. Before marking up a draft, ask yourself why you chose to strike certain elements out. If you aren't confident in your reasoning, maybe you should reconsider editing it further.

How do you mention an attachment in a report?

If you're working on reports for clients, bosses, or peers, you probably already know that putting together professional communications can get pretty tricky sometimes. First, you need to craft an objective statement that sums up the purpose of the study. Afterward, you need to decide how best to present your findings and conclusions. Finally, you need to organize all of the supporting evidence behind your arguments.

With all of this complexity comes ambiguity. How do you know what counts as jargon, slang, colloquialism, etc.? What constitutes a correct spelling? Should you use a comma, period, colon, semicolon, exclamation point, question mark, quotation marks, brackets, italics, boldface, capitalization, etc.? Are you allowed to use hashtags? All of these questions and more can lead to serious headaches if left unanswered.

Fortunately, most modern day office workers rarely encounter situations where they need to prepare formal reports. Most of the time, a short yet concise description works perfectly fine. Also, if you're unsure about how to properly cite sources, check out citation style apps like They compile lists of frequently confused terms and offer step-by-step solutions to help you fix problems quickly.

How do you say an attachment in an email?

While most people understand the concept of sending a picture or video along with an email, it's less obvious how to handle audio recordings. With voice notes, for instance, you can technically attach them to an email, but it's generally considered poor etiquette to do so. Instead, you should save them as separate MP3 files first. Once you've done that, you can place them alongside your main email and use the built-in function to play them aloud.

Aside from that, there's not much difference between regular attachments and voice notes aside from the fact that you can't talk during playback. Like pictures, videos, and GIFs, you can send voice notes to individuals' phones or computers for listening offline. You can also record them and transcribe them into text afterward. Alternatively, you can convert them into an MP3 format and copy/paste the resulting audio snippet into your message.

Of course, if you're dealing with voicemails, you should definitely listen to them beforehand. It's easy to lose focus while recording and skip ahead unintentionally. After you finish, you can turn them into text if necessary and paste the result into your email. Some voicemail transcription services, such as LiveTranscribe, can automatically convert recorded phone calls into transcriptions so you can email them separately.

Once you've finalized your message, you should double-check for grammatical errors. Have an editor proofread it thoroughly before hitting Send. Remember that email signatures are part of personal branding, so try to incorporate a bit about yourself into yours. Use autoresponders or prewritten responses if you prefer, although this approach is somewhat frowned upon nowadays.

We live in a world where technology allows us to communicate with people from all over the globe, but this also means that we have been trained to be more polite than ever before when exchanging messages via text or email.  While it’s important to keep your language clean and avoid curse words, there are still some things you need to know about how to properly format emails so they don't come off as rude.

One area that can cause problems for many users is including attachments within formal letters. There's no question that sending someone an attached file via email is much less offensive than mailing them a paper letter, but if you're not careful then it could end up sounding like you're trying too hard. The following guide will help you decide which type of formatting works best depending on what kind of message you want to send.

Note: In our examples, we'll refer to "attachment" as any sort of document sent by email (whether an image, PDF, Word doc, etc.). We won't get into details about different types of files here since most of these rules apply whether you're talking about photos, videos, audio clips or anything else.

How do you indicate attachments in a formal letter?

When writing a formal letter — especially one addressed directly to another person — it's common etiquette to attach something other than just your signature. This might mean attaching several pieces of related correspondence or documents, such as multiple contracts or agreements. It may even require adding a cover page to the top of the first page.

Most experts agree that covering the entire thing in brackets should only be used when necessary. Otherwise, simply add "[attachments]" after your name. For example, John Doe [Attachments].

If you think your recipient would prefer to see everything in chronological order instead of displayed randomly, it's probably better to use numbers as well. Adding "[1-3 Attachments]": John Doe 1, 2 & 3.

You can also opt for using asterisks to designate each individual attachment. So, *Contract A*, *Contract B* and *Letter*. If you use asterisks, make sure there isn't already a standard rule for indicating attachments within a given piece of mail. Some companies put their company logo next to every item included with a customer's package, while others place an outline around certain items. Either way, if you choose to use asterisks, stick to the established convention.

Lastly, you can always try putting a line through each attachment. Just remember that doing so requires extra effort, so consider whether it's worth the additional work.

How do you show attachments in a formal letter?

There are two main ways to display attachments in a formal letter. One option involves showing them inline with the rest of the body text. Doing so makes it easier for recipients to scan down the page without having to open up separate windows for each attachment.

However, this method has its disadvantages. First, because the attachments take up space by being part of the actual content, they often appear smaller than normal. Second, because there's so little white space between paragraphs, it's easy for readers to lose track of exactly where they left off reading the original message.

A second approach is to leave the attachments out until later in the process. When discussing them, simply reference them by number or paragraph. Then, once the reader reaches the bottom of the list, they can read the full version.

This technique is ideal if there aren't going to be many attachments sent alongside the letter. However, it does present a problem when there are numerous pieces involved. Consider using images rather than attachments whenever possible. They tend to look larger and feel more professional than documents saved to disk.

Also, if you're worried about slowing down the overall response time, you can always set up Gmail filters to automatically move messages containing particular words or phrases to specific labels. That said, this strategy comes with some risks. Depending upon what you're filtering for, you may accidentally label yourself as spam. And if your filter targets messages with large attachments, those attachments might never reach the intended recipient.

Another potential pitfall is leaving attachments unnumbered but marking them up with stars. While this sounds great in theory, it can easily lead to confusion. You wouldn't typically mark up sentences in a letter, so why bother numbering attachments? Furthermore, if you happen to receive a copy of the letter with numbered attachments, who knows how old it was made!

What is the correct way to mention an attachment?

Once you've decided to attach a document, it needs to go through an approval process prior to actually hitting Send. Typically, corporate culture dictates that you must obtain permission from a supervisor or manager before sending sensitive information electronically. Many offices use a system called Confidential Delivery Service, or CD Services, which allows employees to submit confidential material to designated servers that encrypt data in transit.

In short, if your boss doesn't give his OK beforehand, it's usually considered bad form to send anyone an attachment via email. At least, unless you absolutely have to. But if you do find yourself in this situation, there are some guidelines to follow.

First, if your recipient happens to have Microsoft Outlook installed, she may need to download the free.CDM extension in order to view the attachment. Simply highlight the link to the document, right click and select Open With followed by Outlook Express. After confirming that the dialogue box asks if you'd like to install the application, Windows will prompt you again. Choose Install Now to proceed.

Next, head back to File Explorer and navigate to C:\Program Files\Microsoft Office\OFFICE12oot\officecontainer\Shared Documents\Mailbox\AttachedFiles\[document_name]. Once inside the folder, rename the file to whatever you'd like. Here, let's say it's MyDocument.pdf. Right click the new file and select Properties. Navigate to the Customize tab, check Replace existing files, enter MyDocument as the dropdown menu title, and hit Apply. Finally, delete the original attachment from the Email client window.

Now, when your recipient opens the message in her inbox, she'll see only the renamed attachment. She won't notice that the original wasn't listed. Unfortunately, this method isn't foolproof. Sometimes, despite renaming the file, older versions of Excel continue to save the contents as an embedded object. These objects can sometimes bypass the above steps.

To fix this issue, open Notepad and paste in the code below. Save the resulting TXT document under %userprofile%\\AppData\\Local\\Temp\\OfficeFileCacheHolder. Next, create a shortcut named UpdateExcel.exe and point it toward the location of this cache file. Double click the icon to launch the program, browse to the root directory and delete the whole officecache subfolder. Hit Yes on the warning dialog box asking if you really want to close the app. Click Close, wait 30 seconds and reopen Excel. Try opening the updated file now. Hopefully, it shouldn't reoccur.

Still, if you run into trouble, you can disable Office caching altogether by setting the registry entry HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Office\15.0\Common\General\AutoSaveRetentionPolicy. To change this value, press Win + R to bring up the Run command dialog and input regedit. Head to Computer\HKEY_CURRENT_USER\SOFTWARE\Policies\Microsoft\Office\16.0\common\general and double click AutoSaveMaxLimit. Change the Value field to 0 and click OK. Restart Office 2016 and repeat the procedure outlined earlier.

Finally, if neither of these solutions worked, you can manually remove cached files associated with previous versions of Excel, or switch to a cloud service like Google Drive to upload your files.

How do you include an attachment in a formal email?

It's pretty clear that proper formatting plays a huge role in ensuring a formal email doesn't sound like a rambling mess. Whether you're composing a regular business missive or a long personal note, knowing how to correctly format your email can prevent it from coming across poorly. Plus, getting comfortable with the basics of email etiquette will almost certainly improve your own online reputation.

Have questions about how to craft a formal email? Ask away in the comments section below!

Email has made life easier for many people, but it's also led us down some dark paths.

For example, there was that one person who sent me a photo by writing "Have fun with this," which... no thank you very much. Email can be so impersonal sometimes — and attachments are part of that problem. But how exactly does one attach something via electronic mail? And what should we write if we want to include an attachment in our message?

I spoke to several experts on etiquette and emails to find out. Here's everything you need to know about including attachments in your messages.

How do you write an attachment in an email?

There are two ways to add an attachment into an email, according to Elizabeth Gilbert, author of The Compulsive Email Writer (who prefers not to use her real name). You can either upload or drag-and-drop files onto your computer screen before hitting Send. If you choose the latter method, once you open up your email program, go to File & Attach Files. Then select the file you wish to attach. After selecting the file, hit Open.

"This will bring up the 'Insert' window where you'll see options such as Notes, Text Boxes, etc.," says Gilbert. Once inside the Insert menu, scroll all the way to the right until you see “File” and then click on it. This brings up another window, where you have three different choices: OneDrive, Google Drive, Dropbox, Evernote. Choose whichever service you'd like to put your attached document on and then save the file. From there, just copy over the link from your cloud storage account and paste it into your email body.

If uploading works better for you, however, here's what you do. Go to your desktop, click on whatever folder contains the text/document you would like to insert into the email, and press Ctrl + V to open up your Windows clipboard. Next, type in your subject line and then paste your text directly into the email body. When finished, just hit Enter and voilà! Your words, along with any images you may wish to add, will now appear in the rest of your email.

What do you write in an email when sending an attachment?

As mentioned above, you don't necessarily have to compose your entire email first without adding anything else. It's OK to start typing while attaching documents because they're technically still part of the conversation. However, make sure you get your point across clearly. A poorly written email might result in lost business opportunities.

"When composing an e-mail, keep in mind that the recipient will likely read it later, whether immediately or after passing it through multiple hands," explains Jordan Livengood, founder of online etiquette resource Etiquette School. "It must contain information relevant enough to hold their attention."

So, if you're trying to pitch someone on getting them involved in a project, it's best to keep things short. Don't try to explain too much detail within the confines of an email. That could end up being overwhelming for whoever reads it. Also, remember to proofread everything thoroughly. Mistakes happen even to the most seasoned professionals, so take care if you're going to be relying solely on technology to communicate important matters.

In terms of formatting, avoid using capital letters unless necessary. For instance, if you were emailing to convey that you've already responded back to someone, you shouldn't capitalize the phrase. Otherwise, stick with lowercase whenever possible.

And finally, always consider the audience. No matter what you decide to say, think carefully about what kind of impression you want to leave behind. Is this personal correspondence between friends? Or is it meant for potential clients? Keep that in mind at all times.

How do you indicate an attachment in an email?

You won't necessarily need to mention that you're attaching a specific thing when you begin drafting your email. Instead, simply refer to the content itself. In other words, if you wanted to tell someone a story, you wouldn't reference a particular magazine article as opposed to saying "there's an interesting article that you might enjoy." Likewise, if you're talking about a picture, don't specify a certain frame. Just call it a photograph instead.

However, if you're referring to more than one item, you might want to give each separate piece its own title. So maybe you're referencing a handful of photos, videos, articles, and drawings. In that case, you might label these items accordingly. For example, let's pretend you had five pictures of yourself doing various activities. Say one of those titles included "Me Doing Yoga," another "Me Enjoying My Family Dinner," and yet another "Me Looking Like An Idiot While Playing Soccer." Now imagine you wrote a long email to someone describing all the pictures. They might assume that since you called the last shot "Me Looking Like An Idiot While Playing Soccer," that's the only thing you took a picture of during said activity. Not true!

Instead, you should create a list of every single image you used and place titles next to each individual object. It makes it clearer for everyone reading your email.

Once again, keep in mind the context of your message. Would a client really want to see a bunch of memes pertaining to cats and dogs? Probably not. Unless you work for a company that embraces silly material, steer clear of inappropriate jokes. Even though humor can lighten the mood, it doesn't mean you should throw around rude phrases.

Also, don't forget to ask permission before sharing anyone's private information. Never share sensitive details without asking someone beforehand. Plus, never distribute confidential data. Always double check who actually owns the copyright to any given content.

Finally, stay safe. Be wary of phishing scams and follow basic internet safety practices.

How do you send an attachment politely?

While it isn't required by law, it's generally considered good practice to sign off your email with a brief signature block. This allows recipients to learn more about you personally and shows professionalism. Some examples of signatures include "Sincerely yours," "Best wishes," "Respectfully," and "Regards." To add a signature to Gmail, head to Settings & General Controls & Signatures. There, you can customize the default ones provided by Gmail or search for additional templates.

But wait. Before signing off, there's one final question left unanswered. What do you write at the bottom of your email when sending an attachment? Yes, that's correct. Nothing is worse than receiving an overly large file and having to delete it quickly because you didn't feel comfortable waiting days for it to download.

"A polite ending to an email includes a request that the reader review the attached materials before opening," writes Livengood. "An appropriate suggestion is to allow 24 hours for the attachment to reach the intended destination."

Sending a lengthy email filled with attachments can certainly lead to problems, especially if you're trying to impress somebody. Asking readers to please look at the file prior to downloading is a nice gesture, but it's easy for people to ignore these requests if they aren't expecting them. Still, if you're ever unsure about whether to send an attachment, err on the side of caution. Take advantage of tools available to help ensure delivery rates remain high.



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