Which Sign-Off to Use, and When?
You’re finishing an email and wonder, which sign-off do I use? Well, the answer depends entirely on what type of email you are writing, who you are sending it to and how you want them to interpret the email you are sending. Are you sending an email with a funny cat attachment to your best friend, or are you sending a resume to a potential employer?
The intentions in both of these scenario’s are completely different. The first example is meant as a casual email that is good for a laugh and to make someone smile, and the second example should definitely have an element of professionalism to it. You don’t want to send your prospective employer a sign-off that says “With Love, Joe Blogs”, because that just screams “Crazy Person” louder than anything else.
Professional Email Sign-Off’s
- Best Regards
- Kind Regards
- Best Wishes
- Warm Regards
- Warmest Regards
- Yours Truly
- Yours Sincerely
Casual Email Sign-Off’s
- All The Best
- Yours Faithfully
- Lots of Love
- With Love
- Take Care
- See you around
Which one you choose is completely up to you. For your personal emails, you could choose one of the casual sign-off’s. For work, choose a professional sign-off and make sure you use an email signature with it.
Bonus Tip: A sign-off with an email signature dramatically increases brand awareness. With only 52% of all professionals using an email signature, many marketing opportunities are missed. You can easily make a free email signature here.
When Should Best Regards Be Used?
The most widely used sign off is “Best Regards” as it literally sends your best regards to the recipient. This one can be used in both a casual and professional context and that is probably why it is the most used sign-off. This is a good sign-off to use if you aren’t sure who the recipient might be or how they might interpret the email contents you are sending.
There are no bad examples for when to use “Best Regards” as it is suitable for most situations.
Thanks for reviewing my email, and I hope to hear from you soon.
When Should Kind Regards Be Used?
“Kind Regards” should be used when you are seeking something from the recipient and would like them to do something for you (like the example below). This sign-off is a little bit more formal than “Best Regards” so should only be used for the most formal emails, otherwise your recipient may think you are always very formal, and this might not be the impression you want to give.
There are no bad examples for when to use “Kind Regards” as it is suitable for most situations.
Please find attached the contract we discussed for $250,000. Could you please sign it and return to me at your earliest convenience.
If you have any questions, please feel free to contact me.
When Should Best Wishes Be Used?
It is acceptable to use “Best Wishes” in a formal context or even informal context as long as you are actually wishing your recipient the best in the future. If you are sending them an email saying “Sorry to hear about the death of your husband” and end it with “Best Wishes”, it doesn’t really sound right, and it shows that you haven’t thought about which sign-off to use for the occasion.
You are being investigated for fraud and will likely serve 21 years in prison if found guilty.
Thank you for choosing me to be your wedding celebrant. I hope you enjoyed your special day.
When Should Warm Regards Be Used?
This is the perfect sign-off to use for the “Sorry to hear about the death of your husband” example above. “Warm Regards” shows that you care about a sad occasion or that you understand that the recipient may be having a hard time with something. The word “Warm” is often associated with comfort, so it is good to use this sign off in sensitive situations.
I am sorry to hear that your husband died in a house fire.
I have been told of the unfortunate news about your mother. She will be missed by everyone.
When Should All The Best Be Used?
This is a similar sign-off to “Best Regards” or “Best Wishes”, however it should only be used casually or informally as it doesn’t have a professional tone to it and it also doesn’t define what “Best” really means. It could be interpreted in multiple ways and isn’t very descriptive. It should also be used if you are not likely to speak to the same recipient ever again.
I am saddened to hear that your wife had a tragic accident on the ski-boat that resulted in her death.
All The Best,
I trust that you had a great fishing trip in the Pacific Ocean. Hope to see you out there again soon.
All The Best,
When Should Yours Faithfully Be Used?
This sign-off is similar to “Warm Regards” as it has a heartfelt and sincere tone to it. “Yours Faithfully” should be used only when you are relying on a trust based relationship with your recipient. For example, you wouldn’t send an email saying “Please unload the bricks from the trailer” and end it with “Yours Faithfully” as it doesn’t sound right.
I have to tell you something, and it will be hard to hear. I have been having an affair with your sister.
I am hoping we can work out our difference of opinion, because our relationship means more to me than you realize.
When Should Lots of Love Be Used?
This sign-off should only be used casually with a close relative or spouse. Signing off with “Lots of Love” can be interpreted either as genuine or as an over-the-top exaggeration, depending who you are sending it to.
If I find out you have broken the valve again, your employment will be terminated immediately.
Lots of Love,
Our dinner date was fantastic last night, I had a great time. I would love to do it again.
Lots of Love,
When Should With Love Be Used?
This one is very similar to “Lots of Love”, but not as obnoxious sounding. “With Love” should be used with a close relative or spouse as it can show the recipient that you care about them and are sending the email “With Love”. It shouldn’t be used if you want the content you are sending in the email to be taken seriously.
Don’t lie to me again about seeing Robert. This is your last chance to make our relationship work, or its over.
Our wedding is booked for the 21st of January, I hope you are still looking forward to it.
3 Replies to “Best Regards, Best Wishes, Kind Regards, Warm Regards – Which One to Use?”
In British English, “Yours sincerely” and “Yours faithfully” are equally formal and used according to convention. If you address the person by name, use “Yours sincerely”; if you address an unknown recipient as sir or madam, use “Yours faithfully”.
People would find it weird if you used “Yours faithfully” when you know them by name, or if you claim to be sincere when you don’t know their name.
I’m curious what the correct sign-off is to the email “I have been having an affair with your sister”?