As reported by Fast Company, the study analyzed more than 350,000 email threads, determining not only that simply adding a signoff at the end of your email message improves the overall average response rate, but using one that offers a sense of gratitude significantly improves the chances that someone will write back.
Boomerang found that of the eight most popular signoffs -- which showed up more than 1,000 times apiece -- the ones that thanked the recipient for either reading and/or getting back to them were most effective. Specifically, of the eight most frequently used signoffs, the phrase "Thanks in advance" prompted the highest rate of reply, while slapping on a more bland "Best" resulted in the lowest. Here's the full list of eight signoffs, along with how they affected the rate of reply based on an average response rate of 47.5%:
1. "Thanks in advance" (+38.3%)
2. "Thanks" (+32.6%)
3. "Thank you" (+21.9%)
4. "Cheers" (+14.9%)
5. "Kind regards" (+13.5%)
6. "Regards" (+12.6%)
7. "Best regards" (+11.4%)
8. "Best" (+7.8%)
As one of Boomerang's data scientists points out, people may hesitate before dropping a "thanks in advance" since it can feel a bit presumptuous and passive aggressive, but the stats don't lie. The takeaway: if you want people to get back to you, don't leave your messages signoff-less, and ditch the generic and blah "Best" in favor of signaling in some way that you're grateful someone is taking the time to read and respond.
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