Punctuation is an area of language that is frequently overlooked by English speakers who focus on the choice of words, grammar rules, and different writing styles.
It is, in fact, a method of silent intonation. Creating tension and internal movements within your text that are similar to stops, pauses, or emphatic techniques used in oral conversations.
As reported by many users of our Punctuation Checker software, even native speakers find it difficult to properly use punctuation marks in all cases. Which frequently makes their email correspondence look less professional than desired.
Here Are 10 Prime Punctuation Mistakes English Speakers Make In Emails:
Below, are the 10 most widespread mistakes in this sphere that you can use as a reference for proofreading your texts and avoiding these confusing problems.
1. Quotation Marks
One of the most popular punctuation mistakes made by English speakers in emails is the unnecessary use of quotation marks. They should only be used in situations when you actually quote something.
|As our client, Mark said, “This is the best customer service I have ever seen”.||You can get the ‘best service in our city’ if you contact us now.|
2. Missing Commas
Missing commas are another widespread problem in email marketing. If you use long sentences (which we would not advise you to do in the first place), you must make sure that you use punctuation marks to divide them into logical fragments that are more ‘manageable’ to read.
|Black Friday ends, but our discount programs for long-term clients remain indefinitely.||This product may seem excessively expensive at first glance yet it is worth the extra cost if you use it professionally.|
3. Extraneous Apostrophes
Many writers tend to place apostrophes in the places where they should not be used. This mistake comes from mixing their use for contractions versus their use to form the plural form of nouns or other similar constructions.
|You needn’t have done it.||Until Friday, you can buy ten bottle’s for the price of five.|
4. Excessive Commas
Commas are usually used to separate multiple items within lists, series of adjectives, introductory phrases from the main sentence, or complete sentences.
Unfortunately, the rules of punctuation in this sphere are extremely complex and somewhat contradictory, which frequently leads to the use of excessive punctuation marks by writers.
|Our newest product has received the highest ratings in a recent review from Agency A, and it is already available in our store.||Our product is a fantastic, one-of-a-kind, electronic communication device.|
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5. Dashes and Hyphens
Some writers use dash signs instead of hyphens, which may be deemed a punctuation mistake making your emails look unprofessional. Make sure to use hyphens and dash marks correctly!
|1. We offer high-quality electronics.|
2. Our clients prefer tablets – they are more portable than traditional PCs and laptops.
|1. We offer high–quality products and services.|
2. Consider our latest offerings from Oppo – their smartwatches are almost as good as their Apple counterparts.
6. Exclamation Marks
While exclamation marks can be used to put emphasis on certain sentences or calls to action, they should be used sparingly.
|Our Christmas sale will continue until the 30th of December or until our last stored products are sold, whichever comes first. Make sure to place your order early!||Our Christmas sale will only last one week! When our discounted items are gone, they are gone! Place your order now!|
Colons effectively serve as highlights within your text to signal some in-depth information clarifying the facts discussed earlier.
The main ‘rule of thumb here is to never separate verbs from subjects and objects linked with them or nouns from the verb linked with them.
|We presently offer our subscription plans in three variants: standard, premium, and custom.||The three subscription plans offered by us are standard, premium, and custom.|
8. Parentheses and Brackets
These punctuation marks are frequently used in email marketing. However, many English speakers make the mistake of putting exclamation points, question marks, and periods before parentheses and brackets.
|As soon as you receive your package (in a branded self-seal box), please, inform our manager about the successful delivery.||As soon as you receive your package, (in a branded self-seal box), please, inform our manager about the successful delivery.|
Semicolons are usually used in cases when you join independent clauses within the same larger sentence without using conjunctions. When you use ‘and’ between the same parts, you should not use one, which is frequently forgotten by some English speakers.
|We recruited the best engineers to design our product in 2020, and this decision has proven to be one of the best strategic choices we have made so far.||We recruited the best engineers to design our product in 2020, and this decision has proven to be one of the best strategic choices we have made so far.|
Ellipsis marks are usually used to replace some omitted sentence fragments or create a pause in your speech. This gives your readers some space for thought or you can leave your sentence on a cliffhanger prompting them to read on.
Unfortunately, many marketers overuse them and create unnecessary confusion and ‘trailing off’ effects as a result.
|You will not believe how many marketers make the mistake of…||These marketing communication techniques are powerful but have a number of significant implications…|
We hope that this brief guide will help you improve your writing style and achieve the perfect readability of your texts.
In the highly competitive world of today, the quality of your email correspondence may determine the attitude of your readers and make you look more reliable and competent than your rivals.
If you have discovered multiple problems in applying the above-mentioned rules, you may want to check our other guides. You can also use our punctuation-checking software to be 100% certain about your writing style quality.