How to write an apology letter to a client

Written by jennifer vanbaren
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How to write an apology letter to a client
Writing an apology letter to a client is difficult, yet necessary. (Jupiterimages/BananaStock/Getty Images)

Writing an apology letter to a client is an unpleasant, difficult task. Apology letters are extremely important for maintaining a business's reputation and satisfying the customer. These letters are used in many circumstances, including when a customer is unsatisfied or when a company makes a mistake. Saying you are sorry is often easier when written in letter form than doing it face-to-face or over the phone.

Skill level:

Things you need

  • Computer
  • Printer
  • Paper
  • Pen

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    Writing an Apology Letter

  1. 1

    Write the company information at the top. An apology letter written to a client is normally written on company letterhead. If company letterhead is not available, include the company name, address and phone number on the top, left-hand side of the letter. Include the date of the letter one space below the company information.

  2. 2

    Address the person directly. An apology letter should be addressed to the person who was hurt or affected by the situation. For example, "Dear Ms. Smith."

  3. 3

    Explain the reason for the letter. A letter of apology written to a client is used to tell the client you are sorry. Acknowledge that you are extremely sorry for the situation that occurred.

  4. 4

    Describe the events of the situation. Specifically name the problem and explain that it is the reason they are receiving the letter. Never place blame on the client or someone else. Take full responsibility for the event that occurred.

  5. 5

    Offer your perspective. Without criticising or blaming the client, include details of why you feel the company made the decision it did that caused the problem.

  6. 6

    Tell the client they are appreciated. Explain to the client how important they are to the company.

  7. 7

    Offer details to remedy the problem. During this point in the letter, focus on what your company is doing to avoid the same problem in the future. Avoid discussing what you cannot do or what you wish you would have done. Instead, focus all details on the future. Offer the client a refund or credit and make sure the client knows that you and your company take all problems very seriously.

  8. 8

    Close the letter with "Thank You" or "Sincerely," then sign the letter. The letter should be personally signed with pen regardless of whether it is typed or handwritten.

Tips and warnings

  • An apology letter written to a client varies in length, but is typically three to five paragraphs long.
  • You can type or handwrite the letter. Personal nonbusiness apology letters should always be handwritten, while business apology letters can be handwritten or typed.

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