How to use formatting options to compose an email in Outlook

Emails are definitely one of the most important and used services in the internet, since thanks to their acquired formal approach of communication electronic messages are the preferred way for enterprises to notify their employees about anything; from congratulations emails to inform about meetings and important notifications, emails are the tool to use by the majority.

Like this, since the late 1990s when online email platforms were created and with Microsoft as pioneer with the support and later purchase of Hotmail, emails became in an imperative services for internet users across the world. At present time, thanks to mobile devices like smartphones, tablets and laptops, people stay connected permanently and with email access 24/7.

However, there is a key matter that stand out when it comes to emails and almost nobody seems to realize, or at least give it the importance it deserves with no doubt; we are talking about of the formatting options to compose an email, as the tools to prepare and send a message that can express exactly what we want to say, since communication can be tricky, specially online.

Today we will be showing you how to use the different format options to compose messages in Outlook, as a renamed service offered by Microsoft with an easy-to-use, functional and reliable approach, as well as being very secured and trustworthy.

But before getting into details, you have to remember logging in into Outlook in first instance or create an account in case you do not have one, allowing you to enjoy a whole set of online and conjoined service that are quite useful, starting from Outlook to OneDrive, Skype and Office.

So, to access just enter the Microsoft´s site www.login.live.com and write you credentials or create a new account, by clicking in the button “No account? Create a new one”. Also, Outlook is now using a beta version that is more functional, faster and resource-friendly, so do not forget to activate this option by clicking in the “Outlook beta” switch option at the top right of the screen.

hotmail

hotmail

Handling composing screen tabs and the process to add receipts and subject  

When you get logged in on Outlook after entering your credentials correctly, your home page will appear with your messages and main folders, as well as some ads, news and other information on the screen.

At the very left of your home page you will be able to see the main folder panel, where you can easily access your inbox, junk emails, drafts, sent items, deleted items and archive. Now, at the top of such main folder panel you can see the option “New message” with a “+” icon that allows you to open the composing screen and start to write that email you need to send.

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Like this, the composing screen will pop up and will be placed at the exact location of the email reading section at the right of the screen, which shows you the content of selected messages in the inbox.

hotmail

In case you want to switch from the new message you are writing to see a selected message in the inbox, you can click in the option “Select an item to read” at the bottom of the composing screen, where this option as well as all of your new messages will be saved as tabs, which will be identified with the subject you give to every email.

hotmail

Getting back to the composing screen by clicking in the tab identified with the subject of the message you are writing, in here you can start by adding the receipt or receipts you are interested in sending the emails, as well as adding a proper subject in the next line below.

At this point of adding possible receipts in the email you are composing, you can include actual contacts directly by only clicking in the empty space of the line, popping out a list of suggested contacts to choose from.

hotmail

hotmail

Composing an email and using formatting options

After include valid receipts and subject in the composing screen, now is time to write the actual message we want to send. To do that, you just have to click in the empty space below the subject bar and you will be allowed to write anything you want.

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Now, you can write messages without changing anything regarding to fonts or letter style, but your message can be considered bored or not interested whatsoever, even getting unclear. To avoid that, you can use the formatting options to modify and change the way you write, helping to get your messages much clearer, interesting and calling the attention to be fully read.

So, these formatting option are located at the bottom of the composing screen, with several parameters to modify that we are going to address individually in details next, showing the different functions available that are actually plenty. To understand modifications in a better way, as we explain every option we will apply it to the message, in order to see how it looks.

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Specific text modifications options

First of all, the formatting options start by focusing on the different possibilities related to text directly, allowing us to change for example: the font itself, giving us more than fifty styles to choose from, as well as letting us modify the size of the font up to 72.

hotmail

hotmail

Next, we have the three classical options that cannot be missed in any text editor or composing screen of any email service out there; we are talking about Bold, Italic and Underline options.

In detail, these text functions are in a row on the formatting option panel and allow us to give effects to the words in order to stand out expressions in another language, specific parts of the message, as well as provide other functions.  

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And last but not least, the remaining options regarding fonts and text specifically are “Highlight” and “Font color”, and as their name say these functions work to highlight the selected text from the rest, while the other changes the color of the actual words of such text; actions that can have purposes of standing out specific and important expression, respectively.

hotmail

hotmail

Options for format change and indirect text modifications

After the options that allow to modify text in a direct way available in the formatting option panel, there are also the tools to change the general format of what you write in the message, as well as adding indirect text modifications that work to organize the email in a better and more complex way, especially when such emails are containing great amounts of information and require lists and other elements.

As classical options in this segment, you can add bullets and numbering to make lists and work with titles and subtitles, organizing the text and message in general in a better way for the receipts to understand it.

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Continuing, the rest of the options available have to do with other classical and special elements required to give a great format to an email we are writing: to increase and decrease indent, adding quoting; the possibility to align the center of the general message or a part of it to the left, center or right; to insert or remove hyperlinks, to add strikethrough effect and even insert a table.

Because of the many options available, the formatting option panel can be cut at one point and the rest of the alternatives will be shown after clicking to the corresponding pointing down arrow icon. Of course, this depends on the size of the screen you are using.

hotmail

hotmail

Other options to write emails available in Outlook

With Outlook you have plenty of options to send your emails, like adding attachments and files of different types, as well as images, videos and the possibility to insert smileys into the messages in order to make an email a little more fun.

All of this can be done by using the option panel below the formatting option bar, where the date and time of the saved draft is shown.

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As in the previous case, depending on your screen the option bar can be shown completely or cut at some point, creating an arrow icon to show the rest of the options left. In this case, there are important options to access by clicking in such arrow icon, like the possibility to remove regular text and activate the “Switch to plain text” option, removing modifications in case you do not need them and maybe you have a slow internet connection.  

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Finally, it is important to point out that you can delete or add changes you apply on the text, by only clicking in the “Undo” or “Redo” buttons in the formatting option panel.

hotmail