How to write a clarification email
Need help nailing down some details about a person, product, project, or appointment? You need to create a clarification email.
Also known as clarification letters, clarification emails are used to get the information required to move forward.
Writing a letter for clarification is easy if you follow our advice. In this article, we'll show you how to request clarification via email.
You'll learn how to structure email clarifications, what to include, and see how it works with 9 examples and a template.
Clarification email format
The clarification email format should be no surprise if you're already used to writing professional messages.
We can split clarification emails into three parts. It starts with a simple subject line.
You then clear up what you need to clarify in the email body. Finally, you finish each clarification letter with all the essential details and a suitable sign-off.
1. Clarification email subject line
Some people struggle to write subject lines, but the easiest thing to do is be upfront about what you want. Keep subject lines short, sweet, and simple – like these:
- Can you clarify some details?
- Clarification needed – (insert info)
- I need some extra information
- Would you be able to confirm some details?
- Extra information required
2. Clarification email body
We'll assume you've already got a relationship with the email recipient, so you don't need to introduce yourself (unless you want to). If that’s the case, it's best to get straight into business.
- I was pleased to receive your job offer earlier today. Before accepting, I would like to clarify some details.
- Thank you for sending me information about (product/service). Can you clarify some details for me, please?
It's a good idea to spell out precisely what information you need. Bullet points are the most effective way of listing out your questions. It also makes it easier for the recipient to go through them line-by-line and answer them.
Depending on the nature of your clarification request email, you may want to attach some information, including links, or add attachments. If you do, always explain what they are and why they matter.
3. How to end a clarification email
If you're facing a deadline, you should always include details about when you need to receive answers. If it's critical you get a response, you can offer to follow up. Include your contact details and how they can get in touch with you.
- I'm keen to make a decision this week, so can you provide me with answers by (date)? You can contact me on (insert details). If I don't hear from you by (date/time), I'll give you a call.
Make sure to add a sign-off (thanks, kind regards, etc.), your name, and your signature. And that's how to end an email asking for clarification. (We told you it was easy, now see our examples!)
Asking for clarification email examples
We've outlined the process to create clarification emails. Now, here are 9 clarification email samples and a template to show you how to apply these insights.
These samples tackle many common reasons you may need clarification. You can edit and adapt these as required to get the necessary information.
Follow the format, keep things clear, and always include your contact details!
1. Politely ask for clarification email sample
First up, here's a sample email seeking clarification. This is a standard clarification email that you can use to request some answers from anyone, including a colleague, customer, client, or professional.
2. Thank you for a clarification email sample
If someone is kind enough to provide the answers you need when you need them, it's polite to say thank you. Here's a helpful thank you template for email clarification.
3. Asking for clarification email to boss sample
Messaging your boss or manager is slightly different from the formal format we use above. The clarification email structure is still the same, but we can assume your boss is already on top of the details.
4. Clarification of dates email sample
Sometimes there can be misunderstandings about dates and times for meetings and appointments. You can set things straight with this email clarifying the dates if that happens.
5. Clarification email to client sample
It’s highly likely you'll need to clarify details with a client at some stage. In each case, you want to push for the information you need in a polite way to avoid damaging your relationships. This sample clarification email to a client will help you get the details and data you need positively and professionally.
6. Clarification email after interview sample
It sometimes happens that interviewers may need extra information after your meeting. For example, a potential new employer may ask a candidate for clarification on details about a previous role.
If you need extra information from a candidate, this clarification email after an interview provides the ideal structure.
7. Job offer clarification email sample
Congratulations on getting a job offer! Before accepting, you may want clarification about the terms and conditions or the salary. If that's the case, this job offer clarification email sample is for you.
8. How to reply for clarification email sample
If you've been asked to clarify some details, this clarification email reply sample provides a straightforward template to follow. In this example, you're a job seeker; this is how you reply to a recruiter asking for clarification.
9 Request clarification on invoice email sample
Writing invoice emails can be tricky and they are often an area where you may need more information and clarification.
It can be a sensitive area, particularly if your figures don't match, so concentrate on being polite and professional – as we have done in the invoice clarification email sample.
Clarification email template
If your clarification request isn't covered in the list above, or if you'd prefer to create your own, then use this clarification email template. You can use this any time further clarification is needed. Just be sure to fill in all the gaps, and proofread before sending.
Clarification email template with Flowrite
Asking for clarification or something else is fast using artificial intelligence.
Here's an example showing how Flowrite can write a formal request for you from a few instructions:
Final (clarifying) words
Clarification emails are simple to write – as long as you stick to the structure and focus on the outcomes.
We hope that our clarification email guide provides some simple guidelines to follow.
To clarify, the key is to keep things simple, provide all details you need, and remember you're dealing with a real person.
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