INQUIRY AND REPLY FIRST INQUIRY It is a letter sent to a supplier whom we have not dealt with previously. When we want to write first inquiry, we should mention how we obtained the supplier’s name and give some details about our own business. A reply to a first inquiry should be given special attention in order to create goodwill. Usually in first inquiry the customer needs information as follows: a. price/pricelist; b. sample/pattern; c. quotation; d. terms of payment; e. terms of delivery; and f. method of dispatch. To get such information, the customer usually asks the catalogue. It is a list of a firm’s product and the pricelist. USEFUL EXPRESSIONS IN FIRST INQUIRY Opening line 1. Dekkers of Sheffield inform us that you are manufacturers of (product name). 2. We learn from Spett, Mancienne of Rome that you are producing (product). 3. We saw your product at the Hanover Fair earlier this year and would like to know … 4. We have seen your advertisement in last Sunday’s Kompas. 5. Your advertisement in this month’s issue of The Shoemaker states that you can offer … 6. British Chamber of Commerce in Hamburg has given your name. Giving the details about the customer and indicating market 1. We are dealers in textiles and believe there is a promising market in our area for deliberately priced goods of this kind. 2. There is a brisk demand here for high quality (product) you manufacture. 3. These fancy goods are in demand during the tourist season, but for the rest of the year sales are moderate, and often rather low. 4. There is a steady demand in this country for (product) of high quality, and although sales are not particularly high, good prices are obtained. 5. Demand of this type of (product) is not high, but sales this year will probably exceed (how much). 6. You can count on a brisk turnover if prices are competitive and deliveries prompt. Asking for information/main section 1. Please let us have details of your various ranges including size, colors and prices, together with samples of the different qualities of material used. 2. Please send us a copy of your catalogue with details of your prices and payment terms. 3. It would be helpful if you could supply samples of the various skins in which the gloves (or another product name) are supplied. 4. Please state your terms of payment and discount allowed on purchases of quantities of not less than 500 of specific items. 5. Will you please send us your catalogue and pricelist for your (product name) 6. It would be helpful if you could send us samples showing your range of suitable coverings. 7. Please send us details of (product name) which you supply, together with prices. ROUTINE INQUIRY Inquiries for information about goods or services are sent and received in business all the time. The following are the guidelines in routine inquiry: 1. state clearly and concisely what you want - general information, a catalogue, pricelist, sample, quotation, etc. 2. if there is a limit to the price at which you are prepared to buy, do not mention this otherwise the supplier may raise the quotation to the limit you state. 3. most suppliers state their terms of payment when replying so there is no need for you to ask for them unless you are hoping for special rates. 4. keep your inquiry brief and concise. USEFUL EXPRESSIONS Opening line 1. We are interested in … as advertised recently in … 2. I was interested to see your ads for 3. I understand you are manufacturers of (dealers in) … and should like to receive your current catalogue. Main section 1. Please also state whether you can supply the goods from stock as we need them urgently. 2. If you can supply suitable goods, we may place regular orders for large quantities. 3. When replying please also include delivery details. REPLIES Replies to inquiry can also be called offering letter. It is normally fairly brief and does not need to be more than polite and direct. A reply to an inquiry will generally: a. Thank the writer of the letter of inquiry; b. Supply all information requested, and refer both to enclosures and to samples, catalogues and other items being sent by separate post; c. Provide additional information; d. Conclude with one or two line encouraging the customer to place orders and assuring him/her of good service. USEFUL EXPRESSIONS IN REPLY TO INQUIRY Opening line 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. Thank you for your letter of (date). As requested we enclose … I was pleased to learn that you are interested in our (name of product) Thank you for your enquiry dated … regarding … Many thanks for your inquiry of (date) We are pleased to have your inquiry about … Closes 1. 2. 3. 4. We look forward to receiving a trial order from you soon. We shall be pleased to send you any further information you may need. Any orders you place with us will have our prompt attention. Please let me know if you need any further details. Closing for Inquiry 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. We are looking to hearing from you soon. We would appreciate a prompt reply. We hope to hear from you shortly. Your prompt reply would be appreciated. I look forward to hearing from you soon. I hope to hear from you soon. Exercises Compose the first inquiry letter and its reply using full blocked styled and closed punctuation. You are an electronic distributor. You need a supplier to fulfill your customer’s need. So, you write a letter to Allwood and Sons Ltd, 22 Highland Way, Ashford, Kent, asking for full details and pricelist of their radios and television. You also ask whether they can arrange for their instruction booklets to be translated into the language used in your country. Tell them that you got their name from your partner, Mr. John William, the Chief of William X-nics Company, supplier of electronic spare part. Create your own company, use your own name to sign the letter. Write the reply from Allwood by saying thank for the inquiry. They enclose the catalogue showing all details of the product you need, the type, the price. They also offer special discount (10%) if the order is more than 100 radios and TV each. The quality is high and suitable with the market demand. Unfortunately, the booklets only use international language and cannot be translated in your language. Please submit the letters on Wednesday, June 3rd, 2009, from 8 to 10 am. You should type each letter and put it in the envelope. I really appreciate if you submit on time. Being late will reduce your score…sorry for that.