With flooded inboxes and booked schedules, we’re usually firing off emails in a rush. Naturally, from time to time, we’re bound to send a few typos.

However, studies show typos and grammatical errors do matter and can hurt credibility. A study by researchers at North Carolina State University found that if an email message contained errors, college students regarded the sender as “less conscientious, intelligent, and trustworthy,” according to TheConversation.com.

Always start with a greeting, and be polite and professional throughout your email. Write in complete sentences, and don’t use acronyms your clients may not understand. Make sure your message is brief and well-organized, and avoid using all caps and exclamation points. End your email by thanking the client and providing your contact information along with the next steps, such as following up with a phone call or booking an appointment.

For important emails, use a text-to-speech (TTS) reader to catch errors. For example, TTSReader will read text aloud at various speeds, allowing you to hear aloud what you’ve written. This is a great way to catch errors and see if your intended message is coming across clearly.

Be sure to watch for these common grammar pitfalls:

• “It’s” means “it is,” while “its” signifies possession.
• “A lot” should be two words.
• Use “farther” when discussing distance; use “further” when discussing progress.
• Use the correct “your” or “you’re.”
• “Affect” is generally a verb that means to influence, and “effect” is a noun used to describe something that was influenced. Something affects you and has an effect on you.