Tag Archive for: numbers

When to use numbers instead of bullets for lists

When should you use numbers instead of bullets for indented lists? I agree with Edward P. Bailey Jr., who says in The Plain English Approach to Business Writing:

I suggest numbered lists when the order of the items is especially important; otherwise use bulleted lists.

If you use numbers when the items’ order is not important, readers may mistakenly assume that the order is important.

When you write lists, don’t forget to use parallel construction. That will also help readers to understand your message.


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