What is CC in Email?

Ensuring everyone on your team is kept in the loop when organizing meetings, managing projects, delegating tasks, or simply sharing information is a crucial part of good collaboration. Luckily, email is usually all you need to do this, and despite the rise in instant messengers and team chats, email still provides you with exactly the right kind of functionality to ensure sharing is made simple.


CC is one email-based feature that allows you to share seamlessly with multiple contacts both inside and outside your company, keeping everyone connected and informed. But what does CC mean in email and how do you ensure your entire team is using it correctly? Here we breakdown the importance of the CC field, highlight the best times to use it, and advise you on how to use it in your daily communications.



What Does CC Mean in an Email?

The answer to what is CC in email can be traced back to the very early days of electronic communications. Taking a cue from standard letter writing, CC stands for carbon copy—a method of duplicating handwritten or typed letters using carbon paper. In order to provide users with a familiar term, CC was adapted as a way to send multiple copies of the same email to different email addresses.


In essence, CC in email works in conjunction with the “To” field. Your primary recipient is added in the “To” field, and any other recipients you wish to bring into the conversation can be added to the “CC” field. Using CC in your emails allows you to add any number of contacts that, while not necessarily requiring a reply, may wish to be kept in the loop on anything from meeting minutes to project briefs.



When to Use CC 

Knowing when to use CC in an email is an important part of good email etiquette and forms professional communication best practices. It can also help you save time, allowing you to share information with contacts without constantly having to forward emails after the fact. Here, we’ve listed a few of the most common reasons to use CC in an email.


  • Keeping People in the Loop — Whether a manager or colleague has specifically asked to be CC’d, or you want to share pertinent information with another contact, keeping people in the loop is among the most common ways to use CC.
  • Introducing a Contact — Introducing two of your contacts to each other is another common way to use CC in an email. Simply write your introduction email and then add the contacts you wish to include.
  • Internal Newsletters — The “CC” field is often used when sending internal newsletters or other mass emails within large companies. Using the “CC” field rather than the “To” field often indicates that no response is required in these instances.


It is important to remember not to overuse the CC function when sending emails, and it should also be noted that the BCC field fulfills a separate function. Remember, CC is mostly used to share information that doesn’t necessarily require a reply. Additionally, be as sparing as possible with your usage of CC to ensure you don’t bombard your contacts with useless information.



How to Send a CC Email

Learning how to send a CC email is simple, and most people will already be well versed in its usage. The “CC” field is usually found within your email composition window, below the “To” field and above the “BCC” field. All you need to do is add your primary contact in the “To” field and then include the contacts you wish to share the thread within the “CC” field. You should always double-check you have included the correct contacts in the correct fields, particularly when using both CC and BCC in tandem, as sharing confidential email addresses with others can be problematic.


? For more information on how to use CC, BCC, and other email functions, you’ll find everything you need in our resource section. Alternatively, for the latest news on Spike and a wealth of useful tips and tricks on everything from productivity to mindfulness, check out the Spike blog today.