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Greatly Appreciated: Meaning and Proper Usage

When you travel to native English speaking countries or areas, you will hear common phrases and terms, like “Thank you,” for example, in very different ways.

Expressions like these are sometimes colloquial, meaning that they are most commonly only used in specific areas or by certain people. Hearing someone thanking you by saying “Greatly appreciated” can be bewildering. 

The phrase “greatly appreciated” is used to express gratitude for a favor or kind gesture that you have experienced. It is a widely accepted phrase; however, using the right context and tone is essential for a good response. Other similar expressions include “much appreciated” and “deeply appreciated.”

Keep reading to find out the proper usage of the phrase “Greatly appreciated” and what it means when someone uses it instead of merely saying, “Thank you.”

What Does “Greatly Appreciated” Mean?

We use the phrase “greatly appreciated” as an alternative way of thanking someone or expressing gratitude towards someone for something they’ve done for you, such as a kind gesture or favor.

“Greatly appreciated” is a simplified way of saying something such as, “Your gesture was greatly appreciated.”

You can use this phrase as a stand-alone phrase in a sentence, in a written letter, or an email. 

It is good to note that “greatly appreciated” is not as often used as a stand-alone phrase, unlike other variations of the phrase, including “much appreciated” which individuals commonly use on their own.

Is It Correct To Say, “Greatly Appreciated?”

Saying “greatly appreciated” is a widely accepted way of thanking someone in various scenarios. 

As mentioned before, this phrase is an abbreviated way of saying, “X is greatly appreciated.” It is the shortened way of letting someone know what they did is appreciated to a large extent in a full sentence.

Whether the phrase is grammatically correct or not is another question. We can see that the expression is, in fact, grammatically correct by breaking it up. Simply put, “greatly” is an adverb, and “appreciated” is a verb.

“Greatly”

The word “greatly” is an adverb as it describes the verb that follows it. “Greatly” represents the quantity of the verb. In this phrase, it explains the amount of appreciation expressed.

The formal definition of the word is to describe something as being to a large or great extent.

Examples of the word “greatly” in a sentence:

  • My taste in clothing varies greatly.
  • The speed of a car greatly surpasses that of a snail.
  • Your assistance with my son’s homework is greatly appreciated.
  • She was not greatly affected by the situation.

“Appreciated”

Dog, Sheltie, Kindness, Love, Appreciation, Happy
Image by staffordgreen0 via Pixabay

The verb “appreciated” is a past tense word that describes gratitude or appreciation of something or someone (source).

Examples of the word “appreciated” in a sentence:

  • I appreciated every minute of the phone call.
  • The dog never appreciated being left at home.
  • Yesterday, he finally showed that he appreciated my gift.
  • Jessica knew that she could not let the moment go unappreciated.

When Is It Appropriate To Say, “Greatly Appreciated?”

Although it is acceptable to use, using “greatly appreciated” in the right way makes all the difference. In general, saying that something is “greatly appreciated” is most effortlessly accepted in an informal setting. For example, you are thanking a friend.

However, this phrase is also commonly used in formal situations, but you have to be quite careful.

Context

You can use “greatly appreciated” in a formal setting if the context is right. For example, you can use it when someone is offering to help you with something. In this case, it is difficult to take your thanks in the wrong way. 

If you use “greatly appreciated” to ask someone to help you with something, you want to be careful to use the right tone. In this case, someone can misinterpret how you have asked for help.

Tone

Choosing the right scenario and tone to use “greatly appreciated” makes all the difference. Using this phrase in a formal setting, or in letters and emails, is especially tricky. 

If you ask someone to help you with something at work or in an email, and you end your request with “greatly appreciated,” it is possible that they can interpret your request as a command.

For example, “Hello Amy, could you please go and pick up today’s coffee order? It’ll be greatly appreciated.”

It might not sound bad if you use a friendly, genuine tone (source). However, in a formal setting, being asked to do something in this way is likely to feel as if it is not a request but rather expected, and the appreciation does not feel genuine.

It is unlikely for a good friend to misinterpret the way you have thanked them unless it is in an email. Emails can come across as short and are sometimes interpreted differently by different people.

If you are wondering the same thing about the phrase “much appreciated,” read “Is It Correct to Say “Much Appreciated?” explaining when it is appropriate to use an expression like this.

How to Use “Greatly Appreciated” in a Sentence

Thanks, Gratitude, Smile, Appreciation, Hands Together
Image by Free-Photos via Pixabay

The phrase “greatly appreciated” is complicated when you consider that the word “appreciated” is in the past tense.

You can only use the word “appreciated” in the past tense. “Greatly appreciated,” on the other hand, is used in all three main tenses, past, present, and future tense. 

Here are some examples of the phrase “greatly appreciated” in a sentence:

ExampleTense
Your help with setting up the party was greatly appreciated. Thank you!Past
Exchanging research is going to be greatly appreciated.Future
It was greatly appreciated when you escorted my parents to their car.Past
Your opinions are greatly appreciated here.Present
The dog is going to be a greatly appreciated guest among the children.Future

As the examples showcase, the phrase stays the same regardless of the tense used. These examples sound quite formal and are set with a friendly tone. 

Other Phrases To Use Instead of “Greatly Appreciated”

If “greatly appreciated” is not feeling organic for you, there are various other phrases that you could use instead to express your gratitude towards someone who has done something nice for you, or who you are requesting a favor from. 

The following examples are other equivalents of the phrase:

  • Highly appreciated
  • Much appreciated
  • Highly valued
  • Deeply appreciated
  • Highly regarded

Here are some examples of the above equivalents of “greatly appreciated” in a sentence:

Highly appreciatedYour involvement at the soccer match was highly appreciated, John.
Much appreciatedCould you please send me the information tonight? Much appreciated!
Highly valuedJaney, how you sang on my birthday was highly valued by my mother.
Deeply appreciatedIt is deeply appreciated when you express your feelings.
Highly regardedIt will be highly regarded if you could show up for work on time.

Trying out other ways of saying “greatly appreciated” can affect the way your message is received. You can find a copy of The Oxford New Essential Dictionary on Amazon for more words that you can use. 

“Greatly appreciated” could come across as insincere as it is so widespread as to lose its meaning. If you want to show that your message is genuine, try something less used with a more sincere adverb, like “deeply appreciated.”

There are plenty of other ways to express your gratitude that you can try out as well (source).

Is It “Greatly Appreciated” or “Greatly Appreciate It?”

Determining when to use “greatly appreciated” or “greatly appreciate it” comes down to the subject of the sentence. 

If the subject is a personal pronoun — such as I, you, we, or they — the correct phrase to use is “greatly appreciate it.” If the sentence’s subject is referring to a common noun, such as help, gift, or advice, then the correct phrase to use is “greatly appreciated.”

There are two cases where you could hear “greatly appreciate it” in passing. One is correct, and one is incorrect.

The First Case

The first way that you can hear “greatly appreciate it” is if you listen to it in passing when what was actually said was “greatly appreciated.”

In this case, the phrase “greatly appreciate it” is incorrect as the context will be wrong. 

Examples of “greatly appreciate it” misuse:

  • Thank you for the help on Friday; it was greatly appreciate it. 
  • The gift I got from my sister was greatly appreciate it. 
  • My advice is always greatly appreciate it!
  • The article you sent me was greatly appreciate it, thank you.

All the above examples are wrong and are examples where you might have misheard “greatly appreciated.”

The Second Case

The second way that you can hear “greatly appreciate it” is when the subject of the sentence is a personal pronoun. For example, I, you, we, and they. 

In this case, the phrase “greatly appreciate it” is correct as the context is right. 

Examples of “greatly appreciate it” with correct use:

  • I greatly appreciate it when you say goodbye to me when leaving for work.
  • Once the children are in bed, I kiss them goodnight, and they greatly appreciate it.
  • Thank you for all of your help; we greatly appreciate it.
  • Every time he brings you your coffee, you greatly appreciate it, don’t you?

How To Say “Greatly Appreciate It” in Plural Form

In some cases, when the personal pronoun is either he, she, or a name, and the sentence is in the present tense, the phrase “greatly appreciate it” will change to the plural form.

If this is the case, “greatly appreciate it” becomes “greatly appreciates it.” Here are some examples:

  • I know that he greatly appreciates it when you play ball with him.
  • Annie greatly appreciates it when her father watches her soccer games.
  • When I help with the dinner, she greatly appreciates it.

It does seem confusing to trust how something sounds. Often if it doesn’t quite sound right, it might not be.

“Would Be Greatly Appreciated” or “Is Greatly Appreciated”?

Using both “would be greatly appreciated” and “is greatly appreciated” are correct, depending on the intention of the phrase. 

If you would like to ask someone for help or favor and express gratitude before they agree to the task, you use “would be greatly appreciated” as the help or favor has not happened yet.

If you are receiving help or a favor in the present continuous, you use “is greatly appreciated” as the help or favor happens in the present continuous.  

Here are some examples of how one sentence can be used in two different tenses using “greatly appreciated” and “is greatly appreciated”:

Future TensePresent Tense
If you could please help me with my essay, it would be greatly appreciated.Your helping me with my essay is greatly appreciated.
Your advice after exams would be greatly appreciated.Your advice after exams is greatly appreciated.
Any donation made before Friday would be greatly appreciated.Any donation made before Friday is greatly appreciated.

The phrase can be used in any tense. Just make sure that the wording before the phrase fits the tense correctly for your sentence to make sense.

“Greatly Appreciated” or “Appreciated Greatly”?

One possible misuse of the phrase “greatly appreciated” is to say “appreciated greatly” instead. 

If you use the phrase incorrectly, the structure of your sentence is completely different, and the sentence sounds unnatural. This is because with “appreciated greatly,” the adverb is after the verb. 

Here are some examples to compare the right use with the misuse of the phrase:

CorrectIncorrect
The gift you sent me is greatly appreciated.The gift you sent me is appreciated greatly.
Yesterday’s discussion was greatly appreciated.Yesterday’s discussion was appreciated greatly.
The favor will be greatly appreciated.The favor will be appreciated greatly.

Grammatically, the adverb needs to come before the verb. This is why “greatly appreciated” is acceptable to use and not “appreciated greatly.”

Final Thoughts

Using common colloquial terms and common English phrases is a good way to learn and become more comfortable with the English Language.

Now that you understand more about the phrase “greatly appreciated,” listen for it when you are around native English speakers to hear it in action. 

You’ll find that your understanding will grow exponentially the more you learn and expose yourself to the language. Put your skills to the test by trying out these phrases and keep up the good work!