Even though it doesn’t get much attention, a professional’s email signature is one of the simplest and most powerful marketing tools at their disposal. Some people take the time to craft witty and memorable signatures that they hope accurately reflect who they are, while others prefer to forego the exercise altogether. We’ll break down the significance of signatures and provide some best practices for generating a legally binding one.
Email Signature: What Is It?
Any email client out there will let you set a signature or multiple signatures. An email signature is nothing more than a block of text that is appended to the end of every message you send. An electronic signature may include any combination of text, links, and graphics. In most cases, you’ll be able to choose whether or not it’s appended to both outgoing and incoming messages, and you’ll likely be able to set different signatures and default signatures for different email accounts.
Adding your signature in Word, PDF, Google Drive, and so on serves as additional contact information for marketing and customer service purposes. Phone numbers, fax numbers, toll-free numbers, cell phone numbers, direct lines, email addresses, URLs, and social media account URLs are all examples. Firstly, the person you’re emailing might not have that information and could need it, and secondly, if they forward one of your emails to someone else, you want that person to have all your contact information.
Your email in general needs to be addressed before we can get into the intricacies of signatures. If you want to make a good impression, use a businesslike email address like “firstname.lastname@example.org” when communicating with clients or potential investors. A free email service like Yahoo or Hotmail is not appropriate for business use. In addition, spam filters are less likely to flag your messages as junk.
What are the Rules for Email Signatures?
Though there are many recommendations and suggestions for handwritten signatures online, these are not rules. These rules can be broken just like any other, as long as the end result is still representative of you and your company in a professional and successful manner.
You should limit your signature to three or four lines.
- Using pipes (|) or colons (:) to demarcate informational nuggets allows for more compact lines (::).
- Don’t look at pictures. Usually, if you use the DocuSign competitors signature editor in your email client to include an image, that picture will be attached to any future messages you send. It’s likely that many people won’t even open the attachment because they’ve blocked it.
- They may also misinterpret the presence of an attachment in each email as evidence of a hidden document.
- In order to circumvent the attachment problem, if you must include an image in your signature, make sure it is the correct size, upload it to your server, and use an absolute URL to include it in your signature.
- Stay away from fancy typefaces and bright colors. A plain text signature will ensure a consistent appearance across all devices.
- Keep your lines between 72 and 80 characters long at most. Since some email clients and smartphones may have a limited display area, this will again help ensure a consistent look for your signature.
- Your name, company, position, and at least one other contact method should all be included.
- Please do not give out any personal information that you would wish to keep private, such as your home address or phone number. Don’t put down your home phone number if you don’t want to be disturbed while watching the game late at night.
- If you’re a freelancer operating out of your house, there’s no need to include your mailing address.
- If you’re traveling internationally, make sure you’re abiding by the rules in your destination country. For example, in the United Kingdom, your electronic correspondence must include your VAT number and the address where you are registered.
- Only include social media links if they are professional in nature. A personal Facebook account, for example, is probably best reserved for friends and family and is not acceptable for sharing with business contacts, but a Facebook Page for your company would be perfect in this regard.
- If your email client allows for multiple signatures, make a longer one for new messages and a shorter one for responses.
- Please refrain from including VCards with your messages. People you know probably won’t use them, and those who do probably won’t appreciate getting them in every single communication. If you need to make use of them, please offer a link to a separate file.
- Unless required by law, you should avoid including a legal disclaimer. People are less likely to read a lengthy disclaimer, and you definitely shouldn’t provide the kind of sensitive information that it would apply to by email anyhow.
- Warnings about virus screening should be omitted.
- Don’t use any famous sayings or quotes. You should take care to avoid saying or doing anything that can come across as rude or insulting in emails you send to people with whom you will be communicating for the first time.
- Never use a bullet point list to showcase all of your accomplishments and qualifications.Try to think outside the box when coming up with a name for yourself or your business; maybe a slogan or tagline would better describe what you do.
- Completely replacing your signature with an image is not acceptable. Please refer to the preceding section on image problems.
- Whenever you include a link to your website or another location, be sure to use the whole URL and HTML to make it a clickable link. Many email clients will transform a link or email address into a clickable one automatically, but some won’t. In case someone wishes to copy and paste the link, you should include the full address.
You can use this fantastic free electronic signature software if you’d like to include your real signature.