Electronic Signatures

Hot To Get an Electronic Signature: 5+ Hassle-Free Ways Explained

Will Cannon

Electronic signatures are superior to ink signatures in more ways than one. 

That’s why instead of talking about the benefits of online signatures, we’ll show you how to get an electronic signature — the easy way. We’ll discuss multiple options — free and paid — for you to get an electronic signature from anyone, anywhere.

By the end of the article, you’ll know the best way to get an electronic signature for yourself.

Let’s get started.

Use an Electronic Signature Software (Windows & Mac)

Here’s how to electronically sign documents with Windows and Mac:

Signaturely

Signaturely is a simple and effective electronic signature software created to help you upload documents and legally sign them online as fast as possible.

Signaturely is a simple and effective document signing tool made to help you upload documents and collect electronic signatures from any device.

With Signaturely, you can quickly start sending signature requests and handling multiple documents through a responsive and intuitive UI.

Why Signaturely is one of the best tools to sign documents  

Here are some of Signaturely’s best features:

  • Intuitive UI: Signaturely is so simple you can get started sending your first signature request within minutes.
  • Free plan: Unlike many other alternatives, you can use Signaturely’s free-forever plan to send up to three signature requests per month.
  • Powerful management: Expedite the signing process with in-app reminders for users to sign your contract.
  • Guided signing process: Signaturely guides everyone step by step, making it easy and convenient for anyone to get a signed document online.

How to get a signed document with Signaturely

Signaturely is simple. Here’s a step-by-step guide for using it:

  • Step 1 – Get your documents ready: Upload your documents to the platform, add signature fields, and send your signature requests.
  • Step 2 – Supervise the process: Signaturely will let your users know their signature is required. It will then guide them through every step of the process, from creating their online signature to completing your last signature field, all while keeping you in the loop.
  • Step 3 – Expedite the process: If anyone is taking a long time to sign, you can send them a gentle reminder in-app to get things moving again.
  • Step 4 – Collect signatures: Once you’ve collected your signatures, Signaturely will store your signed document for you so it will never be damaged or compromised.

Pricing 

Signaturely offers very affordable pricing. Signaturely has a limited forever-free tier, great for anyone in need of a few signatures per month.

Paid plans start at $10, and users get unlimited signature requests. And for only $15, users can fully unlock the tool, with branding, unlimited templates, and more advanced features.

Adobe Fill and Sign

Adobe Fill & Sign is a mobile app that allows users to sign papers with their iPhone or Android phone.

Made and backed by Adobe, Adobe Fill & Sign is a mobile app that allows users to sign papers with their iPhone or Android phone.

The app is easy to use, helping users create their signatures, sign documents, and send them to other signers.

Pros

Here are some of the best Adobe Fill & Sign features:

  • Simple UI
  • App available for Android and iOs
  • Intuitive navigation

Cons

Here are some of the cons of using Adobe Fill & Sign:

  • Very limited features
  • Users complain of it sending incomplete forms

Pricing

The Adobe Fill & Sign app is free to use.

Use Apple Preview (Mac users only)

Apple Preview offers Mac users a free and built-in online signing feature for anyone’s PDFs.

How to use Preview to get an electronic signature

Here’s how to use Preview to get electronic signatures, step by step:

  • Step 1: Open your PDF with Preview.
  • Step 2: Click on the Markup icon and select the Signature icon.
  • Step 3: Click on Create Signature and choose your TrackPad, camera, or your iPhone or iPad to create an electronic signature.
  • Step 4: Once you’re happy with your signature, click Done, and your signature will be saved to Preview.
  • Step 5: Go to the Signature icon again and place your signature fields.
  • Step 6: Sign your document.
  • Step 7: Send your signed document as needed.

Pros

  • Free for any Mac owner
  • Fairly easy process
  • Legally-binding signatures

Cons

  • Only available for Mac users
  • Asking for signatures with it may be troublesome

Pricing

Apple Preview’s electronic signature feature is free and built into the software.

Add Signature Lines in Word and Excel

You can also use either Word or Excel to get electronic signatures by adding signature fields in the document or spreadsheet of your choice.

How to add signature lines in Word and Excel

Here’s how to add signature lines in both Word and Excel:

Word

You can create a field to add a digital signature and create a digital signature directly using Microsoft Word.

Follow these steps to add a signature line in Microsoft Word:

  • Step 1: Open your document.
  • Step 2: Go to the Insert tab and select Signature Line.
  • Step 3: Fill in the signature requirements and click OK.
  • Step 4: A signature line should now appear on your document.

Now that you have a signature line, you can sign documents with it. Here’s how:

  • Step 5: Double-click the newly created signature line.
  • Step 6: Type your name at the X, or upload an image of your signature to use as an online signature.
  • Step 7: Ensure the signature certificate associated is being issued by a reputable certificate authority.
  • Step 8: Click on Sign to sign your Word document.

Excel

Add a signature line in Microsoft Word

Here’s how to add a signature line in Excel:

  • Step 1: Select the cell where you want to insert your signature.
  • Step 2: Go to Text, click on Signature Line, and select Microsoft Office Signature Line. 
  • Step 3: Fill in the signature requirements and signer information as needed.
  • Step 4: A signature line should now appear on your document.

Now that you have a signature line in your spreadsheet, you can sign it. Here’s how:

  • Step 5: Double-click the newly created signature line.
  • Step 6: Type your name at the X, or upload an image of your signature to use as an online signature.
  • Step 7: Ensure the signature certificate associated is issued by a reputable certificate authority.
  • Step 8: Click on Sign to finish adding your signature.

Use the Adobe Sign Mobile App (Android / iOs)

Add a signature line in Excel

If you want to get electronic signatures using a mobile device, you can use the Adobe Sign Mobile App. This app allows you to remotely create and sign PDFs, manage proposals, and integrate with multiple cloud hosting platforms.

Created by Adobe, this app offers a few attractive features, although its pricing may be too expensive for many.

How to use Adobe Sign Mobile to get an electronic signature

Here’s how to get an online signature with Adobe Sign Mobile:

  • Step 1: Install and open the Adobe Sign Mobile app.
  • Step 2: Log in or register for Adobe Sign.
  • Step 3: Tap Send for Signature and select Documents.
  • Step 4: Tap anywhere on the document.
  • Step 5: Add your signature if needed.
  • Step 6: Select Recipients.
  • Step 7: Add the email addresses from your recipients, or tap on Contacts to search through your contact list.
  • Step 8: Tap Send.

Pros

Here are some of Adobe Sign Mobile’s pros:

  • Responsive app backed by a large company
  • Allows users to track their documents
  • Simple mobile app

Cons

Here are some of Adobe Sign Mobile’s cons:

  • Doesn’t have any advanced features
  • The UI could be streamlined to offer a faster experience
  • Fairly high pricing

Pricing

Adobe Sign’s pricing is higher than most other platforms, starting at $18.99 per month when billed annually or $29.99 when billed monthly.

Pricing for businesses and multiple users or users in need of deep integrations or advanced features is available upon request.

Use Mail and Markup (iPhone/iPad)

If you own an iPhone or iPad, you can also create and use an online signature in your Mail and Markup apps.

To do this, open your Mail app, go to Mail, click Preferences, and select Signatures. Then select the email account you want to link a signature to in the left column. In the middle column, you can name your signature to keep track of it. Finally, you can create your signature in the right column.

Once you have your signature, you can start using it to sign PDFs in your Mail app. You can also automatically add your signature to emails.

How to use Mail and Markup to get electronic signatures

Here’s how to get electronic signatures using Mail and MarkUp

  • Step 1: Open your Mail app.
  • Step 2: Go to Mail, tap on Preferences, and select Signatures.
  • Step 3: Choose the email account you want to link a signature to.
  • Step 4: Name your signature.
  • Step 5: Review your data and, when ready, create a signature in the right column.

This signature will now allow you to sign PDFs directly in your Mail app.

Pros

Here’s where this signing method shines:

  • Very convenient for anyone signing PDFs in emails
  • Allows users to use their signature in all emails

Cons

Here’s where this signing method is lacking:

  • Only works when using the Mail app
  • Only works for emails
  • Better for regular users of the app

Pricing

This is a free, built-in feature.

FAQ

Here are the answers to commonly asked questions about how to digitally sign a document:

What is an electronic signature?

According to the ESIGN Act, an electronic signature is “an electronic sound, symbol, or process attached to or logically associated with a contract or other record and executed or adopted by a person with the intent to sign the record.”

In other words, an electronic signature is an alternative to a handwritten signature to legally sign documents online.

Is there a difference between an electronic signature and a digital signature?

Electronic signatures are the digital form of handwritten signatures, whereas digital signatures are the electronic prints that tie the signature to the person. Digital signatures are basically what makes the signature legally binding.

What are the advantages of using electronic signatures?

eSignatures allow users to get legally binding signatures from anyone, anywhere. Users can request signatures and sign documents as needed to grow their business while saving time and resources.

Unlike ink signatures, electronic signatures are safer, harder to forge, and almost impossible to destroy.

Is it possible to get an electronic signature for free?

Yes, there are multiple tools to sign documents online for free. You can use built-in or free tools to get signed documents online.

You can usually get electronic signatures for free with tools like Word, Mail, and Preview, or use digital tools specifically made to get eSignatures online, like Signaturely.

Can an electronic signature be typed?

Yes, an electronic signature can be typed, drawn, scanned, and imported as an image file. The value from eSignatures comes from the digital print that ties the signer to the document, not on how closely they resemble their ink counterpart.

Are electronic signatures legally binding?

Yes. According to the ESIGN Act, eSignatures are legally binding as long as they can be authenticated.

That’s why multiple companies worldwide are embracing digital signatures as an affordable and convenient way to get legally binding signatures.

Conclusion 

As you can see, it’s easy to digitally sign any document from anywhere. An easy way to start signing documents online is by using an online signing platform like Signaturely.

Sign up for Signaturely for free, and start sending and requesting digital signatures today.

Create a free Signaturely account today!

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