How to sign documents electronically

Electronic signature platforms allow users to sign documents online while streamlining document management processes. With an eSignature, you don’t need to create a sample or physically sign and send it by mail to a recipient to get a second signature. You don’t even need to sign, scan or send documents via email. In order to work at a higher level of efficiency, let’s learn how to implement eSignatures into routine processes.

What is an electronic signature?

According to US law, an electronic signature is a symbol, sound or process which is associated with a document that is performed or adopted by a human with the intent to sign.
Usually, people draw their real signatures or type their names in a hand-written style in the required space.

Does an electronic signature mean the same as a digital signature?

An electronic signature is a sign by a human that can have various forms, from typing their name to creating complex autographs. A digital signature is defined as a generated and authenticated code that you attach to a document to verify the validity of its content.

People often confuse the meaning of electronic and digital signatures and even now, most don’t realize there’s a difference. If someone wants you to validate a document, ask them what type of signature they prefer.

Why should you use an electronic signature?

The answer to this question is pretty clear. You should sign documents electronically because of convenience and speed. Speed is the essential advantage of an eSignature. The time it takes to create hard copies, then sign, scan and send them back has passed. Avoid spending your day completing documents if you want to succeed in the modern business world. You might think that you sign papers fast, but try to calculate all the time spent on this process. You will be unpleasantly surprised. If the current state of affairs doesn’t satisfy you, get acquainted with eSignature.

Who is the best electronic signature provider out there?

Nowadays, more and more developers are implementing eSignatures into their software. You can find many different ways for how to sign a document electronically on different platforms: Mac, Windows, on your iOS or Android devices, etc. For example, in the latest versions of macOS, you can find a Sign option in Preview — a feature on all Apple computers by default. There are many online services offering different levels of service, ranging from free to expensive. The main differences are convenience, security and additional features. Take a look at the number of Google search results you’ll get from a simple search to understand the variety.

How can I electronically sign a document?

Different services offer different methods for how you can create an eSignature. Let’s take a look at the main ones:
  • Drawing. Draw a signature using a mouse or a trackpad.
  • Typing. Type your name or initials and select the generated hand-written signature you prefer.
  • Capturing. You write your signature on a piece of paper and capture it by using your device’s camera.

If somebody sends you a document to sign, these signing opportunities may be limited by the owner of the sample. For example, they can allow you to create an eSignature only by drawing or capturing to ensure that you’re the one who made the signature. But most likely, you will have all the methods available for use.

When you look for a service you’ll most likely be paying attention to the number of possible ways to get a signature on your documents. The variety of available options shows the quality of service in general. Since you can’t be sure about the security and convenience when the platform doesn’t provide a full list of options, pay attention to the warnings before using the service.

What is the easiest way to electronically sign a document?

signNow is probably the best solution that exists on the market today because of its simplicity and accessibility from any device. That’s why we advise you to sign your documents electronically using this service.

Head over to signnow.com or install the mobile application from the PlayMarket or AppStore and sign up. You can also use a Google account to complete your registration in just a few seconds. When you see the main menu with documents open, complete these simple steps to add an electronic signature wherever you need:

  1. Click Upload documents at the top of the screen (in the web version) or tap Create (on mobile).
  2. Browse for the file you need and add it to signNow. The platform supports uploading documents in PDF, Word and image formats.
  3. Select the My Signature tool.
  4. Create an electronic signature in your preferred way: by drawing, typing or capturing/uploading.
  5. Change the place and size of your autograph if needed.
  6. Save your electronically signed document.

Next, you can download the sample doc, export it to Google Drive, merge it with other documents, send it via email, or use many other useful features. The whole signing process only takes a minute of your time. And signNow will save much more in the future, especially if you need to sign documents from your office, while on the go, or on a business trip where finding a printer might not be possible.

In addition to an eSignature service, you will get access to powerful opportunities such as automating workflows for your company and optimizing document management.

So don’t hesitate to use modern technologies for streamlining your business and improving your life. With signNow, it’s much easier!

By signNow's Team
By signNow's Team
May 13, 2020