Have you ever received a PDF document via email, and you were required to sign it and send it back again via email? You must be wondering, Is there a way to sign a pdf document online quickly?
You will agree that the whole process is a big hassle. You have to print the document, then put your signature on the printed copy, scan back to its original format, before emailing it back to the sender. These are needless steps for what should otherwise be a relatively simple process.
There is a much straightforward way to approach such a situation. And it does not need any scanning or printing. Simply, invest in an eSignature software or system.
Good news! Foxit eSign offers a free 14 days trial period which enables you to sign a pdf online for free.
Perhaps the most significant selling point for e-signatures is their convenience. There are no printing, scanning, or postage costs to worry about. As a matter of fact, you can painlessly and quickly sign pdf documents or any other form of documents, with just a click of a button.
Another Great Perk of Sign Documents Online?
- Added security – Believe it or not, e-signatures are more secure than typical wet-ink signatures. Electronically signed documents contain traceable information, such as who completed the signature, the email of the signee, and the time the signature was executed. As you can guess, that’s more enforceable and stronger than your typical paper-based transaction.
- Workflow efficiency – With lesser delays, electronic signatures ensure improved efficiency in workflow. Tracking and managing documents is made easier, with less time and effort involved. Basically, most features of electronic signatures help accelerate the work process. For example, email notifications help remind the signee to sign the document, while status tracking helps the sender to know at which stage/phase the document is at.
Digital Signatures vs. Electronic Signatures
You will hear the phrase electronic signature and digital signature used interchangeably. Nonetheless, there is actually a big difference between these two forms of signatures.
E-signs are far simpler. In actual fact, they just involve a signee’s electronic agreement to a document. Usually, this can be represented by a cursive font, an image of your signature, or even a mouse-drawn signature.
By inserting some kind of representation of your signed name, you are basically authorizing that document, as legally binding – just like it would be if you used a wet-ink signature.
On the contrary, a digital signature is quite more involved and complicated. Digital signatures, “cryptographically attach your identity to a document using a method that cannot be forged,”
That said; in a good number of personal use cases, you will only require an e-signature – and nowadays, there are tens of platforms available in the market, which make that easy.
What to consider before signing online documents
Signing documents electronically or digitally is quite a straightforward process; however, here are three critical factors you should consider before jumping right in.
1. Ensure you understand what you are signing
Logically, you do not want to sign a document until you have studied it in its entirety. While added convenience and security is a perk synonymous with esignatures, that doesn’t imply that the document you are signing, is devoid of any imprecision or errors.
Even if it’s hundreds of pages of jargon, you must ensure that you comprehend what you agree to. In other words, thoroughly read the entirety of the paperwork you are signing, before making any consent.
2. Record retention
Record retention is a critical element you need to consider. If you use esignature software to sign pdf documents, most are designed to deliver a signed copy to all relevant recipients after the agreement has been completed.
That said; whether the platform automatically sends an extra copy to your inbox or you need to manually retrieve and then make a copy yourself, ensure you have a replicate of all the vital documents, which have your signature. That is important, especially if you ever need to make a reference to them to resolve an issue.
3. Security concerns
Some people are concerned that organizations like banks, for instance, are more than willing just to acknowledge an image of someone’s signature as binding. While that to some extent serves the purpose, it would be easy for someone to simply screenshot your signature and insert it on any document of their choice – without you even being aware.
However, many organizations have mitigated this risk by putting in place authentication tools and registration processes, which require users to confirm their identities. But remember; when you are signing any form of document – whether in-person or online – you should ask questions and clear any security concerns you have.
Easy steps: Sign documents online
Armed with all that information, it is time to get to the amazing stuff: signing a document online you. Here are two ways you can do it:
1. Use a simple image of your signature
Like we briefly mentioned above, when it comes to signing a document online, it can be as straightforward as uploading an image of your hand-drawn signature and then adding it on the relevant document.
It’s true – this seems very simplified. But, with e-signatures, it’s good to note, it is more about the intent than the real action.
2. Use an esignature software platform
While a simple image of your signature is enough, it’s usually more secure, faster, and easier to use an esignature solution to execute a signature online.
The popularity of electronic signatures has been on the increase, and thus, plenty of solutions and apps have emerged to help users sign documents electronically without any hassles.
Actually, some platforms even allow you to sketch your signature with your computer mouse. And yes, that still counts as a legal signature. After all, we mentioned that it’s the intent that matters!
Watch how to sign documents online with Foxit eSign
Summarized process of signing online documents via an esignature software
- Create an account with an eSignature platform of your choice. For most platforms, it takes a few seconds.
- Upload your documents to the account. You can easily upload documents from your computer or integrated applications like Evernote, Dropbox, etc.
- Select the person(s) authorized to sign the document. For most platforms, there will be three options: ” Me”, “New Signer”, or “Select from the existing signer”.
- Prepare your document for signature. Put your signature to all the appropriate areas.
- If applicable, send the document out to third parties to obtain their signatures. Easy as that!
Over to you
While the technology and complexities behind electronic signatures might feel somewhat overwhelming, signing pdf documents online is actually painless and convenient. All the best as you try this convenient, secure, and modern way of managing documents.
Register now and start using free 14 days trial period with Foxit eSign.