How To: Sign documents with your signature electronically

If you have had to sign a document that was sent to you via PDF, you know how the drill goes. You have to print the document, physically sign it and then scan it again as a PDF file in its signed form. Almost some users might not have an issue with this, I am fairly certain that most users would appreciate a quicker and easier way to do this. Obviously, people with no printer will doubly appreciate this. This guide will show you how to do this by using simple programs.

Adobe Reader

Although we will be using Adobe Reader in this guide, a lot of other PDF readers offer the same functions that  I will describe below. Of course, they will differ in the exact way the process goes but overall most popular PDF readers offer these functions, including Mac’s integrated PDF reader. Now that this is out of the way, it is time to show you what I am talking about.

Open the document that you want to sign. Sometimes the Reader will automatically retrieve the signing field and prompt you to complete it. Otherwise, look for the “Sign” option in the top right corner of the PDF and click on it. This will bring up some new options in the right side panel. This guide will show you how to add your real signature and not just text or initials so you will need to click on the “Place Signature” option. This will bring up a new window with 4 available options: typing your signature, using a webcam, drawing it or using an image. Typing a text will simply create a fake signature that will use a font that resembles signatures. Drawing the signature is indeed an option if you are very good at drawing with your mouse or if you are using a stylus.


However, most people will want one of the two other options. Using your webcam is simple. Just draw your signature on a piece of paper, choose that option and then put that piece of paper in front of your webcam. The program will automatically retrieve and display your signature. This method mostly works but in case you do not have a webcam or the method simply does not work for you, you can try to insert an image. Either scan your signature or take a photo of it and upload it to your computer. Then, click on that option, browse your computer for the signature and the program will paste it in the signature field. Be sure to use a clear image with a white background for this option. The last two options are two of the best as they will display your normal signature without hassle.

Hello Sign


Although there might be more apps out there for digital signatures, Hello Sign is the most widely recognized and loved app out there. It integrates itself with Gmail and you can directly sign documents much like you would with Adobe Reader but without even having to download them in your computer. Plus, the program can even save your signature securely and then use that to sign your documents when you want it to.