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Electronically sign a document

Electronic signatures are fast and easy with DocuSign eSignature

Electronic signatures, like our DocuSign eSignature solution, are a legal way to digitally secure approvals on a document, contract or set of documents. Electronic signatures can replace your handwritten signature to speed up virtually any paper-driven, manual signature processes.

What is an electronic signature?

An electronic signature, like those generated by DocuSign eSignature, is a symbol, or other data in digital format, that attaches to an electronic document and is adopted by the “signer” or recipient of the signature request. Most often, e-signatures appear as an image of a physical signature. Electronic signatures are created online and applied to online documents. Instead of physically signing with a pen, you receive a request via email for your signature. All the “signing” is done online.

Why use e-signatures?

Electronically signing documents saves time, reduces the need for paper-driven processes and offers you the flexibility to sign a document from almost anywhere, on most devices. DocuSign eSignature can help you:

  • Accelerate workflows
  • Execute transactions with trust
  • Eliminate manual signatures 

Eco-friendly DocuSign eSignature saves you an average of $36 per agreement by reducing hard costs —including paper, postage and printing.   

What can you use DocuSign eSignature for?

Use the world’s #1 electronic signature solution to sign:

  • Sales contracts
  • New hire documentation
  • Invoice processing
  • Purchase orders
  • Expense reporting
  • Vendor agreements
  • Internal compliance
  • NDAs Letters of intent

Try online signing for free.

Are digital signatures and electronic signatures the same?

The terms “digital signature” and “electronic signature” are often used interchangeably, but they’re actually different. Digital signatures are a type of electronic signature that provides an extra level of security. Both electronic signatures, like DocuSign eSignature, and digital signatures are legally binding.

Are electronic signatures legal? 

Yes. Electronic signatures are legally enforceable in most business and personal transactions in almost every country in the world. Learn more in this blog.
Electronic signatures can be used to sign documents of all shapes and sizes, including:

  • Offer letters
  • Sales contracts 
  • Permission slips 
  • Rental/lease agreements 
  • Liability waivers 
  • Financial documents

How do you use DocuSign eSignature to electronically sign a document or PDF?

  1. Sign up for the DocuSign eSignature free trial and log in.
  2. Select New > Sign a Document then upload the electronic document or pdf.
  3. Select Sign and then follow the steps to electronically sign your document or PDF.  

How do you create and send a document or pdf for someone else to electronically sign?

  1. Open the email with a request to digitally sign your document.
  2. Click the link. Your document should open in an electronic signature tool such as our DocuSign eSignature application.
  3. Agree to electronic signing. You may be asked to agree to sign. After confirming agreement and if the document was sent via DocuSign eSignature, you should see tags with instructions to Start or Sign.
  4. Click each sign tag and follow the instructions to add your electronic signature where required to sign or initial.
  5. Adopt a signature to save your signature information.
  6. Confirm your signature by clicking FINISH. A message appears indicating your are finished and the sender automatically receives your signed document.

Is signing documents electronically safe?

DocuSign protects your highly confidential information by encrypting and making every document tamper-evident. Authentication options help prove that signers are who they say they are at the time of signing, helping ensure your documents have non-repudiation in a court of law. With DocuSign, the security of your documents, electronic signature authentication, and system security are top priorities. Learn more in this blog.

Now that you have a better understanding of electronic signatures, sign up for our DocuSign eSignature free trial and try e-signing documents for yourself.