business email signatures best practices

Guidelines for email signatures:

  • Text only is predictable and consistent
  • Avoid logos, social media image-links, photographs, etc
  • Avoid HTML formatting—some recipients may only see text
  • Quotations are not necessary and may look unprofessional

Images, logos, social media links, etc may show up as attachments to the receiver. Email settings of the receiver will dictate the appearance of your email to them. Multiple attachments in emails may be viewed with suspicion by spam filters and security software.

Avoid adages and sayings in your signature—they are unnecessary. In our example, the sender admires Henry Ford as a brilliant captain of industry, but the recipient may see him as an tyrannical, union-busting antisemite.

One thing that this sender did correctly was to make the contact portions of the signature live text—it can be copied and pasted. They also used a web-safe typeface (Georgia). There is simply no guarantee that the recipient will see your message in the typeface you specified, but the chances are increased with web-safe fonts.