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What to Include in an Email Signature: Best Practices

Strengthen Your Email’s Weakest Link

If you don’t think about what to put in an email signature, you’re wasting a golden opportunity. 

Your email signature is some of the most valuable real estate in your emails, and once you create it, you don’t have to repeat the task. 

Don’t miss out on this easy, overlooked strategy. Here are some of the best practices on what to include in your email signature. 

What Should I Put in My Email Signature?

What to Include in an Email Signature: Best Practices

When you are deciding what to put in your email signature, start with the purpose of your signature. Here are a few of the things an email signature can do for you:

  • Get an important point across

  • Provide necessary information

  • Build your brand

  • Prompt valuable action

There are important elements that should automatically appear at the bottom of your email, such as an unsubscribe button, that we’re not going to address in this article. 

These items are best handled by an email service provider, which is why it's so important to choose an email platform that’s right for you. 

Why Trust Us? All beehiiv writers are carefully vetted for their knowledge and experience. Jacob Bear is a freelance writer who uses three separate email signatures for different occasions. He was recently named a Top Copywriting Voice by LinkedIn

What Makes a Professional Email Signature?

If you’re signing off as an individual professional, such as a lawyer, broker, or coach, your email signature will probably need to contain some required legal jargon.

But what can you include in addition to this?

Most people waste the opportunity by limiting their email signature to their name, job title, and work phone or other contact info. 

Some of the better signatures may also include links to social media and a headshot. 

What to Include in an Email Signature: Best Practices

All of these things are important, but there are at least three uses for your email signature that most people don't think about.  

First, you can include a brief statement about what you do and who it’s for, such as, “Showing restaurant owners how to double your profits in six months.”

Second, if you’ve earned some recognition or have a special achievement under your belt, you could add a few words to brag about it. For example, “Voted Top Game Designer in 2021.”

Finally, you could include a call to action. Offer a link to download a lead magnet, schedule an appointment, or subscribe.

If your email signature is going on a newsletter, you’ll probably add some branding and maybe a logo. But why not add a short request for feedback like this one from The Neuron:

What to Include in an Email Signature: Best Practices

You shouldn’t include quotes in your email signature (we’ll get to that in a minute), but there’s one exception. 

If you have a quote from a client or customer that is short, punchy, and specific, you may consider adding this testimonial to your email signature.

But that’s a slippery slope, and here’s why.

What Should Be Avoided in an Email Signature?

One of the worst things you can do is ruin an otherwise excellent email with objects that take a long time to load.

What to Include in an Email Signature: Best Practices

This is why you should avoid gifs and videos in your signature.

In addition, don’t put anything in your email signature that doesn't need to be there all the time. The whole point of creating a signature is so it's always there and you won’t have to go in and change it very often.

Also, you’ve got to cram a lot of functionality into a tiny amount of space, so don't fill it up with anything superfluous. 

Avoid quotes, no matter how cute or inspiring, unless they’re testimonials and every word is solid gold.

Another big blunder is to have a signature consisting entirely of an image. Images don't always load in email, and if you use an image by itself, readers might not see your signature. Your contact information and your call to action will disappear.

A client of mine once made this mistake and wasted weeks trying to figure out why their emails were getting zero response.

If your signature is just an image, you don’t have a way of including multiple links. 

You can certainly use an image as a part of your signature, but as you consider what to put in an email signature, any important text should be real, actual text.

Should I Include My Email Address in My Email Signature?

Email addresses always end up in the “what to include in email signature” questions, but this should be a no-brainer.

If your main email address is the same as the address you’re sending from, then it doesn't make sense to have it in your signature. Readers can just hit “Reply” if they want to reach you.

It’s more important to think about whether you want readers to contact you directly by email. 

If you’re a coach, freelancer, or other professional who deals with clients one-on-one, it’s useful to give readers a clear way to contact you. 

You may choose to have them contact you by email, but you could also provide a phone number, a contact form, or a link to your scheduling software.

If you have a newsletter with thousands of subscribers, the situation is different. If you provide your email, you could soon spend your entire day answering readers’ emails—or risk losing readers when you fail to respond. 

The Easiest Solution to the “What to Include In Email Signature” Problem

Think of your email signature as a part of the design of your email newsletter. Consider it a big piece of your reader’s overall experience.

When you look at the issue this way, you’ll see that you can avoid stress by focusing on the big picture.

This is where beehiiv can help you. Your emails are completely customizable using our no-code editor. The editor even warns you about Gmail clipping. Setting up an email signature becomes just another easy task.

Every beehiiv email newsletter comes with its own SEO-optimized website and several systems to help you grow your audience through referrals, recommendations, and boosts. 

We’re constantly adding new tools, and we focus on features that are easy to use and genuinely useful. beehiiv was started and run by creators. We get it.

While you’re thinking about what to include in your email signature, why not include the one thing that will be a game changer? Start a beehiiv newsletter.

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