How to Digitally Sign a PDF Document: The Ultimate Guide

Did you know that getting a document signed in the traditional sense takes roughly five days, whereas getting a document signed digitally can take 37 minutes?

Not only does digitally signing documents save time, but they can also save businesses, clients, and customers a whole lot of money and hassle.

Keep reading to discover how to digitally sign a PDF and more useful electronic signature tricks and tips.

How to Digitally Sign a PDF

Signing a document online is similar to signing a document on paper, however, it saves you the time and hassle of having to print out and scan a document. However, there are two terms that might have you a little confused.

You can digitally sign a document either by using a digital signature or by using an electronic signature. The two terms have different meanings, so don’t get them mixed up.

A digital signature helps to verify a document’s authenticity because they use encrypted information. This process is a little more difficult, but it does mean that your document is cryptographically secure. Certificate Authority, a third party, serves as the notary in the verification process of your identity.

An electronic signature is an image or text of your handwritten signature. This can be added to a PDF document with ease, but it doesn’t offer the same amount of authorization as a digital signature. Electronic signatures can be done by adding some text or an image of your signature to a document.

How Do You Create a Digital Signature and How Do You Create an Electronic Signature?

It’s an easy and quick process whether you choose to add a digital signature or an electronic signature!. Have a look at how you can add a signature and follow our guides:

1. Add a Digital Signature to Your PDF Document

The first thing you need to do is select the ‘Protect tab’, which can be found in your PDF document under the ‘Certify Document’ group. Click on ‘Sign’ and then choose your signature from the gallery.

Select the page where you want to place your signature and then save the document with your signature attached. You may also need to click on the digital signature to confirm the details.

If your signature isn’t already in the gallery then you need to create one. To do this, you can click on ‘My Digital IDs’ in the ‘Identification’ group. Select ‘New’ and enter your identity information.

Find the ‘Intended Usage’ list and choose the type of security you want to use, then select ‘Next’. To give your digital ID a filename, you can select ‘Browse’ and find an appropriate place to save it. Finally, enter your password and press ‘OK’. Now you should have your own digital signature.

2. Add an Electronic Signature to Your PDF Document

Most people only expect you to sign a document using an electronic signature. But be sure to check before you go ahead and sign a document, as this will save you time.

If you’re wondering how to create an electronic signature, all you have to do is open up the PDF document that needs signing using Adobe Acrobat Reader.

Then click on ‘Fill & Sign’ which can be found in the tools section to the right-hand side of your screen. When you’ve chosen this, a toolbar should appear at the top of your document.

Press ‘Sign’ and then choose ‘Add Signature’. You’ll then be presented with three options, you can either type, draw, or add an image.

The type option allows you to type in your name and adjust the style of the signature however you please.

The draw option allows you to draw your own signature, as you would on a paper document. You can do this using your mouse, touchpad or finger depending on what device you’re using.

And the image option allows you to choose an image file of your signature if you already have this on your device.

Once you’re happy with your signature, you can then press ‘Apply’. After this, you can then drag, resize and position your signature in your PDF document however you choose. For example, you might need to make your signature a little smaller to fit into the dotted line on the document where you need to sign.

Alternatively, there are several services that provide an electronic signature option. These are particularly useful for businesses who need to sign documents with ease and haste but don’t always use PDF documents.

What Are the Advantages of Signing Documents Digitally?

There are several benefits of signing documents digitally, either using a digital signature or an electronic signature.

For example, both provide a quick option for signing documents. This is particularly useful for businesses that partake in international dealings because sometimes you can’t always get your customers, clients, or employees to sign a document by hand due to their location.

Another benefit of signing documents digitally is that it can save money on having to print off and scan a document, or print off and post a document. Digitally signing documents also reduces the hassle of having to sign a piece of paper by hand.

After you’ve got your signature saved, you can also use it time and time again. So whether you need the extra security of digital signatures or want a quick electronic signature, you can sign numerous documents once you’ve set it up.

Follow Our Ultimate Guide on How to Digitally Sign a PDF

Whether you need to sign a document over the internet because you’re a business owner or because you’re signing an agreement, such as an apartment agreement, follow our guide on how to digitally sign a PDF.

If you aren’t sure whether to use an electronic signature or a digital signature, ask the person who wants the document which one they would prefer.

If you found this article insightful and helpful, then make sure you check out some of our other articles too.

About RJ Frometa

Head Honcho, Editor in Chief and writer here on VENTS. I don't like walking on the beach, but I love playing the guitar and geeking out about music. I am also a movie maniac and 6 hours sleeper.

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