How much time do you waste signing documents? You format and print off a document, sign it, scan it into your computer, and (usually) reformat it again before sending.
As a one-off, this doesn't sound too bad. However, repeated dozens and dozens of times, it becomes a chore.
That's where electronic signatures come to the rescue — they let you sign documents in seconds.
And companies are quickly realizing the benefits. The number of worldwide eSignature transactions jumped from 89 million in 2012 to 754 million in 2017. That's a lot of contracts.
So, how can you get started? Here are the 100 best eSignature solutions you can use. But let's clarify a few things, first.
What is an electronic signature?
An electronic signature is a digital mark indicating agreement to a contract or document. For example, when you sign your name on a courier's mobile device — that's an electronic signature.
eSignature software makes it easy to collect and store these kinds of signatures, usually by enabling you to put entry forms in your documents. They also add an extra level of security by ensuring signatures can be verified.
But what about digital signatures? Are the terms interchangeable?
A digital signature is not the same as an electronic signature. It's an encrypted "packet" associated with a document.
Digital signature software will create a condensed version of a document — called a hash — which will be encrypted using a key in a signatory certificate. This encrypted "hash" is the signature. To validate the signature, the hash is decrypted with the signatory's key and compared the original document.
Many of the solutions below offer features for both electronic and digital signatures, so you don't have to pick between the two.
Are Electronic Signatures Legally Binding?
In a word, yes.
There are many cases in which judges have ruled in favor of the veracity of eSignatures. Whenever there's consent and intent, which is almost always the case, eSignatures are legally binding.
Trusted software providers also add an additional level of security by providing authentication and audit logs, among other features.
Best Electronic Signature Apps
- OneSpan Sign
- KeepSolid Sign
- Formstack Sign
Award-winning online software PandaDoc is known for its streamlined user interface and ease-of-use. Its eSignature solution is offered as part of a larger document management tool that includes drag-and-drop form integration, automated workflows, and full audit histories. A number of integrations are also available, including CRM, payment, and file storage apps.
If you're looking for a comprehensive solution for the management of contracts and documents, all with a built-in eSignature feature, PandaDoc is worth considering.
Price: The professional plan costs $19.99/month per user. Business plans, which include automation, payment collection, and CRM integrations, start at $39.99/month per user. All options include a 14-day free trial.
HelloSign brings a unique angle to the market by focusing on customization, customer service, and the web's first entirely free eSignature plan. Their business plans are also among the best-priced on the market.
HelloSign's powerful API allows you to embed and fully brand signing options into your documents. The company is also compliant with all major worldwide eSignature laws and offers an array of extensions.
Pro tip: HelloSign's eSignature software is built into HubSpot's Sales Hub Free.
Price: Free plan for up to three documents a month. Pro plan is $13/month and includes five senders. The business plan is $40/month and allows for up to five senders. Enterprise plans are available. All plans come with a 30-day free trial.
With over 200,000 users, DocuSign is, hands-down, the most popular eSignature solution on the market. The software is intuitive and easy-to-use and integrates with a wide range of third-party tools. A suite of APIs even allows for custom integrations with your current systems. If integration is at the forefront of your mind, this is the solution to go with.
DocuSign also places a strong emphasis on security, both for the storage of data and the eSignature process and has many high-level security certifications in both Europe and the US.
Price: The standard plan is $25/month per user. More advanced plans, which include payment collection and bulk send, begin at $40/month per user. All come with a 30-day free trial.
4. Adobe Sign
Adobe was one of the first software companies to enter the e-signature space, and they are still a huge player. The feature-rich platform gives you the power to manage signing workflows from any location with any device.
Adobe Sign is notable for the breadth of integrations with third-party tools (Microsoft, Salesforce, Workday, and more) and its emphasis on global compliance. Adobe sign offers features for both electronic and digital signatures.
Price: The small business plan is $24.99/month per user. Business and enterprise plans, with more exhaustive features, begin at $39.99/month per user. A 14-day free trial is included.
Mobile app: none, web-based only
Docsketch offers a generous free plan that includes document tracking, reminders, and flexible document workflows.
The tool also includes a way to customize the experience for recipients depending on the type of document they're signing.
Sales documents can have approval options, while other legal agreements are presented through a helpful guided signing experience. Every document signed with Docsketch receives an audit report that meets or exceeds U.S. and international e-signature law requirements.
Price: Docsketch has a free forever plan that includes three documents a month, one template, document reminders, and more. The Pro plan is $15/month per user and includes unlimited documents, unlimited templates, branding options, and advanced preferences.
6. OneSpan Sign
OneSpan Sign (formerly eSignLive) positions itself as the eSignature software of choice for large enterprises with a need for strong security features. The company has an enviable client list, which includes BMW and IBM.
One intriguing selling point is the option for businesses to use the software on their premises or as part of a cloud-based service. Many integrations and APIs are offered, and the software is both mobile and desktop compatible.
Despite its positioning for larger enterprises,OneSpan Sign is undoubtedly for small businesses, and its mobile apps are particularly easy-to-use.
Price: Only two plans are available, the "Professional" plan and the "Enterprise" plan. Contact OneSpan sign for pricing.
SignNow has garnered numerous awards for its simple, mobile-friendly software. It's a reliable option for small businesses because of the straightforward interface, the extent of its integrations (including a custom API), and its focused set of features.
SignNow's main USP, however, is its price. At $5/month per user for unlimited document sending and templates, it's easily the best-priced option on this list. The more feature-rich "Business Premium" plan comes in at only $15/month per user.
SignNow's apps for Android and iOS are used by over 40% of Fortune 1000 companies, for good reason. If you're intending to use eSignature software on your phone, you won't find a better solution.
Price: The entry-level plan is $8/user/month. Full-feature plans come in for $15/user/month. Enterprise plans are available starting at $30/user/month.
SignEasy differentiates itself by offering a minimal user interface intended to be easy to use (as you can guess from the name).
Their tools allow you to create documents from within the platform or integrate drag-and-drop functionality with a variety of third-party tools. Other features allow for self-signing, in-person, and remote signing.
Price: Standard plan with document signing (no in-person signing) is $15/month. Plus plan for small business is $20/month. Premium plan for up to three users is $75/month, and $25/month for each additional user.
RightSignature is Citrix's contribution to the eSignature space, and the biggest benefit is the speed in which documents can be sent to clients. RightSignature's apps and desktop solutions enable users to upload, format, and send documents in only a few clicks. A suite of integrations and an API are also offered.
Price: The personal plan is $12/month for one user. The "most popular" business plan is $60/month and allows up to three people. Additional plans start at $90/month.
10. KeepSolid Sign
KeepSolid specializes in security. As such, its eSignature software has an emphasis on secure storage of data and the legal verifiability of signatures.
KeepSolid Sign has all the features you would expect, including mobile-compatibility, drag-and-drop forms, and a host of integrations. You can also take advantage of the workspaces.
Price: $34.99/month per 5-person team. Enterprise plans and annual subscriptions are available. All options have a 14-day free trial.
Next up on our list is Signable. It's the only software used on a pay-as-you-go basis (along with monthly options). The company caters mainly to the U.K. and European market, making it uniquely placed to keep up-to-date with E.U. law. Signable boasts many high-profile European clients.
If you're looking for simple eSignature software with access to U.K. support and the flexibility of a pay-as-you-go model, Signable is the one for you.
Price: Pay-as-you-go costs £1 per document. Small business plan (for up to 50 documents) costs £21/month. Corporate plan (for up to 750 documents) costs £199/month.
GetAccept allows you to integrate with CRM tools (like HubSpot) to make record-keeping absolutely seamless when your sales reps are building and closing deals. The Starter version allows you to pay month-to-month, and if you decide to upgrade to the Pro version, it lets you send documents through your own email client.
Price: Starts at $25-60/user/month; custom quotes available for API
Mobile app: None, web-based
Fill in and sign online and PDF forms with digital signatures, customize workflows and attach files to email invitations, and even enable a Notary Public to notarize your documents remotely. Plus, SecuredSigning's CrimTrac App allows you to run background checks online and paperless.
Price: First three documents/month are free for one user; Additional pricing available upon request
Mobile app: None, web-based
Create and collaborate on from-scratch contracts using Contractbook's free templates, and enjoy the ease of legally binding digital signatures. And store all your documents in the cloud so everything is organized and GDPR-friendly.
Mobile app: None, web-based
Lightico is a second generation web-based eSignature solution that focuses on high volume B2C transactions. Their eSignature solution is part of a wider customer experience platform that converts documents into smart eforms, and helps with tasks such as ID verification and payment collection.
Lightico can easily connect to your CRM, call center agent toolbars, websites, and live chat as well as other business tools so you can start collaborating seamlessly with your customers right away.
Price: Contact Lightico for a custom package.
16. Formstack Sign
Formstack provides a flexible electronic software solution that can be used by teams across industries. When you upload a document to Formstack along with the signer’s contact information, they will be notified by text or email of the signature request allowing them to sign from anywhere.
This software has notable features such as unlimited eSignatures, document uploads, and templates for use.
Price: Starts at $15.95 per user per month; custom quotes available for enterprise
Mobile app: None, web-based
For those who need signatures in a pinch, SignRequest offers free document uploading and electronic signatures through their easy-to-use platform. SignRequest also has an API that can integrate directly with your CRM to store all of your contact and signature data in one place.
Price: Free plan offers 10 documents per month for one user; paid plans start at $7/month for one user sending unlimited documents
Mobile app: None, web-based
In addition to managing eSignatures, eversign offers a robust document management solution. Sending documents off for signature is a simple, straightforward process. Other notable features include secure document storage, document editor, the ability to manage documents for multiple businesses, and custom templates.
The contact management feature is especially helpful for organizations that are not ready to implement a full CRM solution but want to maintain contact records for document signers.
Price: Free plan offers 5 documents per month; paid plans start at $9.99/month for unlimited documents
Mobile app: None, web-based
SnapSign offers an intuitive, user-friendly interface for collecting eSignatures. The platform is US ESIGN and UETA compliant, making documents legally binding. This tool also has pre-built integrations so you can quickly, easily incorporate signature collection in your current workflow.
SnapSign also has a robust template library for common forms such as Non-Disclosure Agreements (NDAs), sales contracts, and more.
Price: Plans starting at $9.99/user/month; custom quotes available for enterprise
Ditch Paper Signatures for the Faster Alternative
Many people are reluctant to transition from physical signatures to electronic signatures. There's something inherently satisfying about squiggling that mark at the bottom of a page. But there's an important point to make, beyond the time both you and your team will save.
There are also many positive benefits for your customers. Making it easy for them to quickly sign contracts, coupled with your ability to track activity and send reminders, will often directly impact your bottom-line for the better. Something as simple as offering the option to use eSignature can lead to more customers, fewer mistakes, and more secure agreements.
That's difficult to argue against — satisfying squiggle or not.
To learn more, read our list of sales apps that every rep needs on their phone.
Originally published Jul 22, 2020 1:30:00 PM, updated July 22 2020