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Home / Blog / How to Electronically Sign a PDF Within Clicks [Online & Desktop]

How to Electronically Sign a PDF Within Clicks [Online & Desktop]

By Roche | Follow twitter | Updated on March 3, 2023 | Deutsch
The traditional PDF signing process is time-consuming and inefficient, and sometimes a simple mistake will result in re-signing the document. As a consequence, there’s a faster and easier PDF document signing process: e-sign a PDF. A new question emerges: how do I electronically sign a PDF?

The established signing process is quite torturous and inefficient. That's why we have made the switch to electronic signatures. Don't have any clue about how to add e-signatures to your PDF documents? Never mind, this post will explain how to electronically sign a PDF.

What Is an Electronic Signature?

An electronic signature, also known as an e-signature, is an image of your signature embedded on the top layer of a PDF document. As an electronic form of the traditional wet-ink signature, it was originally created to provide secure authentication of a digital file with a recognizable mark.

The PDF document signing process is identical to the conventional approach. With e-signatures, we can save a lot of time and substantially enhance working efficiency. 

How to Electronically Sign a PDF on Windows

This section provides corresponding solutions to sign a PDF document on Windows 11, 10, 8, and 7.

SwifDoo PDF

While SwifDoo PDF is not the biggest name in this industry, its lightweight and easy-to-use features have earned it millions of active users globally. To electronically sign a document with an e-signature, follow the steps below:

Step 1: Launch SwifDoo PDF and open a PDF within the software;

Step 2: Click the Protect button on the menu bar and choose Signature;

How to e-sign a PDF in SwifDoo PDF

Step 3: Choose Create New Signature to add an e-signature to the PDF.

How to electronically sign a PDF in SwifDoo PDF

Once you have obtained a signature, you need to upload it to the clipboard. Click the “OK” button to finalize the uploading process. The next step is to position your e-signature where you need it. Don’t forget to save the changes made to the current document.  

As the screenshot shows, SwifDoo PDF offers three ways to electronically sign a PDF document:

By images: upload your existing handwritten signature as an image to use as an e-signature in your PDF document. Check the “Black and White” box to change the color of the signature image.

By inputting: type your name within the field as a valid e-signature. Change the signature font if you need to.

By handwriting: handwrite your name using the mouse. Optionally, you can connect a touchpad or writing pad to the computer and write your signature on it. Change the font size if you need.

When you’ve finished signing a PDF document, you may need to make further edits. And if in some cases, you are required to edit a signed PDF, then this post is of great interest to you.

How to Edit A Signed PDF [Quick Answers]

How to Edit A Signed PDF [Quick Answers]

Do you want to know the method to edit PDFs with signatures? Join the discussion below to see how to edit a signed PDF online and offline.


How to Electronically Sign a PDF on Mac

From another perspective, Mac users are lucky enough. That’s because PDF document signing is made much easier with a built-in Preview application. To sign a PDF document electronically, you can utilize your trackpad, the built-in camera on Mac, an iPhone, or iPad. Follow the instructions to learn how to e-sign a PDF on Mac:

Using trackpad

Step 1. Click Trackpad;

Step 2. Click the text as instructed;

Step 3. Sign your name on the trackpad using your hand;

How to electronically sign a PDF using trackpad on Mac

Step 4. Tap the Done button to sign this PDF document.

Tip: If your Mac has been equipped with a Force Touch trackpad, you can optionally press your finger firmly on the pad to create a heavier and darker signature

Using a built-in camera

Write your signature on a piece of paper. Hold the paper to face the camera. Please make sure your signature is within the box in the window. When your signature shows up in the window, click “Done” to finish the process;

Using iPhone or iPad

Click iPhone and iPad. Sign your name with your finger or Apple Pencil on the screen. Hit the “Done” button when you see the signature within the window.

After you have already created your signature, open the PDF document in the Preview app on your Mac if the “Markup” toolbar isn’t showing, click the “Show Markup Toolbar” button, then click the Sign button.

How to electronically sign a PDF using iPhone or iPad on Mac

The PDF document signing process is relatively easy with the native PDF signer: choose the signature you want to add, drag it to where it needs, and then use the handle to adjust its size.

How to Digitally Sign a PDF in 3 Easy Ways

How to Digitally Sign a PDF in 3 Easy Ways

Are you troubled by not knowing how to digitally sign a PDF? This post explains to you 3 easy ways to digitally sign or add digital signatures to PDFs.


How to Electronically Sign a PDF Online

If you find it troublesome to download a desktop PDF application, there are other PDF tool options available online to help with PDF document signing, such as iLovePDF and DigiSigner. If your need is to sign online documents, or more precisely, PDF documents, then these two PDF tools help you e-sign a PDF:


If you're a regular PDF user, the name iLovePDF won't be a stranger to you. This is a prevalent online PDF program, with the ability to edit, annotate, and sign a PDF document readily. For those who'd like to sign online PDFs, this presents a good option:

Step 1: Navigate to the official website, and click on the ALL PDF TOOLS;

How to electronically sign a PDF online in iLovePDF

Step 2: Choose Sign PDF under the PDF SECURITY option;

Step 3: Upload a PDF document via Google Drive, Dropbox, or local folders. After uploading the file, you are allowed to customize your signature by changing color and font;

Step 4: When you finish designing your signature, click Apply to add the signature to the place you want.

The whole process of e-signing an online PDF document only requires several minutes, but this platform only allows you to make ANY changes to a document or process two tasks twice a day.

Tips: iLovePDF provides two different signatures: a simple signature and a digital signature. A simple signature is indeed an electronic signature. While the latter, a digital signature, actually differs from an electronic signature. However, for a non-paid user, you only have two free tasks per day.


Our next way out is a professional PDF signer-DigiSigner. It can help sign a PDF and create an electronic signature as well. In addition, you can also create electronic signatures in Word and Excel files, and scanned documents in PNG and JPEG format, as well as TXT and RTF files. If needed, you can request e-signatures from others. Check out how to sign a document online:

Step 1: Enter the URL on the search bar and click to upload a PDF;

How to electronically sign a PDF in DigiSigner

Step 2: Create an electronic signature by handwriting, uploading, or typing;

How to e-sign a PDF online

Step 3: When finished, just add this signature to any place you need. Hit the Sign button then and download the signed PDF.

DigiSigner is not only a good free PDF signer, but it also enables users to add a signed date as well as a checkmark to the PDF page. The only drawback is that this platform only allows users to sign a document in PDF three times a month. Once you’re in need of more opportunities, you can only upgrade the plan. Anyway, it is worth a shot. 


Whatever software you choose to electronically sign a PDF with, the ultimate purpose is to simplify traditional PDF document signing workflow and improve efficiency, and that’s why we embrace electronic signatures. Hopefully, when you read here, you already found answers about how to e-sign a PDF. 


Q:Is it legal to sign documents electronically?

Digitally signed PDF documents enjoy the same legal bindingness as those with traditional wet signatures. Legislation such as the E-SIGN ACT and UETA Act provides legal protections for e-signature.

Q:How do I electronically sign a PDF with Adobe Reader?

Adobe Reader allows you to sign PDFs and add the signature to the file.
  1. Open a PDF document and click the Sign button;
  2. Click Fill and sign when the panel is displayed;
  3. Move your cursor over an automatically detected form field;
  4. Select Sign and choose Add Signature or Add Initials.

Adobe Reader has three methods to help you add an e-signature to a PDF: type your name in the field; draw your signature into the field; upload an image of your signature.

Q:Is it legal to copy and paste the signature of others?

A copy or pasted e-signature is NOT a legally valid substitute for the original handwritten signature. In certain cases, this would be a fraudulent signature and would be considered a criminal offense.

Q:How do I electronically sign a password-protected PDF?

If you don't know the password for a protected PDF document that needs an e-signature, there are usually two feasible methods:

Method 1: Remove the password with the help of free professional password removal software, such as SysTools PDF Unlocker and PDF Password Remover Tool;

Method 2: Electronically sign on the protected PDF with programs like SignEasy. Once you download and install the software, launch the program and open a password-protected PDF, and directly sign your name on this document.

With 2 years of experience writing reviews and roundup articles in the document management and software industries. Always have a passion for trying new things, especially software.

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