As digital documents become more prevalent in a paperless office, electronic signatures are no stranger to us because of the portability and security. This new trend has greatly enhanced efficiency and streamlined workflow.

If you ever thought of creating your own electronic signature and adding it to a Word or PDF file, this post will cover all your needs by  explaining how to make an e-signature and insert it into PDFs.  

SwifDoo PDF

SwifDoo PDF comes as a versatile PDF program with a wide array of useful features, including creating e-signatures and adding the personal marks to a PDF document. If you need a reliable PDF creator and signer on Windows 10, 8 and 7, SwifDoo PDF may work for you.

SwifDoo PDF now supports  making a new electronic signature by typing, handwriting, or uploading an image of an existing signature (.jpg, .png, .tif, and .bmp). Let’s dive into how to create an electronic signature and sign a PDF document with SwifDoo PDF:

Step 1: Download and install SwifDoo PDF from the official website or Microsoft AppSource;

Step 2: Launch the program and upload a PDF document;swifdoo-sign-pdf

Step 3: Once the PDF is opened, click Advanced > Signature to make an electronic signature using the three methods we introduced above;

Step 4: Select OK to insert this newly created e-signature into the PDF.

                                                                    Free Download

Note:SwifDoo PDF is a Windows-based electronic signature creator and signer. It does not allow users to add digital signatures to PDFs, however.

Foxit PDF

When it comes to the document management industry, Foxit PDF is a feature-rich program that cannot be ignored. As for electronic signatures, Foxit PDF is much more helpful than the previously mentioned SwifDoo PDF as it provides more features to e-sign a PDF document, such as allowing digital signatures and certificate signatures.

Here are  guides to add an electronic and digital signature to a PDF document respectively: 

How to electronically sign a PDF

Step 1: Open a PDF file with Foxit PDF;

Step 2: Click Protect > Fill & Sign and then press the + button to create a new electronic signature. Foxit PDF enables users to draw a signature, import from files, and more;


Step 3: After you create an electronic signature, click Save to apply and insert this signature into the PDF.

With Foxit PDF, users can add this e-signature to multiple pages by right clicking on the signature and choosing “Place on Multiple Pages”. This saves time  when a PDF has many signature fields to fill in.

How to digitally sign a PDF 

Since digital signatures enjoy higher confidentiality and security, the process of adding a digital signature to a PDF is more difficult:

Step 1: Click Protect > Sign & Certify > Place Signature;


Step 2: Draw an area on the PDF and start creating a digital signature;

Step 3: Fill in the information as needed. When ready, click Sign to add this digital signature to the PDF.

Foxit PDF lets users add a date and location to fillable PDFs. Aside from that, users can also add a signature box, block, or line to the page. To reach a wider audience, it is now compatible with macOS, Windows, iPhone, and Android. If you need to add an electronic signature or digital one to your PDFs, Foxit PDF may be a good option.

Tips:If you want more similar recommendations, Kofax Power PDF, Wondershare PDFelement, and Adobe Acrobat are professional signature programs that are worth a shot.


Signaturely is a dedicated Internet-based signature maker which strives to make the signing process super simple. If you don’t already have your signature electronically, try this tool to create a cool signature by typing your name, drawing (handwritten signature), or uploading an image without any difficulty.


On top of being an online e-signature creator, Signaturely is a team collaboration platform which is able to create a signature box and block so that users can choose to whom to send this document.

Users only need to import a Word or PDF document into the platform and hit the “Send” button and the file that needs an e-signature will directly go to the signer’s mailbox.  

As a collaborative platform, Signaturely can grant admin- or member-level access for your teammates. If someone has signed the document or forgets to e-sign a document, Signaturely will push notifications.

For users who may need contract templates, this platform provides different types of free contracts, such as SEO proposals, payment agreements, and intellectual property agreements.


Since most PDF signature creators are desktop programs, here we’d like to introduce an online application to help create and insert e-signatures into PDFs: pdfFiller. pdfFiller is actually a comprehensive PDF-related service provider, which enables users to convert & compress, split & merge, view & edit, and sign & protect PDFs.

As an online PDF signer, pdfFiller provides multiple options to create a new e-signature: type a signature (full name or initials), draw a signature, import an image of your signature from a local device, capture a signature, or add signature via QR code. Users can choose the method that works best for them.

Let’s take a closer look at how to e-sign a fillable PDF online with the support of pdfFiller:

Step 1: Enter the URL on the search bar, and then upload a PDF document from your device or other cloud storage platform (Dropbox, Box, OneDrive, Google Drive,);


Step 2: When the PDF has loaded, click Sign to process. If you already have a personal e-signature, just upload the image. Otherwise, create a new one as described above;

Step 3: Choose the electronic signature and insert it anywhere you need. If you need to add a date to the signature, choose Date and that’s all.

If you need additional information about how to electronically sign a PDF, this post from SwifDoo PDF Blog is a supplement to this article.

PDF Signature Remover: Approaches to Delete E-signature from PDF

PDF Signature Remover: Approaches to Delete E-signature from PDF

PDF signatures can well protect PDFs from being modified or changed. But sometimes we need to delete these marks. See how to erase signatures from PDFs.


In Closing

Indeed, electronic signatures are  more convenient while remaining  legally binding, so there is no wonder why this form of signature has risen in popularity among businesses.

Desktop PDF programs enable users to add digital signatures of higher security to documents while most online platforms can only apply electronic signatures to PDFs. However, the biggest strength of web-based tools is that users don’t need any third-party software to perform such tasks.

Common FAQ about 4 Best Free PDF Signature Creators and Signers in 2021

Q:Why can't I add new signatures to my PDF?

This issue can be caused by many different reasons. The most common one is a bug. The most straightforward method is to contact the support staff and provide relevant screenshots: your software version and operating system. If it's convenient for you, you can check if you have authorized the program to edit the PDF by right clicking on the PDF and choosing Properties > Security.

Q:How can I  add an e-signature to an email in Gmail?

Creating a Gmail signature is not complicated as long as you have a well-designed personal signature already:

Step 1: Launch Gmail and look for the Settings icon in the top right corner (shown as  a gear);

Step 2: Choose See All Settings and navigate to Signature;

Step 3: Select Create New to upload an image or type a signature.

When you finish the settings, your signature will be appended at the end of all messages.

Q:What are the main differences between a digital signature and an electronic signature?

A digital signature is used to secure and protect a document, and  can provide evidence of the origin, identity, and status of e-documents. It is based on public key or cryptography. However, an electronic signature is for verifying a file and used as a replacement for a traditional ink signature.

Relatively speaking, a digital signature enjoys enhanced security and usually creates more data within the signature.


Roche has been an active PDF user for 6 years and tried different types of professional PDF tools (both online and desktop version) since at his bachelor degree. Now, Roche works as a columnist for SwifDoo PDF over the course of the last one year, and provides useful and practical solutions pertaining to various PDF topics for users from different features.