Tech – for Everyone

Tech Tips and Tricks & Advice – written in plain English.

Add A Signature To Your E-mails

Due to my schedule, I must repost for today’s article. This is one of my early (circa 2007) How To’s…

Tip of the day: A quick and easy tip today: personalize your email with a pre-configured signature, and cut down on your repetitive typing. Every email client, and online email account, allows you to create a “signature” which is automatically added to the bottom of every email you send.
I use mine to invite people to visit my websites and it includes clickable links. You may want to provide a phone number or other contact information. Some accounts may allow you to include a (v. small) logo or graphic. Or you can simply enter your name, and save yourself having to type it all the time.

I will demonstrate the steps of creating a signature in Hotmail, and the same methods can be used for other online mailboxes like Gmail, Yahoo Mail, and the one that comes from your Internet provider (Cox, Comcast, Earthlink, etc.) — and in Outlook and Thunderbird. I will start with Hotmail:

htmlopts.jpg The place to start, always, is under the Options menu (sometimes “options” is called “Preferences” or “Settings” –  those are interchangeable words in the world of computing menus). This is found in the upper right.
htmlopts2.jpgIn Hotmail, the choice you want is under “Customize your mail” and is named “Personal e-mail signature”. Other mailbox providers may simply label this “Signature”. Click on this choice, whatever it’s named.

The image below shows what I have entered as my Hotmail signature. As you can see, you enter your text here much the same as you do elsewhere in Hotmail, and you have the same toolbar for text options. To make any link you include “clickable” (should you wish), be sure to include the “http://”.
htmlsig.jpg
When you have your signature the way you like it, hit the “Save” button. While it is true that your signature will be largely ignored by your recipients, it is advisable to keep it short, simple, and professional.

In Outlook, the place to look is under the Tools menu. Click “Options”, and then click on the Mail Format tab, as shown below.

outlookopts.jpg

Click on the “Signatures” button, which is down towards the very bottom.

outsig.jpg
Because this tool is ‘plain text’, and doesn’t have font controls and such, I create my signature in Word, and Copy>Paste it into this window. (I used this same trick in Thunderbird.)

The method to attach a signature in Thunderbird is a little different. Again you start on the Tools menu, but instead of going straight to Options, select the choice right above that; Account Settings.
tbirdsig.jpg
Although this appears to be a very small and “featureless” window, you can in fact create a signature as complex as the one shown in the Hotmail image.

Signatures save you time, can advertise your business, and take only a minute to set up (or, change/update).

Today’s free download: I cannot, right at the moment, recall if I have already posted the free email client Thunderbird as a link.. I think I have but, just in case, here it is again– it’s good enough (especially at spam filtering) for a double posting.

Copyright 2007-9 © Tech Paul. All rights reserved.jaanix post to jaanix

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September 12, 2009 - Posted by | advice, computers, e-mail, how to | , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

4 Comments »

  1. Interesting post – Add sig. to emails.

    Just yesterday I took a look at the same,I could not decide if i wanted my signature on everything. I guess it depends on the intention of the email. Yes, it does save time and typing.

    Paul, you mention Thunderbird, I looked at it, is it superior/much different to Outlook Express(the only one I’ve used)
    what about Firefox?
    g.

    Like

    Comment by Gaia | September 13, 2009 | Reply

    • Gaia,
      Adding a set signature to all outgoing messages is a personal choice. I have found it is mostly used for professional/business reasons.. and by people with really long names.

      Now, to your questions: e-mail clients are simply tools for accessing a mail server. Web browsers are simply tools for, well, surfing the Internet.

      No, there is nothing really super-duper about Thunderbird that makes it “superior” to Outlook Express (how “super” can opening an e-mail be?), however it is a non-Microsoft alternative.. and some people want that choice. Also, it is more comparable to Outlook than Outlook Express (and Thunderbird is free, Outlook isn’t).

      Now.. some of the same things are true with Firefox. It is a non-Microsoft alternative. It used to be “safer” because cybercriminals didn’t target it as much as they did IE 6, but that’s no longer so much the case. Enough people are now using Firefox that it’s a target too (as are pretty much all browsers).
      Now the main reason to use Firefox is (IMHO) the thousands of Firefox add-ons (aka “plug-ins”) you can install to customize your surfing experience (such as ad blockers, ahem).

      Like

      Comment by techpaul | September 13, 2009 | Reply

  2. TechPaul,

    Just the fact that you are pointing out that you can personalize your email with a “customized block of text” that will fly with each email is worth a thousand words. Even after many, many years of this feature being in existence with nearly email package out there (including webmail); many folks fail to take advantage of it.

    Rick

    Like

    Comment by Ramblinrick | September 13, 2009 | Reply

    • Rick,
      Having a signature can (does?) add a professional touch to your correspondence, and is a great way to self-promote.

      And, I don’t think everybody ignores signatures…

      Like

      Comment by techpaul | September 13, 2009 | Reply


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