By Charlie Sorrel of Cult of Mac
You already know that you can add a signature to your outgoing emails in the Mail app on iOS and macOS, but did you know that you can make that signature fancy? And I mean, really fancy. You don’t just have to put your email address or phone number in there in regular text. You can add any kind of text you like, complete with colors and cool fonts. You can even add an image.
Add a basic email signature in iOS
First off, lets see where you add your signature. In iOS, head to the Settings app, and scroll down the left column until you hit Mail. Tap that, and scroll to the last entry in the list: Signature. Tap that, and type in whatever you like.
And that’s it. Whatever you type there will be used as your email signature on all outgoing emails. But anything you type there will also be pretty basic. You can use bold, italic and underlined text by tapping on a word to activate the black bubble popover and choosing one of the text options in there, but that’s it. To make a fancy signature, you need to create it elsewhere and paste it into this box.
One thing to note right away. Any email signatures you create are for that device only. Signatures don’t sync via iCloud, so you must copy the signature between devices if you want it to appear consistently. Thanks to iCloud’s Universal Clipboard, it’s easy to copy something on one device, and then paste it on another. For instructions, check out our in-depth tutorial on iCloud’s Universal Clipboard.
Getting fancy with Pages
For gussying up your text, a great tool is Apple’s own Pages, which you probably already have on one of your devices. If not, it’s free to download and use. To make a signature, let’s create a new, blank document. To do this, open Pages, then tap the plus sign in the top corner. Pick Blank from the templates, and you’re ready to go.
First, type in your information. Keep it short, because nobody cares about that Werner Herzog quote you like so much. You mightn’t bother with your email address either, because if you’re corresponding with someone via email, they probably already know it.
Dull, right? Let’s fancy it up a little. To access Pages’ text-styling tool, tap the little paintbrush icon. This works the same on Mac, iPad and iPhone versions of Pages, although the layout varies depending on screen size.
Here you see how I changed the typeface, size and color of my initials. I picked Helvetica Thin, upped the size to 30pt, and changed the color to a nice near-fuchsia. I also switched the rest of the text to Helvetica Thin, and fiddled with sizes.
Add and style links
You may also notice that I removed the underline from the Cultofmac.com link. In Pages, any text can be turned into a link by tapping (or clicking) on it, and choosing Link from the contextual menu. From there, a popover panel appears, letting you customize the URL and the display name. You can also make the link into an email, or a bookmark link. Many email apps will automatically recognize links anyway, so you may not want bother with this.
To remove the underline from a link, just tap the already-highlighted Underscore button in the text panel (the paintbrush panel that we already used to change fonts). This works great until you paste it into Mail, whereupon the underline is added back.
‘Export’ your text as a signature
Now, all you need to do to is select your new signature, copy it, then switch to the Signature section in the Mail settings we discussed above. Just paste the signature in, and you’re good to go. To add the same signature on other devices, copy the text, pick up the other device and paste it. It’s easy.
Pictures in email signatures
You may be tempted to add an image to your signature. If you want to, paste it into the signature field, just like we did with text. But remember, not all email apps will display it properly. Some may show an attachment icon instead of putting your cool logo inline with the rest of your signature. Some may fail to show it altogether. You never know. It may be better, then, to use smart typography to do the job for you.
And there you have it. A smart, typographical signature that should survive most mail clients, but that will respect the settings of the recipient, falling back gracefully on plain text if that’s how they choose to read email. Everyone is happy.
Do you have a best practice for capturing a fancy email signature? Tell us about it in the comments below!