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The 7 Worst Email Signature Templates

Brought to you by Exclaimer

Getting the design of an email signature template right can be tricky. It’s also very easy to get wrong. Sending an email with a badly designed email signature can reflect badly on you and your company.

Below are 7 examples of the worst email signatures that will show you what you shouldn't do when you create a signature template:

1. Multiple fonts, sizes, and colors

An example of a terrible email signature design

Avoid using lots of different fonts, colors, and sizes such as in this terrible email signature example below. It makes the contact information too difficult to read. Your email disclaimer will also look more prominent that you want it to. This makes it one of the worst email signatures possible.

We recommend using a maximum of one font size (between 10-12px) and two font colors in your business email signature. These need to be in line with your brand guidelines.

2. Badly ordered content

Badly ordered content in a terrible email signature

When creating an email signature, the content must be ordered in a logical way. Placing the logo and your name in the middle of the signature does not make sense. It makes important elements like your phone number and email address harder to find. It should be easy for a recipient to find relevant contact information quickly.

When building the email signature template, create a hierarchy for contact details. Think about what information your contacts would want to see first. Usually, your full name and job title will appear first. Then you include ways for people to contact you along with the URL of your company.

3. Giant social media icons

The worst email signatures use badly ordered content

This example below is a poor email signature design because the social media icons take up most of the room in the signature. The social media icons should not be the focal point of an email signature, it should be the company logo. This will ensure your brand is instantly recognized by your contacts.

You also shouldn't include links to social media unless they are relevant. If you're on ten different platforms, only link to four at most. The worst email signatures include to many links that simply overwhelm the rest of the signature content.

4. Lots of hyperlinks

An email signature shouldn’t include lots of links

The worst email signature examples use lots of hyperlinks. These end up looking messy and isn’t necessary when you can use HTML images instead.

In this example, the links can be replaced with social media icons or a promotional banner for the sale items.

5. Too many images

This terrible email signature contains too many images

The terrible email signature example below features too many HTML images which distracts from the contact details. There is simply too much going on and will detract from the content of the email itself. The signature probably won't render correctly in many email clients and almost certainly won't be mobile-friendly.

Limit the amount of social media icons, awards logos, and certificates you include in your signature, so it does not look overcrowded. You don't need to promote every award you've ever won. Only the worst email signature templates do this.

If you're running an email signature marketing campaign, choose images that are relevant. For example, include one display banner with a clear call to action. This will improve the efficacy of your campaign.

6. Large email disclaimer

Use a small font size for an email disclaimer

When people complain about email signatures, it's often to do with the email disclaimer. This is particularly true if the text is long and takes up a lot of room in the email body.

Many companies legally have to use a disclaimer, but it should never be the main focus of a professional email signature. Only the worst email signatures make the disclaimer the dominant content. If the text is too overwhelming, the content of the email will become too difficult to read. This will inevitably lead to people deleting your messages.

If you must use a long disclaimer in your email signature, make sure the text is a small size, so it doesn’t take up lots of room.

Also, make sure that the disclaimer appears somewhat apart from the main signature block.

7. No spacing between images and text

No spacing in an email signature template looks cluttered

The worst email signature templates use no spacing (also known as padding) such as in the example below. This makes a terrible signature design because the content looks squashed. It makes everything too difficult to read and will render poorly.

By adding spacing between the signature contents, you’ll ensure that the contact details are easy to read.

Need help designing a professional email signature?

If you want to avoid creating the worst email signature designs, Exclaimer can provide you with design inspiration and best practice guidelines.

Whether you’re designing for mobile devices, plain text or want to see how to incorporate a promotional banner into your signature, check out our email signature template gallery for examples of how to get signature design right.

And if you want to ensure you never create a terrible email signature template again, choose Exclaimer to centrally design and manage signatures for everyone in your organization. Exclaimer has a range of products for Office 365 (now Microsoft 365), G Suite (now Google Workspace), and Microsoft Exchange that make controlling email signatures simple.

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