Though there will likely always be a place in society for pen-and-paper signatures, commonly known as wet signatures, electronic signatures are increasingly becoming the norm, and rightfully so.
eSignatures make the process of signing any document smooth and easy, and you can be anywhere in the world to do it. But that’s just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to reasons why eSignatures are so popular nowadays.
In fact, electronic signatures have become so prevalent that if your company isn’t using a service like eSignature solutions by eSignly, you’re probably missing out on business opportunities.
The Rise of eSignatures
eSignatures have been around longer than you might think — since the late 80s, believe it or not. However, they only started becoming more widely used since the E-Sign Act made electronic signatures legally binding in the year 2000.
That being said, there weren’t a lot of eSignature software options, like eSignatures by eSignly, in the early 2000s. That meant that wet signatures were still very much the preferred way of signing legal documents for the first decade of the new millennium.
Things really started to change around 2008, when the PDF file format, which included eSignatures as an official part of the format, was declared an open standard by the International Organization for Standardization (ISO).
The popularity of eSignatures steadily grew over the next 10+ years, and they are now widely recognized as the most secure way to sign legally binding documents.
What makes eSignatures more secure than traditional signatures?
They leave an electronic record (details about when the document was opened, viewed, and signed)
They come with certificates of completion (includes timestamps of key events and details about each signer, including identifying information and their IP addresses)
- They have built-in tamper-proof seals (prevent the document from being altered after it has been signed and sealed)
Reasons Why Every Business Should Use eSignatures
Besides the fact that eSignatures are more secure than traditional wet signatures, there are a plethora of other reasons why every business should be making the switch to using electronic signatures. Here are just a few of them:
eSignatures are more efficient
One of the biggest advantages of digitally signing documents is that the turnaround on signing is much, much faster than with the traditional method.
Printing, signing, scanning, and resending a document is an extremely inefficient use of time for everyone involved. But, with eSignatures, all parties can sign a legal document in just a few seconds.
This means that the ball keeps rolling on important processes rather than getting stalled because of a missing signature.
eSignatures can help you sell more
Because of their convenience and efficiency, using eSignatures can actually make it easier to close sales. If you work in sales, you know how quickly a sale can break down because of a small inconvenience.
If you require customers to print and sign documents the old-school way, it’s a potential barrier to closing a sale. When you send them a document that can be signed in a matter of seconds, it’s much simpler and much less likely to cause problems that can delay or dead-end the sale.
eSignatures also help reduce the length of your sales cycles and give you more time for important tasks other than administrative ones like pursuing client signatures.
eSignatures are greener
Electronic signatures mean less paper and ink used to print and sign documents. This makes them an environmentally friendly alternative to traditional wet signatures that can help your business reduce its carbon footprint by going more paperless.
eSignatures are cheaper
Using less paper and ink also translates into savings on your company’s operating costs. Using eSignatures also means that you don’t have to spend a dime on things like envelopes, postage, and other mailing supplies.
eSignatures are easier to track
When you send physical documents to someone to sign, you often have no idea where they are or whether the individual has even opened them yet — let alone if they have been signed or not.
With eSignatures, you know exactly when the documents get delivered (instantly!), plus you can track when they are opened by the receiver and get notifications when they are signed.
Not only that, but eSignature software can send automatic reminders to the parties who still need to sign, so you don’t have to bug anyone to get the signatures you need.
eSignatures make customers happy
Customers and clients get frustrated if your processes aren’t streamlined and easy to use, which could potentially result in lost business opportunities.
eSignatures allow people to quickly and conveniently sign documents with minimal interruption to their schedules, resulting in happier customers and better overall client satisfaction with your business.
eSignatures increase your reach
Requiring physical signatures limits you from doing business with people you can mail physical documents to. However, using eSignatures allows your company to close deals with people anywhere in the world.
With digital signing, you’re no longer limited by things like the cost and time of shipping documents across the country or internationally.
eSignatures are mobile-friendly
Not only can your clients and customers electronically sign important documents in less than a minute, but they can do it right from their mobile devices.
You don’t even have to wait for them to sit down in front of a computer to get their signatures. This can save you even more time and make everyone happier, including employees waiting for a signature to keep business moving.