How to eSign Documents Using a PDF Editor

As a contractor, student, business person, or teacher, you regularly work with PDF documents. And while creating PDFs is easy, what will you do if you need to sign a document electronically?

The short answer is yes, you can. With a cloud-based PDF editor, you don’t need to append your signature each time you have a contract or form. Premium tools that allow you to edit PDF online also have e-signing capabilities.

But if you need more detailed steps for using a PDF text editor to sign documents electronically, the next few sections will show you how.

What is eSign?

eSign is the short form of electronic signature. Like signing paper documents using a pen, eSign features let you sign digital documents without printing, signing, and scanning. 

But not every PDF editor gives you the option of signing documents electronically. With the help of an easy to use online PDF editor, you can digitize your documentation and workflow.

Differences between eSignature and digital signature 

People confuse eSignatures for digital signatures, which isn’t surprising since some use them interchangeably. 

An eSignature is a legal attachment you add to your paper to signify ownership. The signature could be a symbol, sound, letter, or drawing. On the other hand, a digital signature refers to the encryption and decryption of documents. 

Digital signatures confirm the authenticity of an eSignature or help you protect the information in your document after eSigning. If you use only a digital signature, you can’t legally sign a contract.

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Why do you need eSign?

eSignatures encourage a smooth transition to a paperless documentation process since you don’t need to print documents. But its benefits don’t stop there. Other reasons for eSigning documents include:

  • eSign is reliable

When you eSign a document, others can easily determine its originality. With an online PDF editor, you can view version histories of documents.

The eSign feature in a PDF editor online logs whoever altered records and the person’s changes, so you can pinpoint the document’s creator and ascertain ownership.

  • It streamlines your paperless workflow

eSigning can help you streamline the workflow in your business. With the feature, you eliminate unnecessary activities like printing and scanning documents.

All you need to do is share the links to documents, and necessary parties can sign at their convenience. With this feature, you have a better shot at working more efficiently.

  • It is convenient

An online PDF editor is convenient, and you can use it from anywhere. Whether you are a remote worker or on vacation, all you need is access to the internet.

You can sign documents on the go and return them to the sender. And since approved parties can independently sign documents using an easy PDF editor, you do not need to wait for other people’s input before signing your part.

How to eSign a PDF using an iPhone

With the progress in technology, people now frequently use PDF documents to share information. So it’s common to get requests to sign documents and turn them in even if you aren’t in the office.

Phones are pocket-friendly, so the likelihood of you being without one is quite slim. And fortunately, you can use a PDF editing software, or the markup tool feature of your iPhone to eSign a PDF.

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Follow these steps on your iPhone:

  • Access the document on your device. 
  • Scroll to the toolbar and choose “Fill & Sign”
  • Select “Signature”
  • Go to “Create Signature”
  • Sign and save.

If you need someone else to sign the document, you can easily send it across to the person or select the “Customer Signature” option on your phone. You can use a customer signature just once and not copy it to another document.

How to eSign a PDF using an online editor

There are usually three methods to eSign a PDF using an online editor. You can create an eSignature, upload an already-made signature, or choose from the PDF editor’s signature styles.

How to create an eSignature

To create an electronic signature, you can do the following:

  • Open the document.
  • Select the “Signature” icon.
  • Draw using the “Brush” icon.
  • Toggle the brush settings to alter its opacity, color, or size.
  • Save the signature and attach it to your document.

How to insert already-made signatures

If you have already signed on a paper and want to attach the signature to your document, you must upload the signature. To upload an already-made signature, you can do the following:

  • Sign your signature on blank paper.
  • Open the PDF file in the online editor.
  • Go to the signature icon on the toolbox and select the option to upload an image.
  • Select the picture of your signature from your storage.

How to use a signature style

If you don’t want to draw a signature and prefer typing one instead, follow the prompt:

  • Open the document.
  • Choose the signature icon on the toolbar.
  • Select type.

Now, you can go ahead with typing the signature and attaching it to your document using your preferred fonts.

Four editors to eSign PDF documents

Now that you know the benefit of eSigning documents and how to go about it, the rest of this article will guide you to the top four editors with a reliable eSign feature.  

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Lumin PDF

Lumin PDF is a PDF editor that provides several features to its users.  With this tool, you can edit PDF file online, annotate, and even sign documents. You can use this PDF editor for PC and Mac.

With this editor’s many premium tools, you can tweak PDF documents, sync your files across devices and save your document to the cloud.

Adobe Acrobat

Adobe, the pioneer of PDF editing tools, has been in the market for a long time. Despite being the oldest PDF editing software, the developers never fail to provide customers with the latest PDF editing features. But unlike some PDF editors, you don’t have much leeway when trying to edit PDF online free with Adobe Reader; you need Adobe Acrobat for that.

Adobe Acrobat was the best PDF editor that money could buy for a while. And in addition to editing, sharing, and collaborating on documents, you can now eSign PDFs and sync the changes across devices.

Small PDF

Small PDF is a free PDF editor you can use on any device. You can conveniently eSign, edit and annotate any PDF file using Small PDF’s dozens of features. And by letting you sync changes across devices, you can invite others to sign PDF documents and contracts.

The name “Small PDF” can be misleading because this PDF tool has more features than most on the market. With its cloud-based storage option, you don’t need to worry about losing files, and you can expect faster document retrieval. You can even download the Small PDF editor app on your phone and edit PDF file from the comfort of your home.


eSigning a PDF document is more straightforward than it sounds; you just need to understand the concept and know the best tools to use. And with the various applications of eSignatures, learning to sign on a PDF editor Mac or any other device is a valuable skill. With the tools recommended in this article, you can conveniently sign PDFs electronically, so please try them out today.


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