Decide what contact details to include in email signatures with these top 10 email signature contact details DOs & DON'Ts.
Email signature contact details matter above all other signature elements. They give all recipients valuable information for getting in touch with you as well as details on your overall company structure.
Make sure you follow best practice by following our top 10 email signature contact details DOs & DON'Ts and turn your email signature into an electronic business card.
1. DON’T include everything
Only include ESSENTIAL contact details within an email signature. These include name, job title, company name and address, phone number, website URL and email address. Too much contact information can comes across as slightly desperate.
Also, only ever use four to seven lines for contact information. If you use any more than this, it will make the signature harder to read and look untidy. Just remember that less is always more!
2. DO include a full name on every signature
Did you know that just over 30% of professionals don’t even include their name in their email signature? Not very professional, is it?
As a standard rule, all users must have their first and last name appear at the top of their email signature without exception. The name should always be their proper name, not a nickname. If a user so wishes, a middle name or initial can also be included.
3. DO make sure all contact details are up-to-date
The main purpose of an email signature is to provide contact information to recipients over email. If an email signature does not include up-to-date information in it, it becomes somewhat redundant.
People change job roles, phone numbers change and organizations move offices, so make sure this is reflected in your organization’s email signatures. Ideally, you will want to take the contact details of every user from your Active Directory to ensure they are correct.
4. DON’T forget to include your email address with a ‘mailto:’ link
It is often thought to be pointless to include an email address in an email signature. You can clearly see who an email is from by looking in the ‘From:’ field, right?
Well, some email clients like Outlook use display names rather than email addresses to improve readability and familiarity. So, when an email is forwarded onto another person, the display name will appear rather than the email address e.g. ‘firstname.lastname@example.org’
would be shown as just ‘Joe Bloggs’, which is not much use if you want to email that person.
The best way to avoid this is to include an email address and link it with a ‘mailto:’ link to make it easy for someone to send an email to the original sender.
5. DO have different signatures for internal and external recipients
This is especially important if you have multiple office locations or you have a large number of employees. You don’t need to include the company address, but having your job title, department and extension number makes it easier for other colleagues to contact you.
6. DON’T include personal information
This is a work email signature, not a place to promote your personal Twitter page. Personal data about yourself should not be used for business purposes or to communicate with professional associates. They probably won’t even be interested in what you have to say and you probably won’t want them knowing how to contact you every hour of the day.
7. DON’T forget to check the rules
Depending on where you are based, your email signature may need to include additional information such as a company registration number, office address and VAT number.
In many European countries, the above are legal requirements, so don’t run the risk of your organization getting fined. Make sure you do your research and find out what rules apply to your company so you can apply the right content to your email signatures.
8. DO consider adding a photo
Used by a lot of people who work within real estate, finance and law, a photo in your email signature adds a much more human touch to corporate email communications. Without a photo, you are a faceless entity on the other side of an email message.
Letting people see what you look like is a great way to increase trust and build positive business relationships.
9. DO have different signatures for different departments/locations
Do you have salespeople who are out of the office a lot? Do you have employees working in different office locations? Ensure this is reflected in their email signatures especially if you have people based in a number of geographic locations.
Keep everyone happy by letting each team use a different template to suit their email signature needs. Give extra branding to the marketing team’s signature but a promotional banner to the sales team.
10. DON’T do it yourself
If this all sounds too daunting, don’t worry. There are third party email signature software solutions that can do all of the hard work for you.
Using an email signature solution means you will always get consistent email signature contact details like names, departments and job titles pulled from your Active Directory. You can also precisely control email signature designs and easily vary them for different teams/departments.