How to Create a Signature in Windows Live Mail

An email signature is a snippet of information that gets sent at the end of an email. You can build this type of signature in most email clients, including Windows Live Mail and Outlook Express. You can even have the email signature applied to all of your outgoing emails by default.

Most people use their name for their email signature, as a way to say who the email is from without having to type it each time they send out new messages. If you're in a business setting, you might use the email signature to show the company logo, your phone and fax number, your alternate email address, etc.

Some email programs let you add multiple signatures so that you can have one for work email, one for private messages, and another for emails sent to your friends that includes a witty remark or some other content you don't want to share with any other group of people.

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Regardless of your reasoning for making an email signature, and despite what the email signature will contain, you can make one fairly easily in most email programs.

Mail for Windows 10 is an email program distinctly different from Windows Live Mail and its ancestors, so setting up Mail for email signatures works a bit differently, too.

Email Signatures in Windows Live Mail and Outlook Express

Here's how to make an email signature in these programs:

  1. Navigate to the File > Options > Mail menu item. Another way to get there if the File menu isn't available in your version of the program is to use Tools > Options.

  2. Open the Signatures tab.

  3. Select New from the Signatures area.

  4. Build your email signature under Edit Signature.

  5. Select OK when you're finished.

  6. While composing a message, you can select which signature you want to use:

    1. Go to Insert > Signature. Hold down the Alt key if you cannot see the menu bar.
    2. Pick the desired signature from the list.
  7. An email signature is basically an extension of every single email, so you want to make sure that it serves its purpose without being too much for the recipient to handle.

Tips on Making Email Signatures

For example, try your best to limit the email signature to four to five lines of text. Anything longer is not only hard to read and glance at, but it can be distracting at first look because there's so much text below the regular email. It might even look like spam.

The signature area of an email is normally for plain text only, meaning that you won't see lots of email signatures with fancy images and animated GIFs. However, you can enrich your signature with HTML formatting.

If you find yourself choosing a different email signature often, like when sending a work email instead of a private one, you might consider setting up a per-account email signature. That way, when you send an email from your work account, it will append the work email signature to the end, and when you write messages from your other accounts, different signatures can be used instead.

If the email signature isn't being sent to every email you send out, return to Step 2 above and make sure the Add signatures to all outgoing messages option has a check in the box. Also notice the other option under that one called Don't add signatures to Replies and Forwards—uncheck this if you do want those messages to include the signature, too.

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