How to Insert a Signature in Word

Easily create and insert a signature for your documents

Microsoft Word is the go-to word processor for many types of documents, from letters to leases to legal forms. Some types of documents require a signature, and there are several ways to insert a signature in Word. 

Here's how to digitally sign a Word document, insert a handwritten signature, add a signature line, or even create a custom AutoText signature, complete with your name, credentials, and any other details you want to include. 

Instructions here pertain to Word 2019, 2016, 2013, 2010, and Word for Office 365. Some instructions apply to Word for Mac, when noted.

How to Add a Digital Signature With Signature Line

A digital signature is an encrypted, electronic form of authentication that confirms that a document hasn't been altered. You can add a digital signature in Word 2019, 2016, 2013, 2010, and Word for Office 365. This feature is currently not supported in Word for Mac.

Before you can digitally sign a document, you must obtain a digital certificate.

To create a digital signature:

  1. Place the cursor where you want to create a signature line in your document. 

  2. Go to the Insert tab.

  3. Select Signature Line in the Text group and select Microsoft Office Signature Line. The Signature Setup dialog box opens. 

  4. Type the information you want to appear under the signature line, including the signer’s full name, title, email address, and any instructions. 

    Digital signature setup in Word screenshot
  5. Select Allow the Signer to Add Comments in the Sign Dialog if you want to allow the signer to type their purpose for signing.

  6. Select Show Sign Date in Signature Line if you want the date the document was signed to appear.

  7. Right-click the signature line and select Sign to add your signature. 

  8. Type your name as you want it to appear. 

How to Insert a Handwritten Signature

If you have a scanner, upload an image of your physical signature. When you store the scan on your computer, you can easily insert your signature in Word whenever you need it.

These instructions apply to Word 2019, 2016, 2013, 2010, and Word for Office 365

  1. Sign your name on a white, unlined piece of paper. 

  2. Scan the signature and save it as a bmp, .gif, .jpg, or .png file. 

  3. Start Word.

  4. Go to the Insert tab and select Pictures

  5. Navigate to the signature file and select Insert

  6. Select the image and activate the Picture Tools tab.

  7. Select Crop and crop the image to remove excess space around the signature. 

    Insert signature Word
  8. Right-click the image and select Save as Picture.

  9. Enter a name, choose where to save it, and select Save.

  10. Whenever you need to insert the signature in Word, simply go to the Insert tab, select Picture, and locate the file.

How to Insert a Handwritten Signature in Word 2016 for Mac and Office 365 for Mac

  1. Sign your name on a white, unlined piece of paper. 

  2. Scan the signature and save it as a bmp, .gif, .jpg, or .png file. 

  3. Start Word.

  4. Go to the Insert tab and select Pictures.

  5. Select Picture from File.

  6. Navigate to the signature file and select Insert

  7. Select the image to select it and activate the Picture Tools tab.

  8. Select Crop and crop the image to remove excess space around the signature. 

  9. Right-click the image and choose Save as Picture.

  10. Enter a name, choose where to save, it and select Save.

  11. Whenever you need to insert the signature in Word, simply go to the Insert tab, click Picture, select Picture from File and locate the file

How to Create Auto Text

Use Word’s Quick Parts or AutoText feature to create a complete signature that includes your handwritten signature and typed text, such as your job title, email address, and phone number. Begin by creating and inserting a handwritten signature, then follow the steps for your version of Word. 

Whether you have Quick Parts or AutoText depends on which version of Word you're using.

AutoText Signature in Word 2019, 2016, 2013, 2010 and Word for Office 365

  1. Type the information you want to use directly beneath the inserted signature image. Format the text as you want it to appear when you insert the signature block in documents.

  2. Drag your mouse over the image and text to select and highlight it. 

  3. Go to the Insert tab and select Quick Parts in the Text group. 

  4. Choose Save Selection to Quick Part Gallery. The Create New Building Block dialog box opens.

  5. Type a name for the signature block.

  6. Choose AutoText in the Gallery Box and select OK to save the signature block.

  7. Any time you want to add the signature in Word, go to the Insert tab, select Quick Parts, point to AutoText, and select the name of the signature block. 

    Create a Quick Text signature screenshot

AutoText Signature in Word 2016 for Mac and Office 365 for Mac

  1. Type the information you want to use directly beneath the inserted signature image. Format the text as you want it to appear when you insert the signature block in documents.

  2. Drag your mouse over the image and text to select and highlight it. 

  3. Go to the Insert menu, point to AutoText and click New.

  4. The Create New AutoText dialog box opens.

  5. Type a name for the signature block and click OK.

  6. Any time you want to add the signature in Word, go to the Insert menu, point to AutoText, select AutoText, and choose the name of the signature block. 

How to Add a Signature Line

If you simply want to add a signature line to allow someone to sign a printed document, it's an easy process. Add a signature line in Word 2019, 2016, 2013, 2010, and Word for Office 365.

This feature is not currently supported in Word for Mac.

  1. Select a space in the Word document where you want to insert the signature line.

  2. Go to the Insert tab and select Signature Line. The Signature Setup dialog box opens. 

  3. Select any options you want and choose OK. A signature line appears on the document.

    Signature line in Word screenshot