This Is the Ideal Size for an Email Signature

The Best Email Signature Size

Wondering what the optimal size would be for your email signature? Find out here how big an email signature should be (and what it should include).

First, a Town Is Founded

The new community at the center of Oliver County also got a name right away, of course, and for its location since 1902 is known as “Center, ND.”

The center of Oliver County, as it happens, is also the geographical center of North America (as the point with the minimal distance to the sum of all other points).

So, the center of Center is the center of the continent.

Now, a continent is a wee bit big for an email signature, and the point at its center a tad small; it’ll have to be something in between:

This Is the Ideal Size for an Email Signature

Email signatures mark the end of an email and contain important (marketing, perchance) information.

To be effective in conveying that information, a signature is best not overbearing but concentrated.

So, for the best email signature size:

  • Your signature should not be more than 5–7 lines high.
  • The signature should not go beyond 80 characters per line.
  • An added signature image is best place to either side of the text.
    Image size: The image itself should, of course, not exceed the recommended signature image size.
    Signature delimiter: The standard signature separator does not count as one of the lines.

In plain test, the recommended signature box has these approximate dimensions:

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Best Email Signature Size Example

With sample text filed in, the signature box looks like so:

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║ Heinz Tschabitscher                                                ║
║ La De Du – Email How-To Advice                                     ║
║ +43 (555) 73927692 | https://ladedu.com                            ║
║ Best Email Signature Size? https://ladedu.com/sigsize              ║
║                                                                    ║
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This Is the Ideal Size for an Email Signature: FAQ

Why should my signature not exceed the recommended size?

A signature larger than 5–7 lines and 80 characters causes problems of convenience and legibility in both dimensions.

  • Tall signatures (10 lines or more) make reading email conversations that quote more than one message cumbersome.
    Compact signatures by contrast help distinguish individual messages in a thread.
  • Wide signatures (with lines exceeding 80 characters) either flow into the next line and break the signature’s formatting itself or widen the display area for the email as a whole—and command the recipient to side-scroll.
    Compact signatures by contrast fit into the recipient’s email reading width so the whole email is easily legible.

What should the email signature contain?

What a signature contains is determined by its—and your—function.
(Are you an artist promoting your portfolio and displaying your character? Do you perform a specific role in a large corporation? Do you want to invite people to listen to your podcast?)

Core elements of email signatures are:

  • Name – Essential
    Please do include your name prominently and in the first line of your signature. It is redundant, but your name is crucially important to the recipient—for categorizing the message and for addressing a reply to you.
  • Title or Function – Essential for corporate, optional otherwise
    Your role, title or job also helps the recipient understand your message, and it helps you promote yourself.
  • Company – Essential for vocational emails
    Below the role or function, do include the company name if it is at all relevant.
  • Phone number – Recommended for vocational emails
    Many a problem is easier solved by talking. If you can, do include a vocational phone number in your email signature.
  • Social contact – Recommended alternative to phone number
    If you do not include a phone number, do add at least one alternative to contacting you by email. You can, of course, add both phone number and links to social profiles or messaging applications.
  • Your email address – Optional
    It is not necessary to include your email address in the signature, but for the sake of completeness its inclusion is common. If you want people to respond to your message at an address different from the From: address, use Reply-to: or mention the address in the email’s text.
  • Street address – Not recommended
    For businesses it can make sense (and even be mandatory) to include a physical address. If you do not have to include your address, the space is better left vacant, though.
  • Website – Optional
    Include a link to your website if you want to promote it.
  • Promotion – Optional
    Do include a brief link to a recent article, a sale currently running, your favorite photo sharing site, etc. Make the promotional material fit on one line.
  • Quote – Not recommended
    Historically, email signatures did contain quotes, and they still make a good substitute for promotional messages.

Can I use formatting in my signature?

Yes!

Do create hierarchy inside your signature with formatting options and font choice.

Functioning links: If you do use formatting, make sure the links in your signature do link to their target. (With plain text, email programs and services detect URIs automatically.)

Here’s a still boring example:

Email Signature Size Example

Should I use the signature separator?

Yes, using the standard email signature separator is good email etiquette practice no matter the size and formatting of your signature.

Put the delimiter above your signature if your email program does not include it automatically.

(The ideal size for an email signature first published April 2021, last updated March 2024)

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